Saturday, August 29, 2009

Museum Design Thought Experiment: Would/Would Not

After the roiling kerfuffle that came about after my recent "screens" posting, I started thinking about the automatic reactions that we all have about design/exhibit features in museums.

So I'd like to start a little "crowdsourcing" or museum design thought experiment for ExhibiTricks readers.

It's simple --- think about creating a brand new museum, now choose just one design/exhibit feature you absolutely WOULD include, and why, and one design/exhibit feature you absolutely WOULD NOT include in your wonderful new museum, and why.

Now write your WOULD/WOULD NOT new museum design/exhibit features in the "Comments" section below.

I'll start things out by putting my own WOULD/WOULD NOTs right here:

WOULD: I'd include a "FabLab" type space where visitors could use computerized (and non-computerized) design tools to create objects to take home. I'd do that because I think many museum experiences show people the "end products" (art objects, historical artifacts, phenomenological exhibits) without helping them appreciate the process(es) by which those products came about.

WOULD NOT: I would not create a traveling exhibit space in my new, idealized museum. The reason is that I think many museums' use of traveling exhibit spaces becomes either an institutional treadmill or crutch, and I think the time and resources usually spent on bringing in traveling shows (many of which are overpriced junk, but that's a different story ...) could be better utilized by developing exhibits/programming internally that stick around for more than three months.

Let's read your WOULD/WOULD NOTs in the "Comments" section below!

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