We’re all spending a lot more time at home, canceling or rescheduling vacations, and probably not going out to things like movies and museums. With a little creativity, though, staying at home doesn’t mean you can’t experience a little travel, and maybe a little culture, from your home computer.
Google Arts & Culture has a collection of more the 500 different museums and galleries up on its site that you can visit virtually. Clicking through to each one will bring up images of some of the museum or gallery’s collection, and in some cases full virtual tours of the museum you can take to pretend like you’re there. .
Here are links to some of the larger and more iconic collections:
- MoMA – New York
- Van Gough Museum – Amsterdam Many famous and rare works
- Uffisi Gallery – Florence Includes a virtual tour
- Musee D’Orsay – Paris History and tour
- The Met – New York Everything from Ancient Egypt to Dior gowns.
- Tate Britain – London Cool section where famous directors talk about fine art
- Georgia O’Keeffe Museum – Santa Fe Iconic
- British Museum – London This has a great interface to play with
You can also take a virtual tour of a starship! Messy Desk has created a virtual reality recreation of the eponymous starship from The Orville, complete with working navigation and weapons consoles, shuttle pods and recreations of every part of the working set. It’s free to download on Steam. There’s even a multiplayer mode, so you can meet up with friends aboard the Orville and socialize!
Alas, Free Comic Book Day is postponed this year (it normally happens the first weekend in May), but you can get 60 days of free digital comics here from ComiXology (remember it will turn into a subscription at the end of the 60 days).
Into science fiction as literature? Here on the FreeSF web site is a collection of many award-winning Science Fiction stories.
Authors include Ted Chiang, Cat Rambo, A. C. Wise, John Scalzi, Mike Resnick, Harlan Ellison, Rachel Swirsky, Adam-Troy Castro, Meghan McCarron, many more.
And of course, SCIFI.radio remains your best choice for sci-fi and comics themed radio, for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis and beyond.
Have fun, but be safe.
David Raiklen wrote, directed and scored his first film at age 9. He began studying keyboard and composing at age 5. He attended, then taught at UCLA, USC and CalArts. Among his teachers are John Williams and Mel Powel.
He has worked for Fox, Disney and Sprint. David has received numerous awards for his work, including the 2004 American Music Center Award. Dr. Raiklen has composed music and sound design for theater (Death and the Maiden), dance (Russian Ballet), television (Sing Me a Story), cell phone (Spacey Movie), museums (Museum of Tolerance), concert (Violin Sonata ), and film (Appalachian Trail).
His compositions have been performed at the Hollywood Bowl and the first Disney Hall. David Raiken is also host of a successful radio program, Classical Fan Club.