A proposal for interacting with information in the Spurlock Museum’s Parthenon room. Purely theoretical, and thus ignoring concerns of cost. The interactive version of this proposal is available by clicking “Launch Project.” Unfortunately, the site is not responsive, as it was only made to better demonstrate my idea. For this reason, it behaves poorly on smaller resolution screens and devices. It’s recommended that you view it with a full size monitor.
The initial idea for change:
My instinct when entering the Parthenon room was always to immediately walk around the perimeter, viewing each casting one by one, hoping that important figures or events in the sculpture would be pointed out to me along the way, but disappointed by the lack of information. I wanted my proposal to cater to that instinct. As for the type of content that should be featured in the Parthenon room, my group agreed that it should be aspects that give insight to the culture, or important cultural figures or deities. Doing so promotes the museum’s goal of culturally enlightening the community, and caters to interests of the average museum-goer.
As the viewer walks directly in front of a section of frieze, certain information is always available for the user as long as they remain physically in front of it: the identifying location of the frieze section (ex.28 West), and a highlighted object of importance (if available, and lighted by projector). This identifying information is displayed on screens below the frieze, and disappears when the viewer moves on to another frieze section. More detailed information about the highlighted artifacts or features is hidden until the viewer more closely approaches the frieze section. This includes most text descriptions, which should highlight cultural associations, and connections that can be drawn to the artifact itself. Paragraphs of text tend to overwhelm and discourage viewers, so my group believed that details should only appear once the viewer has expressed heightened interest in the artifact, as measured by their moving closer to it.