Newport Art Museum Feedback Loop
User Exerperience Design, User Inteface Design, Prototyping, Web Development
The Card Prototype
Our first prototype set out to test the idea of prompts in the gallery at all. We weren’t sure that our basic assumptions about the project held. We assumed that visitors would be interested and able to respond to interpretive prompts about the artwork. We also assumed that they wouldn’t be survey-fatigued, and wouldn’t feel intimidated by an ask for feedback and reflection that they might feel unqualified for.
Together with curatorial staff, we developed a series of prompts based on artwork currently on view in the Museum’s shapes of birds exhibit. We placed these prompts on simple, 6″ x 8″ cards, and invited visitors to take a pack of 4 with them around the gallery.
The Digital Prototype
We designed and implemented a web application which allows us to present our prompts on ipads around the museum space. Using a free and open source technology stach, we build a system that allows us to present prompts and capture textual responses along with some optional personal information: email, names, and instagram handles.
Our goal was to create an easier data management experience for the Museum staff without compromising the feedback experience.
The Engagement Prototype
With our digital prototype in place and working, we set out to connect the feedback we had collected to artists. Our goal was to see if we could motivate artists to start direct conversations with our visitors. We identified two engagement prototype approaches.
First, we wanted artists to be invested in the prompts in the gallery. We invited 4 artists to produce a set of prompts for the Feedback Loop. At the end of these two-week cycles, we compile the feedback we obtained into collections: documents that are sent to artists. These collections contain all public feedback we collected, as well as contact information we collected. Our goal is to convert these collections into direct conversation between artists and visitors.
Second, we wanted to stimulate direct interaction between artists and visitors via social platforms. We added an instagram handle section to the Feedback Loop, so that visitors could leave this information if they chose to. We plan to connect visitors who leave insightful comments with artists using the @newportartmuseum instagram as a mediary.