introduction as interface
activating the exhibition threshold with multisensory design
Published May 2021
Although the threshold experience of an exhibition can take many forms, the introduction wall itself is notoriously known to manifest as large bodies of text. Research shows that successful interpretation within a museum exhibition requires multimodalities as entry points to relevance and resonance. This project attempted to utilize a multisensory design approach to better incorporate the introduction wall as part of the larger threshold experience. In the context of the paper, the focus will be on art museums in particular as the majority of interpretation within the exhibition space relies on didactic panels.
To test visitor engagement within the threshold experience, a series of observations constructed a comparative analysis between that of the standard introduction wall and a redesigned threshold experience. Participants were observed in the gallery space prior to and post the prototyped design. This data was then analyzed and translated to reflect levels or ranges of engagement in order to understand if the design intervention reflected any alterations. The results showed an increase in engagement due to the prototyped design intervention, suggesting its positive effects on visitor interpretation.