In recent years, the digitization of museums and the progressive introduction of 2.0 tools in art and culture centers have led to new forms of exploration of permanent and temporary exhibitions. Through the Internet users can look for artistic creations that are spread around the world, explore the themes of cultural centers or find print books.
Virtual exhibitions are a first step in the horizon of creativity and interaction that are allowed by digital tools and devices.
Here are four styles ranging from simple to more complex “virtual ecosystems”.
The J.M.W. Turner retrospective at the National Gallery of Arts, is not particularly sophisticated, but exemplifies a type of exhibition that constitutes a first virtual storage way: simulation of physical space in which the user chooses what work can be seen. A simple and easy idea to understand without an ellaborated route.
Tim Burton’s exhibition at MOMA: Conceived from its origin as a physical and virtual exhibition, in which the website complements what the user can enjoy at the museum. It contains interactive elements, a specific design and videos and “making of” the exhibition. It is a way of conceiving the creative process as an expository device with varying degrees of interactivity.
The Smithsonian is in itself a complex network of virtual exhibitiosn. It contains cameras, key themes in museums throughout the U.S. and is constantly updated with other cultural entities linked in a network. We selected one of the tours in U.S. history, the African American Cultural Heritage, for its combination of audiovisual archives and the high educational content. The Smithsonian sets here a type of itinerary designed explicitly for the online user.
The Thyssen Museum’s permanent collection also provides a virtual tour, in this case for its permanent collection that mimics the route you can take a visitor, watching each of their works with AudioPlayer. Timelines are also outstanding, as they are extremely didactical.