Done the app? Well, now see the objects!

Cabinet in the foyerWe’ve recently reclaimed a small area of the Museum foyer to display some of our lovely Buxton objects. Many of these feature in our Buxton Waters app, but we’ve also managed to squeeze in some additional objects too.

Well Dressing programmesBuxton Crescent

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On display there are souvenir programmes for the Well Dressing Festivals, prints and ceramics, a miniature of Martha Norton and an array of Buxton Water bottles.

We’ve also put some of our favourite Buxton pictures up, including David Russell’s Exterior of Buxton Museum and Art Gallery and a watercolour of the Thermal Baths from c. 1850s.

Exterior of Buxton Museum and Art Gallery (DERSB 2006.33)

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HistoryPin

We are experimenting with getting our collections out and about on different online platforms. We currently use twitter, facebook , three blogs and a YouTube channel, with a varying degree of regularity and success.

Our newest venture is HistoryPin. HistoryPin allows users to ‘pin’ images, audio and text to maps, creating singular points of interest or curated trails. Our first foray has been to pin the images and texts from our ‘Stories of Shopping’ onto Spring Gardens in Buxton. Let us know what you think.

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We are hoping to add audio soon and also create trails using the content from our other apps.   It is early days for us, but it would be great if we could get more of our collections accessible online. Reading Museum have an impressive array of pinned collections and have created tours such as their ‘Three B’ tour which takes in flower Bulbs, Beer and Biscuits.

We are now racking our brains for suitably alliterative tour names… Wells, Water and Women? Flints, Firesteels and Faunal remains? We’ll let you know how we get on.

The Journey Begins…

Welcome to Collections in the Landscape!

Over the coming months we’re hoping to develop some really exciting ideas at Buxton Museum & Art Gallery. We want to give visitors more choice and more control in how they access and experience our collections.

The concept of the project is to link objects in the museum collections to places in the landscape. Where did that fossil form? Where was that arrowhead discovered? Where did the artist sit to sketch that view? This will be achieved through digital media in the landscape as well through media inside the museum galleries.

Visitors enjoyed seeing real images during 'Pictures in the Landscape'. Will digital work as well?

The ‘Pictures in the Landscape’ successfully brought real images to the landscape. The next step is to offer even more content digitally.

Digital versus Physical

Without wanting to sound clichéd, we’d like to try to blur the boundaries between the digital and physical visit. In the case of somebody who is only ever going to visit us online, don’t we need to ensure they can get as much from this experience as possible?

There’s a rapidly growing argument that says museums need to change to meet the needs of the 21st Century to ensure they continue to be relevant. Like it or not, the future is looking more and more digital. I’m told that by 2020 around 50% of the public will be using smartphones and, as data services improve, so will the speed and online capabilities of these devices.

Of course, whilst this is all very exciting, we cannot escape the fact that museums are centred on real objects. As a result we’ll also be ensuring that the project will improve the displays at the museum with the inclusion of more objects and more choice in terms of how visitors access information whilst in the galleries.

Follow the Story

We’ve been awarded a Stage One Pass from the Heritage Lottery Fund to pilot ideas and develop the Collections in the Landscape project. If successful, we hope to start implementing our plans towards the end of 2014.

This blog will track the work of the project team as we collect ideas and develop pilot schemes. We want to hear what you think about the work we are doing or your own thoughts about how museums should or could embrace the digital age.

Navigate around the site to find out how you can get involved or to find out more information. Alternatively, simply leave us a comment below. Collections in the Landscape – let’s start the conversation.

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