Google is hosting the British Library’s History of Magic exhibition online as the physical version closes its doors.
The online site, hosted on Google’s arts and culture page, features 360-degree recreations of the galleries from the exhibitions, which were based on various aspects of J K Rowling’s magical world such as divination, herbology, care of magical creatures and alchemy. There is also an interview with Jim Kay, who created the illustrated versions of the first three Harry Potter books, and a feature about British library curator Julian Harrison, who helped put on the show.
Suhair Khan, UK programme manager for the Google site, told the Guardian that the online exhibition had been planned months before the physical version opened last October. Google is planning more projects with the British Library, she added.
The online exhibits will be available free, worldwide and in six languages.
The British Library announced “Harry Potter: A History of Magic” last June as part of plans to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Bloomsbury), the first book in the Harry Potter series.
Bloomsbury released two new books to accompany the exhibition: Harry Potter: A History of Magic, a £30 hardback with full-colour illustrations and the official book of the exhibition; and the paperback Harry Potter: A Journey Through a History of Magic (£12.99), which was “aimed at a family audience”.