The coronavirus pandemic has halted what would have been Milwaukee's year as an up-and-coming travel destination, but the city continues to garner exposure.
VISIT Milwaukee announced Thursday that Google has added Milwaukee to its Arts & Culture app, which allows users to explore art, history and culture from around the world. The digital platform, which launched in 2011, features art works from 2,000 cultural institutions located in 80 countries.
Milwaukee is the first city in the Great Lakes region and second in the country to be featured as its own destination on the app. It joins Kansas City and a number of European cities including Milan and Naples, Italy; Lyon, France; and Hamburg, Germany, according to a news release.
Sixteen local organizations contributed to the app's Milwaukee-themed page, which describes the city as 'Fiercely independent, wholly unexpected.' All told, it features 2,000 artworks and artifacts, curated into more than 80 stories.
The project also includes 50 artworks captured in ultra-high resolution with Google’s Art Camera, two 360-degree Street View tours of the Milwaukee Public Museum and Grohmann Museum at the Milwaukee School of Engineering.
"VISIT Milwaukee is thrilled to have contributed to Milwaukee's Google Arts & Culture section," said Peggy Williams-Smith, president and CEO of VISIT Milwaukee. "We appreciate the visibility this will bring to our city and look forward to sharing Milwaukee's rich cultural story with an even wider audience."
Black Cat Alley, the Mackie Building and the RiverWalk are among the iconic Milwaukee landmarks users can virtually tour. They can get a look inside the Milwaukee Art Museum, tour Sculpture Milwaukee's outdoor installment, watch a performance by the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra, learn about the city's Black history, and tune in to a community story produced by 88Nine Radio Milwaukee. The page also publishes individual work by local artists, such as poet Micheala Lacy and 30 Rock actor Maulik Pancholy.
"We are excited to bring Milwaukee’s culture and thriving art scene on Google Arts & Culture for anyone, anywhere to enjoy online,” said Simon Delacroix, Google Arts & Culture U.S. Lead. "From its murals and manufacturing to its breweries and fine art museums, Milwaukee's vibrant cultural scene deserves to be shared with a global audience. Thanks to our 16 local partners, we’re proud to transport everyone to a virtual celebration of this great American city.”