Art Institute First Museum in the World to Offer 'Indoor GPS App'

By Emily Morris on February 20, 2013 5:31pm | Updated on February 20, 2013 5:32pm

 The Art Institute became the first museum in the world to offer an "indoor GPS app" that guide guests on 50 customized virtual tours. 
The Art Institute became the first museum in the world to offer an "indoor GPS app" that guide guests on 50 customized virtual tours. 
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DNAinfo/Ted Cox

CHICAGO — Ever find yourself lost and aimlessly wandering around the Art Institute of Chicago?

Now there's an app for that.

The Art Institute announced Wednesday that it's the first museum in the world to create a free "indoor GPS app" to make art more accessible to locals, out-of-towners and those who simply can't find their way around a Degas painting or a Rodin sculpture.

The app provides customized tours that take guests on journeys through the museum. Tours are organized by occasions (such as a first date, family outing), theme (Chicago artists, fashion in art, etc.) and collections (American folk art, contemporary art, African art). Tours are also organized by time, whether guests plan on spending an entire day or just a few hours.

"We've created an array of tours that will hopefully satisfy everyone — from a family in the museum for the first time to those interested in diving more deeply into specific collections to visitors who want to see works created specifically by Chicago artists," said Art Institute of Chicago's director and president Douglas Druick in a statement.

Each tour showcases six to 10 works of art, with descriptions, turn-by-turn directions and maps, according to the statement.

The app is available for Apple and Android cell phone in the Apple Store and Google Play, the Art Institute said.

The museum is open 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursdays and 10:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. the rest of the week. General admission is $23, with discounts for seniors, students, Chicagoans and Illinois residents. Admission is free to Illinois residents Thursdays after 5 p.m.

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