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Designing exhibits
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Designing exhibits


This is the presentation I developed, and regularly tweak, for my lectures at Harvard on Exhbition Design.

This is the presentation I developed, and regularly tweak, for my lectures at Harvard on Exhbition Design.

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  • 1. Skills for an ExhibitDesignerDeborah J. Sovinee,Independent MuseumProfessional Ability to visualize Sketch Know how to build things Ability to work with a team Knowledge of materials CAD drawing or drafting Ability to translate abstract concepts into physical reality Presentation of ideas
  • 2. Stay Current!Read Trade magazinesKeep current on latest technologyGo to conferences, check out these organizations:ASTC Assoc. of Science-Technology Centers),AAM (American Assoc. of Museums),NEMA (New England Museum Assoc.).SIGGRAPH - Int’l Conference and Exhibition onComputer Graphics & Interactive TechniquesSEGD (Society for Environmental Graphic Design),USGBC (U.S. Green Building Council)Think Sustainable design
  • 3. Getting anIdea
  • 4. PROJECT Playing by the Rules Fishtank sketchCLIENT MUSEUM OF SCIENCE DESIGNER D. SOVINEE
  • 5. Virtual FishtankFinished exhibit with visitors
  • 6. Playing by the RulesSchematics
  • 7. Fireflies InteractiveOut of the welding shop and onto the floor
  • 8. Playing by the Rules & fishtank area dividerSketch to CAD drawing to finished installation
  • 9. Sharing theVision is NotAlways Easy
  • 10. Project TeamMembersProject ManagerExhibit DesignerContent DeveloperGraphic DesignerTechnical DesignerEducation LiasonShop RepMaintenance RepSometimes:Accessibility ConsultantScientific ExpertReps from other areas:Visitor services, security, conservator, marketing
  • 11. The VisitorExperienceExhibit designersprotect the exhibits butalso create a positiveexperience for ALL
  • 13. Universal Design in Museums: Hear, touch, smell,taste, see
  • 14. As much as possible is accessible, touchable, andtherefore better for everyone
  • 15. Content developer Goes berserkHow much information is too much?
  • 16. OBSERVATION SHEET FOR MAPPING THE COAST (BEAD CHAIN LOOP) Date: Time of day: Time spent: Visitor Information: #M___ Ages ___ / #F ____ Ages ______ Group type: Kids only Ì cx vtsƒ Ì qw q 3 rhq txË ` ƒ fÌ ÌPrototyping Fb q Ì gtt txË f Ì Bw Ì& gd XXXXXXX Bavd `wt 6 tÌ w Ìy h s se r` h ts 1t w y v t v… gd h hwÌ v b t r pdw e `Ë g Ì Look a the labe t l rVisitor Observation Read the labe out loud l r Look a island through view slot? t r Playedwith beadchain? r Started making a map? r Make it all the way around? r Look a the island from the top: t - before trying to draw it? - after trying to draw it? r Press button to stop motion? r Talk abou the a t ctivity What they say…
  • 17. Interactive PrototypesVarious stages
  • 18. Maintaining the Exhibit
  • 19. “Models” exhibitMagnet board solution
  • 20. “Green Trails”Prototype and installation at Cambridge City Hall Annex
  • 21. Developing a VisionResearchSketchesInput from visitors,clients,teammembers,marketing, etc.
  • 22. Quest for ImmortalityInitial Sketch to Installation
  • 23. Exhibit Concept DrawingsMixed media
  • 24. Sketches, storyboards, materialsvarious projects and proposals
  • 25. Exhibit DesignIndependent vs. In-houseKnowledge of business vs. knowledge of only museumsClient and visitor vs. just visitorHigher pay and less job security vs. lower pay and morejob securityRegarded as expert vs. as staffOut of pocket expenses high (conferences, etc.) vs. perkof the jobHarder to access expertise vs. in-house expertsGreater independence and control vs. less say inprojects, etc.Time is flexible but 24/7 vs. mostly set hours