This 10-billion pixel scan of a Vermeer lets you zoom to infinity

We can guarantee you've never seen 'Girl with a Pearl Earring' like this.

Close-up of a painting.

You may have seen Johannes Vermeer's famous "Girl with a Pearl Earring" painting at some point, in fact, you may have even seen it lots of times.

Pool/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

No matter how many times you've seen the iconic portrait, we can guarantee you've never seen it as close as this insanely detailed, digital microscope-powered scan allows.




As highlighted by PetaPixel, this 10-gigapixel scan done by a company called Hirox in Europe gives a literally unprecedented look at Vermeer's most famous work, allowing viewers to zoom in down to 4.4 microns.


This is the first 10 billion pixel scan with a resolution of 93,205 x 108,565.


The scan is a panorama achieved by using a digital microscope and was actually pieced together from 9,100 separate pictures with the goal of assessing surface conditions and past restoration efforts.

The result is a hyper-detailed panorama that lets you delve into the tiny cracks and the intricacies of the brush strokes. And fortunately for us, it's all accessible online.

That means you can have fun zooming, and zooming, and zooming until you're basically face-to-canvas with Vermeer's work.

Images aren't just flat either. Scans of "Girl with a Pearl Earring" allow viewers to ogle the painting in 3D, manipulating swaths of the portrait to highlight the bumps and slopes of the canvas surface.

If "Girl with a Pearl Earring" isn't your style, we have even more good news. Mauritshuis, an art museum in the Hague where the famous Vermeer painting resides, has an entire Gigapixel tour of other works (though not quite as detailed), meaning you can get zooming on all sorts of historic works of art from home.

You know what that means...



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