Georgian National Museum's digital tours replace physical visits

Items of the Oriental collections of the network as seen through its digital tour. Screenshot of Georgian National Museum Virtual Tour., 17 Mar 2020 - 19:14, Tbilisi,Georgia

While exhibition spaces and cultural institutions shut down across Georgia over the last week as a measure against the new coronavirus, the Georgian National Museum has made available digital tours of its collections to museum-goers staying at home.

The decision sees the GNM, a network of state museums across Georgia, follow a string of venues around the world that have moved to open their spaces to internet users while lockdowns and measures for working from home are in place.

The umbrella organisation for the network said on Tuesday it was launching Museum Virtual Tour, its online platform bringing archaeological items, artwork, biodiversity exhibits and other collections to the web.

A view of archaeological exhibits found in one of seven digital tours launched online by the GNM. Screenshot of Georgian National Museum Virtual Tour.

Seven themed collections, found in various GNM venues and spaces, have been picked to become part of the digital expositions:

Subjects covered by the selections include "unique" examples of goldsmithery and the history of money on the historical territory of the country, the museum network said.

Georgia's rich winemaking legacy and remains from the 1991 Dmanisi site discovery of the then-earliest human fossils found outside the African continent are also found in the tours.

By selecting the exhibitions users are able to use 360-degree navigation through venues and discover items as they are found in related museums.

The GNM also announced it would provide updates to its social media channels to complement the new digital explorations of historical items.