Dick van Dijk is Creative Director at Waag Society. Waag Society is an Amsterdam based Medialab investigating the interplay of culture and technology in relation to society, education, culture and healthcare. Waag Society wishes to make a contribution to the design of the information society by looking at the possibilities of people, their creativity and culture. Part of his role at Waag Society is creating interactive concepts, through design research and user involvement, and monitoring the development of the actual ‘thing’. He is mostly interested in the crossover between virtual and physical interactions, in creating a narrative space. Dick is currently involved in research & design projects such meSch, in which designers, technologists and heritage professionals co-design novel platforms for the creation of tangible exhibits at heritage sites, and RICHES that focusses on new relationships between heritage institutions and the audience. He has spoken and lectured on (location based) storytelling, interaction design, playful learning and co-creation. Dick is co-author of several publications, among others Users-as-designers, Waarde van Verbondenheid and CONNECT – Design for an Empathic Society. Dick has a background in Art and Business Economics.
“Creative approaches can create a different kind of dialogue, bringing new and surprising perspectives to the table.”
Merel van der Vaart is a PhD candidate at the University of Amsterdam with a love for practical museum work. In her research, she explores if technology can occupy a useful space somewhere between objects and visitors, facilitating engagement and a richer museum experience. She is currently based at the Allard Pierson Museum, the archaeology museum of the University of Amsterdam, but has experience working with diverse collections and heritage sites, including local history, medical history, art and science. Most recently she was Associate Curator of Public History at the Science Museum, London, where she worked on various online & on-site co-creative projects involving the history of Science & Technology. In her spare time Merel is editor of museumeducatie.nl and bread baking enthusiast.
“Technology is not exciting. What’s exciting is how we use technology as one of many tools to facilitate a richer, more engaging museum experience for a wide variety of people.”
There is a notable need for museums and cultural heritage sites to engage visitors
in different ways. Within the meSch project, we take the stance that materiality complements and completes cognition and therefore a personally meaningful and sensorily rich experience with museum exhibits and places can greatly improve both the visitors’ experience and their appreciation for the museum’s cultural values. By empowering cultural heritage professionals with a technological platform to help them creating their own interactive, smart and tangible exhibitions, meSch aims at making the encounter of digital and material more sustainable in museums and at favouring the creation of a do-it-yourself community that shares experiences and learns from each other, grows and develops over time, inspired by concurrent developments in new technology.
The main goal of meSch is designing an infrastructure that supports cultural heritage
professionals in the preparation of step-by-step ‘recipes’ to create tangible, smart
exhibits and augmented spaces. Ingredients to such recipes include the appropriate
description of digital information to be associated to objects and locations in an exhibition, as well as the detailed specification of how visitors’ movements and actions can activate the contextualized presentation of that content. To facilitate adoption, we aim at encouraging the reuse of recipes over their creation from scratch. In the workshop we will present the current efforts in the meSch project, discuss the needs and possibilities for a DIY approach to interactivity in the museum, and try out the meSch tools.
Cultural Heritage in Virtual Worlds
Kelly Mostert is leading the interactive TV pilot in Europeana Space, which aims to promote the re-use of audiovisual content in an interactive TV setting. She is also involved in several incubator and networking efforts to help SMEs in the creative industries advance with new technology and research outcomes. After an internship with VPRO’s documentary platform npodoc.nl she wrote her thesis on the technological imaginary that shapes the medium of television, with the Dutch Public Broadcasting organisation NPO as case study. For the Netherlands Institute of Sound and Vision she developed the Mine Explorer for Oculus Rift and is looking to help creative start-ups innovate through partnerships with cultural institutes.
“Imagination is not only the uniquely human capacity to envision that which is not, and therefore the fount of all invention and innovation. In its arguably most transformative and revelatory capacity, it is the power that enables us to empathize with humans whose experiences we have never shared.” – J.K. Rowling
How does VR enrich cultural heritage, and vice versa? The CLICKNL Cultural Heritage network has initiated a cross-over project with 3D and VR start-ups to illustrate the value of cultural heritage for the creative industries. During this improvisation session you will be prompted to think of your collections as cultural experiences: how do you propose to engage the public with your content? We will explore examples and possibilities of 3D modelling and virtual exhibitioning for inspiration. Most digital heritage content is in 2D, so we will also be looking at ways on how to use heritage materials as semi-finished products (‘half-fabrikaten’) in virtual reality.
This session is part of the CLICKNL cross-over Create VIRTUAL, which will continue beyond DISH 2015 to set up a network event between heritage institutions and digital start-ups. With this effort we hope to connect each other, and show the CLICKNL crowd (and subsequently, policy makers) that cultural heritage is key to fuelling the imagination of creative producers and creating success stories for both cultural institutions and 3D professionals.
Come join this session for some creative thinking, updates on the state of the art of VR, and inspiring ways to use our shared cultural heritage. Create your virtual heritage!