The National Gallery introduces free Wi-Fi

Issued August 2014

Free Wi-Fi is now available throughout the National Gallery – the first of a number of major steps that the Gallery is taking to provide a warmer welcome for visitors.

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Director of Public Engagement, Dr Susan Foister, said:

“We are proud to introduce Wi-Fi to the Gallery, heralding new plans to enhance the experience of our visitors and to engage a broader audience. We know that when people feel inspired they often like to share the moment, so along with the free Wi-Fi service we are now welcoming visitor photography: from now on people will be able to share their experience of the Gallery and its paintings with friends and family through social media.”

Free access to the internet whilst in the Gallery – and now a mobile enabled National Gallery website – means visitors can explore the collection in fresh and inspiring ways. Now when they’re standing in front one of the 2,300 paintings from the 13th to early 20th century, they can instantly, in their hands on their smartphone or tablet, find out all about the artist who painted it and the stories being told, along with the techniques and materials used.

Wi-Fi also means we can interact with our visitors in real time via social media and they can share all their in-gallery experiences with friends, family and networks. Now for the first time National Gallery visitors can Check-In on Facebook using some of the most popular paintings in the collection, they can comment about their favourite works on Twitter using the hashtag #MyNGPainting, and they can post pictures of the rooms they most enjoyed visiting on Instagram.

For international visitors, this means accessing information in different languages, as well as being able to use translation tools. Wi-Fi also opens up the possibilities of including interactive digital elements in our future exhibitions such as multimedia guides or smartphone apps.

The Super Connected Cities Wi-Fi scheme is funded and supported by the Mayor of London and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. Minister for Culture and the Digital Economy, Ed Vaizey, said:

“Free public Wi-Fi in the National Gallery will allow visitors to engage with the masterpieces that adorn its walls in completely new ways. I'm delighted that Government's Super Connected Cities programme has made this exciting new development possible and that the National Gallery will join the hundreds of museums, galleries, libraries and public spaces that will be offering free Wi-Fi as part of our transformation of the UK's digital landscape.”

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NOTES TO EDITORS
The National Gallery houses one of the greatest collections of European paintings in the world. The Collection consists of over 2,300 paintings from the Middle Ages to the early 20th century.  All major traditions of Western European painting are represented, with artists including Titian, Monet, Velázquez, Rembrandt and Van Gogh. The Gallery is a world centre of excellence for the scientific study, art historical research and care of European paintings from the 13th to the early 20th century.

For further information, please contact the National Gallery Press Office - 020 7747 2865 / press@ng-london.org.uk

 
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