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Last Updated: Sunday, 27 July, 2003, 23:35 GMT 00:35 UK
Art on demand at National Gallery
National Gallery
The National Gallery has been storing images of its collection
Copies of more than 900 works of art at the National Gallery are being made available at the flick of a switch as new technology is unveiled.

Masterpieces on display at the gallery have been captured on advanced digital cameras.

The images have stored on computer so that visitors can obtain a copy almost instantly.

Until now visitors were only able to get a small proportion of the gallery's treasures on traditional printed copies.

The gallery said it has taken two years to capture all 2,300 works of art.

The "print on demand" technology will allow visitors to browse through and print in reproduction quality A3, A4 and A5 size prints.

By 2005 the gallery hopes to have the whole collection available.

National Gallery spokeswoman Clare Gough said: "We are committed to making our paintings widely available to the public, so they can enjoy the beauty of these images in their own homes."

The reproductions are said to be of a very high quality. The artworks have been captured by a digital camera which scans the painting directly.

The images are printed by a Hewlett Packard DesignJet printer onto high quality durable paper.

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