My research project
How can Augmented Reality on mobile devices enhance recreational activities for those with auditory impairments in museums and galleries?
Museums and galleries are traditionally visual environments, however, to attract a diverse audience exhibits are no longer just static displays. It has always been important for visitors to engage with art on an emotional level, as indicator of the arts success (van Passchen et al 2015; Winston et al 1992). To attract new and diverse audiences there is an ever-increasing menu to attract visitors: touch tours, talks, video, and even virtual and augmented reality experiences, facilitating a more sensual, cognitive and emotional visitor experience (Marques 201; tom Dieck and Jung, 20177).
The V&A, London, use physically interactive technology for some of their displays (Mannion, 2010) and temporary art installations. One exhibit, visitors place their feet on the markers on the floor, interacting with the video character to participate in a dance routine. In 2012 Tate Modern held an exhibition entitled “All Hail Damien Hirst”, visitors were able to view the effigy of Hirst floating above the turbine hall, with coins raining down around him, with audio playing. (Tate Modern, 2020) which can be viewed at a specially set up website; http://www.allhaildamienhirst.com/
Nevertheless, these new advances are, at times, making these venues less accessible for many audiences. Indeed, The Arts Council England (Mellor, 2019) now require museums and galleries to evidence how they are contributing to making the Creative Case for Diversity (Serota, 2019). This has been driven by the disability discrimination act 1995 and Equality Act 2010, which places a duty of care on service providers, to make all reasonable adjustments, by removing physical barriers to accessing their services by disabled people (Ginley, 2013). Service providers must not only consider how they are able to comply with the disability act, but how can they go further to attract diverse audiences. (Liarokapis,et al 2004).