Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Museum 2.0: Brooklyn and Beyond

I went to the Brooklyn Museum over the weekend to see Judy Chicago's The Dinner Party, newly installed in the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art at the Brooklyn Museum. It was impressive and beautiful, as I had imagined it would be.

In the helpful little booklet that described each place setting and the woman to whom it was dedicated were the codes for the cell phone audio content. After dialing the gallery telephone number, the code provides access to audio that further explains each setting with comments by the artist, or a curator from the museum.

Cell phone tours are a fairly new concept, although the underlying purpose is nothing particularly different from traditional audio tours. But what is new is that visitors can also leave comments for each piece, and the museum plans to incorporate in some way these comments into future broadcasts.

This makes me wonder: where does the museum stand in the web 2.0 world of user-designed content? Can we (should we) take this idea further? Where is the appropriate place for a "playlist" or "rate this work"? Users who like Richard Diebenkorn also chose Mark Rothko..... Based on your artists' ratings, we recommend the work of Helen Frankenthaler.... In what ways can this approach be helpful?

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