If you’ve ever zoomed in on a city in Google maps and click the Street View, it’s most likely you’ll notice that it offers fantastic snap captures of shops and people on the move. On this occasion writer James Lileks had an idea to use a couple of classic landscape paintings and translate them into Street View. Wow.
As travelling through Google Street View can show you images of some real places in the city, now imagine as you click the Street View, instead of the current buildings, you will find some vintage buildings along with people wearing old fashion clothes heading for their horse carts.
It’s for sure fascinating to get an up-close look at places you’d never see before, but this time you can also take a time travel to the past.
By digitally enhancing these traditionally-produced paintings and by adding some marks belonging to present time, Lileks really tries to change the context. Those famous work by Jean Béraud and Aelbert Cuyp depicting the life of the past are suddenly turned into today’s landscape. In his images, Lilieks adds the quintessential icons like directional arrows that we normally find only as Street View symbols signifying that we are on a map.
By turning those art work of the past into portraits of places that exist in the present time, they are not only works from the past but are places that belong to today’s life and suddenly they’re of our world. It’s certainly a contemporary way to enjoy a rural landscape and an old urban center that are vastly different from the ones we know.