After two million people listened to musician Maggie Rogers narrate an ASMRy video about Van Gogh's Starry Night, Google has released a second season of Art Zoom. The project combines the Google Arts & Culture division’s photography with wispy narration from musicians, and the first set of videos last year also featured Feist on Bruegel, Jarvis Cocker on Monet and Girl in Red on Edvard Munch.
The 2020 batch features a diverse range of artists and musicians. The 1975 frontman Matty Healy gets into Mondrian’s abstract art, K-pop group Twice’s Chaeyoung narrates Yoo Youngkuk’s Mountain, while Grimes covers Bruegel’s The Fall of Rebel Angels. There are also videos from English singer-songwriters FKA twigs and Ellie Goulding, and Colombian reggaeton star J.Balvin. Although the decision to highlight Bruegel for a second time is strange, it’s an interesting line-up with something for everyone.
The Art Zoom project’s aim is to bring art to a broader audience, while also highlighting the work Google has done to digitize famous artworks using its “gigapixel” Art Camera setup. Some videos are more insightful than others; Grimes’ narration is essentially just listing things in the painting, while FKA twigs’ blends factual descriptions with more emotive analysis. You can find all of the videos on the Google Arts & Culture YouTube channel.