Holographic, international and interactive.
The future is in programming. I like what Glen Lowry said recently on this subject, so I'll re-quote him here: "If the 20th century was primarily about collecting, I believe the 21st is about programming."[Foreclosed: Rehousing the American Dream] is not about collecting anything. It's about engaging in serious research that results in vibrant public programs. Our goal is not so much to be the change agent, but rather, to create the kind of conversation that might lead at some future date to change by addressing critically important problems that engage specialists within the field as well as a more general public."
The twentieth-century challenge to the art object seems to promise a twenty-first-century challenge to museums. But if, as so many observers seem to predict these days, the modern museum in response transforms into a new sort of archive--one whose emphasis is in experience, documentation, and interactivity--then it will be as much a response to developments in intellectual property law as it is to Joseph Beuys. So who knows: It would be difficult to look at a curio cabinet during the Victorian age and predict the rise of authorship and the Museum of Modern Art. And I don't imagine MoMA will change, much. But looking at services like Spotify, I can only guess at the legal battles that will shape the future of intellectual property and the future-museums that result. My very best guess is that as our phones continue to change dramatically, museums won't change much at all, and museums will become all the more precious to people for it.
I think (hope) that museums in the future will present opportunities for more technologically mediated forms of participation/interaction while continuing to maintain occasions for the traditional means of engagement as well. Visitors could be as plugged-in as they like—interacting with the art on view through social networks, learning more through their handheld, perhaps even creating their own art/content onsite—but at the same time, listen to curators speak, read wall labels, and attend lectures. I think the tricky thing moving forward will be balancing a museum’s institutional authority with the increasingly level playing field created through new technologies and the ever-growing cultural expectations for personalization, sharing, etc.
Their structures will become increasingly vertical as space in cultural destinations becomes more limited. Museum architects will be forced to confine their visions to the tall and narrow, which will produce some truly breathtaking skylines. Exhibits will be organized to reflect an interdisciplinary approach, with curators pulling from all eras of art history. Shows will not be centered around a single artist or small group of artists, bit rather a multitude of artists using a wide range of media where the focus will be to shed light on new ways of thinking.
First, museums will continue to be repositories of objects which have been passed down from the history throughout the history of art. Those objects will continue to need to be cared for and conservation methods will be needed to be developed for all the new objects which are created. Museums will continue to be institutions where art and artists who are considered the world's finest will be celebrated and studied. Second, there will be much greater access to collections through the use of technology. You will be able to purchase holographic representations of objects or even exhibitions and be able to have virtual representations available for your home. Or you will be able to purchase memberships whereby you will have special HD access to collections via the net. Third, you will be able to attend any conference or group study which interests you that is taking place throughout the world through your computer. Museum professionals will be able to create these conferences and join other professionals in other museums, and the public will have access to this tremendous networking system, again, probably through a subscription or membership. There will be much greater opportunity to learn from scholars and to meet people who have similar interests in art around the world, and much greater opportunity to view art work at a much more refined level of reproduction than is available today through the internet and books.
in the future, there will be art museum-flying cars
Museums are a place to view artwork. The problem is space is limited and the number of artworks in most collections is growing. How this problem is addressed will shape the future of museums.
I'll be able to do what I've always wanted to do: touch the art
They'll emphasise the viewers physical relationship to an artwork, giving more space to each work to breathe. And they'll serve wine in the cafe.
Museums are places we go to experience things that have no other place in our daily life, we go there to be with beauty and ideas, and to be with other people, but I think in the end we're mostly going to put ourselves in situations that makes us feel, think, and see differently, whether that's interacting with paintings or sculptures, or high tech components, or people. The recent wave of participatory performance, in NYC especially, shows us that interaction is increasingly important in museums, but not just in the buzzword-y digital way (although perhaps in the buzzword-y social practice way)? So I think in the future art museums will keep on the game to surprise us with experiences, be they interventionist and participatory in real time and space or immersive and transcendent in digital time and space. But the best kind of art museums will do all that while remembering, and helping us as visitors remember that a tiny drawing can be more immersive mentally than 3-D, that an ephemeral object can teach us as much about ourselves and the world as a workshop, and that form evolves and folds back on itself but it is nothing without content.
in the future, every museum will be world-famous for fifteen minutes.
Quiet. I hope that's not lost. I can look at a screen anywhere I am now. I can't imagine I'd prefer to do that as I walk around. As backstory, maybe, but let me do it on the device in my own pocket, so I can take it away with me if I decide that I'm more fascinated with the work in front of me. Be open all night. Like a dating site, maybe I could summon a docent to walk me around on a scheduling application. "I'm heading over and would like to get into X." I would pay quite a bit for that. I'm sure we could all abuse that system. It'd likely devolve into a dating platform, as these things all do. But let's see.
Augmented reality will help add context to museum objects. And I'm not talking about holding your phone up to look at a painting, I'm talking about info embedded in your eyeglasses that brings up interesting and relevant tidbits of information as you spend time looking at each work, noticing where your eye wanders on the object and serving up related info that complements your unique viewing experience. They'll also continue evolving to become more social spaces -- places not only for looking at and contemplating art, but for individual and collective art-making, and discussing larger social and cultural issues. Museums will be the cultural stewards of the (past and) future.
In the future, art museums will have lots of rooms with tall ceilings and self-healing walls to ease installation clean-up. There will be lots more screens as most of the art works will be videos or will have digital components. Museum visitors will be able to interact with almost all the artworks by speaking or with various interactive devices. There will be lots more beeps and robot voices.