Cultural museums today face interesting challenges: the preservation of artifacts, and the curation of experiences. With about 10% of artifacts ever on display, the impact of digital media has opened up the opportunities for digitization to allow for an open access to artifact collections, and the introduction of digital experiences.
In response to the visual nature of museums, this prototype exhibition aimed to use DIY methods of physical computing to create interactive reproductions of artifacts, that revealed digital stories and content upon discovery. Sensory-based interactions -- smells released upon opening an object, holding an object for an extended period of time, holding and revealing an audio-based experience -- allowed visitors to use all of their senses to engage with artifact-specific stories and knowledge.
Three prototypes were developed over the course of the project, illustrating various artifact stories through engaging multisensory responses. I worked alongside a multi-modal educational researcher, Melanie McBride, to develop natural perfumes that were "revealed" as part of the digital and physical interactions. 3D printing was used to add tactile experiences, using simple physical computing elements to reveal projected digital imagery and text based on where users were touching the artifact reproductions.
DIY methods were leveraged to create accessible and affordable means for prototyping multisensory interactives in museum organizations.
Speaking as part of a panel on multisensory exhibits, at the Museums and the Web Conference in Los Angeles, 2016.