According to Nina Simon, museums should be centers of social interaction and creativity. Too often, they force us to be merely a passive observer, able only to admire and witness. The ideal museum engages the audience, uses their comments, and allows them to create works of their own. Nina Simon's goal is to make every institution reach this utopian state.
The first step is to change the structure of our museums: Exhibits should be designed for interaction. People should be told to participate, and should feel good doing it. Comments should be promoted, shared, and implemented. And unity and involvement should be paramount; no more wandering by yourself, but real connection with others.
Museums belong to the public. Shouldn't they be all they can be? Nina Simon thinks so, and she has the formula to make it happen.
Nina Simon is an independent museum exhibit designer with experience in participatory design, gaming, and social media. She is the principal of Museum 2.0, a design firm that works with museums worldwide using social technology to create dynamic, audience-driven exhibitions and programs. Recent clients include the National Gallery of Denmark, the Monterey Bay Aquarium, the Experience Music Project, and the Denver Art Museum. Nina is an adjunct professor of Social Technology at the University of Washington Museology program, and she runs the Museum 2.0 blog. Previously, Nina served as curator at The Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose and was the Experience Development Specialist at the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C.
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