IBM has partnered with the Louvre to help Europe’s most visited museum preserve its artwork and facilities, the company announced today.

Thanks to IBM’s intelligent management system, the Louvre Museum will be able to supervise repairs and maintenance in real time, while limiting their impact on its 8.8 million annual visitors.

If you have ever been to Paris, you have probably strolled through the Louvre’s huge galleries. Yet, chances are you haven’t noticed what’s going on behind the scenes and below your feet, where the museum’s huge reserve is located. Its inner workings are so big and impressive that this even inspired a documentary with a telling title: “Louvre City“.

Lagerraum im Louvre by chackie81 520x498 The Louvre is about to get smarter   with a little help from IBM

From Smarter Cities to Smarter Buildings

ibm logo 220x114 The Louvre is about to get smarter   with a little help from IBM

In this context, it is not surprising that the museum decided to rely on IBM for its management. After all, the IT company is also partnering with big cities in an effort to make them smarter (see our story on Rio de Janeiro’s Operations Center).

If it can work for a city, it can also work for a museum, and the Louvre hopes that software will help keep galleries open to the public as often as possible. While maintenance was managed by paper, digital data should help improve its efficiency, the department manager of its computerized maintenance management system, Metin Pelit, explains:

“Managing thousands of repairs, cleaning and maintenance visits per year to preserve the facilities and artwork while keeping the galleries available and accessible to visitors is a daunting undertaking. Thanks to IBM software, we’re able to visualize our entire infrastructure and make better, more informed decisions about when and how to respond to problems — and about when to proactively address a potential problem that we otherwise wouldn’t have seen coming.”

For data geeks like us, this could well be worth a visit of its own.