The Kimbell's Going To Let You Play With Its iPads. Don't Break Them, OK?

Sometimes retrospective exhibitions are tough to get excited about -- sort of like flashback episodes in a television series. But with the influx of new technology available, institutions are able to dust off those old goodies and make them seem fresh and new.

Yeah, there's an app for that.

Those swollen brains at the Kimbell have developed an iPad app to coordinate with the museum's anniversary show, The Kimbell at 40: An Evolving Masterpiece which opens on October 7. The app focuses on the institution's conservation department, and shows visitors all of the quirky history behind each piece -- how this hand was touched-up, how the department held true to the artist's intention down to the last, x-rayable detail. You can also zoom in really closely to see the minutia mentioned in the bonus material. It's basically quirky nerd trivia that only folks who are really into museum inner-workings would usually care about, but here it's different. You get to borrow an iPad to use the dork app.

Yes, for some reason the Kimbell thinks we're a trustworthy lot, so it's got 40 loaner tablets that you can check out and tote around with you during your visit. Sure, you'll just use it to Instagram photos of Ife sculptures with silly thought bubbles over their heads, but you'll be holding the ultimate Director's Cut -- detailed history of 32 important works of art. Add on that this entire exhibition is presented for FREE, and you have no excuse to miss out. It runs through December 30.

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