This issue contains articles about sensory engagement in museums and galleris, that move the viewer out of their comfort zone.
In December 2014 the National Gallery of Victoria unveiled a hanging installation by Brazilian artist Ernesto Neto. The artwork hovers several feet above the ground and consists of labyrinthine, tunnel-like structures of crocheted rope for visitors to climb into and explore. Titled The Island Bird, the installation is one of several artworks recently acquired by the NGV.
Sensory experiences can move us out of our comfort zone and make us negotiate what we thought we knew, differently.
Dialogue in the Dark has not visited Australia yet: http://www.dialogue-in-the-dark.com
Brendan Smith & Thorsten Kaeding (page 2)
Experiencing Collections Through Sound
The Art of Sound exhibition developed by the National Film and Sound Archive in collaboration with regional art galleries, presented a palette of fifty sounds that were paired with artworks from regional collections. INSITE spoke with Brendan Smith and Thorsten Kaeding about the exhibition premise, the partnerships that made it work, the technology that was used, and the ideas for other displays that it has generated.
The Art of Sound including a full palette listing and gallery selections: http://nfsa.gov.au/visit-us/exhibitions-presentations/previous-exhibitions/artofsound/
The Front Room: http://nfsa.gov.au/calendar/event/5680-front-room/
A Taste of Sound: https://www.facebook.com/BrokenHillRegionalArtGallery
Siobhan Dennis (page 4)
Living in a Sensory World
The exhibition Living in a Sensory World: Stories from People with Blindness and Low Vision toured seven museums in three states between October 2011 and March 2014. Siobhan Dennis tells us about the exhibition, the objects and the technology that made it a unique experience.
For more about the exhibition including audio guides visit: http://www.visionaustralia.org/about-us/who-we-are-and-what-we-do/our-history/living-in-a-sensory-world-exhibition
Neall Kriete (page 6)
In 2013 the Australian Chamber Orchestra launched ACO VIRTUAL to create an orchestra experience for new audiences. The installation features projections of twelve musicians that allow visitors to listen or play with the Orchestra. Neall Kriete explains how and why the project was developed.
For ACO VIRTUAL visit: www.aco.com.au/about/acovirtual
Joel Checkley (page 7)
A Sensory Experience on Film
Over the past six months, in collaboration with Belinda Ensor from Museums Australia (Victoria) and Culture Victoria, filmmaker Joel Checkley had the opportunity to enter the respective worlds of the Deaf and Blind communities of Victoria to make a suite of films called A Sensory Experience. Look out for the A Sensory Experience films coming up on Culture Victoria: http://www.cv.vic.gov.au
Nigel Steel (page 8)
In the Trenches: The WW1 Centenary exhibition
Britain’s Imperial War Museums (IWM) is opening the WW1 Centenary Exhibition to mark the centenary of the First World War. On 18 April the exhibition will have its world premiere at Melbourne Museum. Historian Nigel Steel tells us about the exhibition and the strategies that are used to dramatise the personal stories of soldiers and their families for contemporary audiences. For more information visit: http://www.iwm.org.uk/visits/iwm-london
Visit the WW1 Centenary Exhibition at Melbourne Museum at: http://ww1exhibition.com.au
Roving Curator 2015 Recipients Announced (page 10)
The Roving Curator Program supports the development of quality cultural exhibitions in Victoria. The program is administered by Museums Australia (Victoria) with funds received from Creative Victoria. http://www.mavic.asn.au/exhibition_services
Cameron Auty (page 11)
Digitisation and Privacy
Since its launch in 2009 Victorian Collections has provided a platform for hundreds of community collecting organisations to share and preserve their catalogue records online. The Victorian Collections team travels the state discussing digitisation with museums, historical societies and other groups, and has encountered some interesting cases in which the desire to share information online raises questions of privacy. Workshops in digitsation are held throughout the year, browse the calendar at: http://www.mavic.asn.au/events or visit Victorian Collections at: http://victoriancollections.net.au
Apps & Online
This INSITE column lists some links to websites or apps relating to collections or museum practice. It is compiled for INSITE by the Digital and Emerging Technologies team at Museum Victoria. The items mentioned are information listings and have not been tested or reviewed by the authors or MA (Vic).
The reopened Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum is generating a lot of interest among museum technologists, particularly its interactive personal device called the Pen. In the Immersion Room, visitors use the Pen to view projected wallpapers and sketch and project their own designs.
A monthly video series about the collections of the American Museum of Natural History.
Two great resources for cultural institutions from the New York Public Library: 20 Ways to Make People Fall in Love With Your Instagram and Your Instagram Doesn’t Have to Suck.
UK’s Culture 24 compiles ‘games, collections, videos, stories, homework help and family days out from museums and galleries.’
Earth Primer App
Described as ‘a science book for playful people’ this iOS app looks like a geology museum inside your iPad.