Digital Futures for the Art Museum

5 January 2022

We’ve developed a new course! FILM 511: Imagining Digital Futures for the Art Museum is a collaboration with the Department of Film and Media led by faculty member Gabriel Menotti and Danuta Sierhuis, Agnes’s Digital Development Coordinator. The course is designed to get students from across disciplines involved in the pilot Youth Advisory Council of Agnes. There are students from English, Psychology, History, Computing, Film & Media, Art History, Global Development and Health Sciences. Guided by the ethos of Agnes Reimagined, participating students explore how a contemporary art institution works from the inside, delving into areas such as curatorial, collections and public programs through a digital lens in more accessible and inclusive ways.

“I’m always on the lookout for opportunities to get students involved with situations outside of the classroom. I find that this is one of the best ways for them to learn,” says Menotti. “Moreover, I think this sort of project-driven approach makes students more responsible, autonomous, and open to each other’s ideas and collaboration.”

In close dialogue with Agnes’s team, students work in multidisciplinary groups to identify areas of development for the digital museum of the 21st-century. “They are researching, brainstorming and prototyping online collections portals as co-creative spaces, innovations in digital publishing, uses for AR/VR and mixed reality experiences, and interdisciplinary digital lab spaces within museums,” says Sierhuis. This kind of experience directly impacts student Rachel Salem- Wiseman’s future goals as she wants to “one day work at an art gallery, curate exhibitions and develop gallery programming.” She believes that “it is important to understand how technology can be used to further the goals and accessibility of the arts.”

This work informs and shapes Digital AGNES and a new, media-based exhibition gallery and experimental curatorial platform planned for Agnes Reimagined. Students engage with Agnes in this pivotal year of change as our future-oriented vision sets a new paradigm for museological practices.

Importantly, all participating students are supported with a stipend from the Queen’s Experience Ventures initiative with $825!

Nasrin Himada, Associate Curator, Academic Outreach and Community Engagement takes part in a discussion about access to the works in our care following a talk from Jenn Nicoll, Collections Manager.

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