A radical rethink on how to attract audiences

A radical rethink on how to attract audiences

Sometimes the more you know, the less you see. There are about 18 pieces of data that arts organisations typically gather from their ticketing systems – information such as age, gender, postcode and planning horizon.

‘It tells you the what, it doesn’t tell you the why,’ said Lucy Shorrocks, Senior Consultant with Morris Hargreaves McIntyre (MHM). ‘We work with lots of organisations that are snow blind with the data they have got but they actually are still trying to find insights into how to connect with audiences.’

More Than 600,000 People Have Already Visited the Smithsonian’s African American History Museum

More Than 600,000 People Have Already Visited the Smithsonian’s African American History Museum

In the nearly three months since it’s opened, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture has shown no signs of becoming any less busy. In fact, the Smithsonian says, more than 600,000 visitors have already passed through its doors, and those hard-to-obtain timed passes to get in are completely booked through next March. Read more

The Most Influential Curators of 2016

The Most Influential Curators of 2016

In 2016’s turbulent social and political climate, the exhibitions that resonated did not shy away from the fraught issues of our times. Informed by the insights of Artsy’s editors, and bolstered by data from UBS’s art news app Planet Art, the curators of these shows emerged as making the most impact on the institutional landscape this year. Presented here in no specific order, these curators created shows that reflected the nuances of human experience in today’s world, expanded the parameters of art, or engaged in revisionist histories, redressing systemic biases and enabling us to see past and present art practices anew. Many of those on the list also put the artist first, empowering creatives to do what they do best—helping us to see our realities, and each other, more clearly. Read more

In Conversation With the Architect Behind the Restoration of Mumbai’s Famous Rajabai Clock Tower

In Conversation With the Architect Behind the Restoration of Mumbai’s Famous Rajabai Clock Tower

Conservation architect Vikas Vedprakash Dilawari is the brains behind the restoration of several Mumbai gems, including the Bhau Daji Lad museum, Flora Fountain, Esplanade House, Alpaiwala Museum and the Lal Chimney Compound. Architects, located in Jawahar Nagar, Goregaon West; the company is owned by Vikas Vedprakash Dilawari, a 48-year-old Conservation Architect. The office is filled with young employees, some are busy working on their computers, others are taking prints and still others are rushing into the cabin inside for a discussion with their boss. Read more

BOCA RATON MUSEUM OF ART APPOINTS LANYA SNYDER ASSISTANT CURATOR

BOCA RATON MUSEUM OF ART APPOINTS LANYA SNYDER ASSISTANT CURATOR

The Boca Raton Museum of Art in Florida announced today that it has appointed Lanya Snyder as assistant curator. In her new role, Snyder will focus on the museum’s contemporary art programming and expanding its photography holdings.

Snyder, who studied photography at Bard College and who has organized exhibitions and shown her work at White Columns in New York, initially joined the museum in January as a curatorial assistant and has been working on developing its annual photography forum, with the goal of presenting work by emerging to mid-career photographers. The first exhibition in the series opens next fall. Read more

Please Turn On Your Phone in the Museum

Please Turn On Your Phone in the Museum

Earlier this year, at the Whitney Museum of American Art, in New York, visitors paraded through the fifth floor to see a retrospective dedicated to the abstract expressionist Frank Stella. Although many of the works on display were four or five decades old, in some ways the show felt tailor-made for the Instagram age: a riot of vibrant colors and textures, 20-foot-long reliefs, and sculptures as jagged and dynamic as 3-D graffiti.

Visitors one busy Saturday afternoon stopped in front of artworks, lined up shots on their phones, snapped a few photos, and then moved on to the next piece. Some paused briefly to consider a particular painting; more stared down at their screens, furiously filtering. Few noticed an elderly gentleman sitting on a bench in one of the smaller rooms, watching the crowd engage with his work. The only visitor in the gallery not clutching a phone was Stella himself.

Museum directors are grappling with how technology has changed the ways people engage with exhibits. But instead of fighting it, some institutions are using technology to convince the public that, far from becoming obsolete, museums are more vital than ever before. Here’s what those efforts look like. Read more

Museum of Modern Art Releases Free Online Archive of Every Exhibit Since 1929

Museum of Modern Art Releases Free Online Archive of Every Exhibit Since 1929

Since the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) started its collection in 1929, thousands of worthwhile projects have made their way through its doors. Now, over 3500 of those exhibitions from its past and present can be enjoyed online, Open Culture reports.

The free digital exhibition archive spans from the museum’s very first exhibition—a showcase of post-Impressionist artwork—to recent installations, such as Picasso Sculptures andJackson Pollock: A Collection Survey, 1934–1954. The collection even includes the MoMA’scinema series, which highlights important film movements and directors. Read more

Can Big Data Make for Better Exhibitions?

Can Big Data Make for Better Exhibitions?

In 2013, Apple introduced iBeacon, a technology able to track smartphone users with incredible accuracy. Even better, the apps running on those phones could receive messages from special Bluetooth transmitters known as “beacons.” This brick-and-mortar form of GPS ushered in a new era of automated shopping. Tracking customers in real-time allows companies to decipher demographics and individual interests. Using this data to ping product notifications and coupons to consumers has taken the guesswork out of retail. But although iBeacon has been a boon for commerce, it also has the potential to dramatically bolster our understanding of how we engage with art. Read more