Putting art lovers behind the wheel: Canada offers drive-in Van Gogh show

Toronto Star Building in Canada houses the Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit, a digital art show with a drive-in option.Up to 10 cars can be accommodated at
Photo courtesy: Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit Facebook page/@ImmersiveVanGogh
Photo courtesy: Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit Facebook page/@ImmersiveVanGogh

While the novel coronavirus has forced every business to rethink its strategies, cars have turned out to be the saviours for some. Drive-in and drive-thru facilities are becoming more popular than ever before as cars ensure social distancing. From movies to live concerts and even marriages, drive-in is becoming the new normal.

Art exhibitions are the latest to offer drive-in experience. Creators of the Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit in Toronto Star Building, Canada, are offering a drive-in option for the enthusiasts. Visitors will be able to witness a digital art show in a 600,000-cubic feet of projection. Van Gogh's masterpieces ranging from his sunny landscapes and night scenes, to his portraits and still life paintings will be projected in high definition on walls and floors.

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The art gallery's warehouse can accommodate up to 10 cars at a time at designated parking spots, AFP reported. Car engines will stay off while the 35-minute projection of the artworks goes on, which will be accompanied by music voiced by Stratford actor, Colm Feore. The paintings are positioned such that people can see them through their cars' windshields.

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Called 'Gogh-by-Car', the drive-in option for the art show started in July first week and will go on till September 7. Admission of a car at the exhibition starts at $94.99 and the tickets can be booked online. "The whole thing of sitting in your car and being out and enjoying the art - it was comfortable, it was safe," a visitor was quoted as saying by AFP.

Photo courtesy: Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit Facebook page/@ImmersiveVanGogh
Photo courtesy: Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit Facebook page/@ImmersiveVanGogh

The immersive experience of the art show provided by digital visuals and music while maintaining safe distance is of unique nature. "Viewing art from inside a car provides a safe experience for people who are physically fragile, fearful of the virus or vulnerable," Corey Ross, a co-producer of the exhibit, was quoted as saying by AFP. "The feeling is unique, almost as if the car is floating through the art," she added.

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The gallery also offers a walk-through option for those who prefer taking in their art on foot. The area that hosts people on foot is marked with social distancing circles on the ground. However, the drive-in and walk-through options are temporary arrangements and the gallery would go back to traditional way of art viewing as soon as there is an opportunity.

(with inputs from AFP)

First Published Date: 11 Jul 2020, 14:09 PM IST

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