We view Google as an online medium or a guide that helps us locate stories and narratives. But, sometimes, Google can be the storyteller too. As part of its Google Arts & Culture initiative, the company unveiled a virtual museum of sorts, that includes artworks and collections related to the life of Indian women through history.
The project is titled, 'Women In India: Unheard stories" and it features a total of 50 stories or virtual exhibitions that showcase over 1,800 artworks, photographs and videos, capturing the stories of heroic women ranging from mythical personalities to historical figure who stood out in diverse fields such as medicine, science, politics, culture and art.
These include Savitri Bai Phule, who worked tirelessly to educate women, India's first practicing woman doctor Dr Rakhmabai, and the first woman legislator Dr Muthulakhsmi Reddi.
"This project is an effort to recognize the impact of Indian women in history and their impact on culture," Luisella Mazza, Head of Operations, Google Cultural Institute said at the project's launch event. "While looking at where we are, we also wanted to look forward and inspire women and leaders of the future. It is our ongoing effort to make important cultural material available and accessible to everyone and to digitally preserve it to educate and inspire future generations."
The project includes several videos, some recreating events and personalities with actors, and others featuring actual historical footage.
They offer a 360-degree immersive experience of sights connected to these important historical figures, that can be accessed on the web, or mobile and in VR.
"At Google Cultural institute our goal is not just to bring these hidden stories out in a very interesting and immersive manner," Mazza said. "So we have taken help of photographs, sketches, videos and 360 degree content. In future, we want to bring more to the table."
Also featured are virtual exhibits from different museums, including the Mother Goddess exhibit from 1st century BCE at the Indian Museum in Kolkata and 17 new virtual exhibits from the Centre for Art & Archaeology of the American Institute of Indian Studies. The project has also partnered with the Kiran Nadar Museum of Art from New Delhi to present works by contemporary women artists.
Mazza said that in the future, Google Art and Culture wants to bring more examples on the website of powerful women in India through various mediums and experiences.