What does the ideal future museum look like? Let’s look at some of the possibilities!
When we look at the changes that have happened to the museums and heritage sector since the turn of the Millenium, it becomes clear that attitudes and the way they approach so many of the fundamentals of running a museum or cultural space have undergone huge shifts. Well, in some ways. As Laura Wilkinson, Programme Director of the Museum of London’s New Museum argues, some museums have been resistant to changing with the times:
Whilst museums as institutions have stayed static the world around us has radically shifted. We are living in times of accelerated change. Growing social inequality, major environmental issues and the digital revolution are all affecting the role of museums as part of the cultural fabric of our society.
Laura Wilkinson, Programme Director, New Museum, Museum of London
So, how long will it be until this resistance to the changing museum and culture landscape becomes unsustainable, and what will museums have to do in order to keep up with the constantly shifting world around them? Let’s envisage an idea of a future museum that could be just around the corner!
Expect technology to proliferate even further
There’s been no shortage of opposition to the widespread adoption of technology in the museum.
However, there are quickly becoming fewer and fewer reasons to resist the proliferation of tech in museums without risking getting left behind your competitors.
That’s not to say that physical exhibits and artefacts don’t have a place in museum spaces, but we’re reaching a place where museums and cultural venues are adopting an approach where physical exhibits and interactive technology are used to cooperatively enhance their visitor’s experience.
We embraced this approach with our project at Woodhorn museum’s Winding House No2. The museum wanted to embrace technology in their exhibit without detracting from the heritage of the space.
The solution we created three unique projections that were used to provide information and historical context to visitors, without replacing any of the physical aspects of the exhibition.
You can read more about our work on the Winding House No 2 Exhibition in our case study!
There won’t be one solution for everyone
It’s vital to keep in mind when considering what a future museum may hold in terms of new technology that there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution. Every museum is unique, and so are their requirements.
So, it’s important to consider which aspects of your museum would benefit most from being enhanced by technology. Not sure where to begin with this? Here are a few key issues that technology could solve for your museum in the future!
Saving space: Do you ever feel like your museum is lacking in space to fit all of the objects and artefacts you want it to? This is a common issue for museums, particularly independent museums which often struggle with space.
Improving visitor experience: No matter how futuristic your museum is, your visitors need to have a great experience while they’re there! A great way to ensure this is to ask them at the point of experience, when their impressions of your museum are fresh in their minds. A great way to do this is to ask them to provide feedback using an interactive kiosk.
Creating an immersive experience: Technology such as video walls and projectors can be used to create immersive, vivid exhibitions which can exist on their own or as an accompaniment to an existing exhibit.
As you can tell, there’s a lot to think about when considering all of the elements that could make up the ideal future museum. But if this feels a little bit intimidating, don’t worry. We’re here to help you through every stage of your museum’s digital transformation from initial concepts, through to installation and after-sales support.
Get in touch using the button below to discuss your ideas for taking your museum into the future!