Google’s Portkey to A History of Magic Exhibition

Mar 01, 2018

Posted by: Kim McChesney

Art, Education, Fun, Galleries, Interactive, J.K. Rowling, Jim Kay, News, Tech

After over four spellbindingly successful months at the British Library, Harry Potter: A History of Magic Exhibition came to a close this week. For fans who didn’t get the opportunity to see the Wizarding World brought to life through this historical perspective, now you’ll have the chance from the comfort of your own Burrow. The British Library has partnered with Google to present a virtual tour of the exhibit through online gallery platform Google Arts and Culture.  

Google has transported many of the magical books, manuscripts and artifacts displayed at the library to a dedicated Arts and Culture page including the Ripley Scroll, the recipe used by real life alchemist Nicolas Flamel to make the Philosopher’s Stone, a look at a Chinese Oracle Bone and a 7th century star chart, the oldest star atlas from any civilization. Many areas of the exhibit, which are divided by subjects taught at Hogwarts, are presented in this feature through magnified images, videos and a 360 degree panorama of many of the exhibit spaces. Visitors to the History of Magic Google page can even get up close and personal with the work of Harry Potter artist Jim Kay, as well as some of J.K. Rowling’s earliest drafts of the Harry Potter books.

To introduce the new cyber gallery, Google paired YouTubers, the Super Carlin Brothers with the exhibition’s curator Julian Harrison for an amusing and informative look at what visitors will experience on the page. Watch the video below to see if you know as much about Potter and the History of Magic as these guys:

You can also get an in depth review of the exhibit here from Leaky’s recent guest contributor, Dr Beatrice Groves, Research Fellow in Renaissance English at the University of Oxford, who had the opportunity to experience firsthand this convergence of real world history of magic and our favorite fictional story.

For Muggles across the pond, the actual exhibit will be relocating to the New York Historical Society October 5, 2018-January 27, 2019. In the meantime you can visit Harry Potter: A History of Magic Exhibition on the Google Arts and Culture page here. Let us know what you think of the tour!

The Leaky Cauldron is not associated with J.K. Rowling, Warner Bros., or any of the individuals or companies associated with producing and publishing Harry Potter books and films.