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Art Institute of Chicago Launches iPhone/iPad App for French Impressionism Collection

The Art Institute of Chicago would likely really prefer that you stop talking about their lawsuit against the engineers who built the new Modern Wing and instead focus on their new iPhone/iPad app. Like the SFMOMA, who was the first museum to come out with an offering for the iPad earlier this year and the many others like it in phone form, from the Tate to the Venice Architecture Biennale, the AIC’s new app is a tour, specifically of its French Impressionism collection, which includes pieces like Seurat’s “A Sunday on La Grande Jatte” and Renoir’s “Two Sisters” among others you may have seen featured in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. The app features what you’d expect, from narrated tours, videos, scans of the collection, more detailed descriptions, and so on. It was developed by a company called Toura, who seem to have begun carving out a nice spot for themselves in the museum and art market, having already previously designed apps for the Hirshhorn, the Royal Academy of Arts, and the Pace Gallery. The AIC’s app will cost $1.99 for the iPhone and Android and $3.99 for the iPad version, which might provide some drop off on users who are used to being able to download these from museums for free (like at the Tate and SFMOMA), but also surely is at a price point where, after paying the $18 entrance fee, isn’t too much more to throw in for the whole experience.

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