Update 09/09/2010: Nina Simon posted this post as a guest post on her (amazing) Museum 2.0 blog. Thanks!
Last weekend my museum presented itself at the Uitmarkt in Amsterdam. The Uitmarkt is an annual festival that opens the new cultural year. Instead of handing out flyers about our upcoming expositions, we decided to ask the visitors to contribute to our ongoing project the National Vending Machine. The National Vending Machine is a travelling exposition that tells the historical and personal story behind everyday objects. All these objects and stories together we call our ‘community of objects’.
I thought it was a perfect chance to put one of the ideas in Nina Simon’s book The Participatory Museum to the test. Her case study about Structured Dialogue in the Signtific Game in chapter 3 describes a project where people engaged in conversation online about wild ideas. For me the beauty of the Signtific Game lies in the way people are guided by a select number of possible responses to a wild idea. This structures dialogue and makes it more productive.
We translated this online game to an offline activity around everyday objects. I believe it worked brilliantly. Over the course of the weekend a small team (three people each day) engaged in conversation with hundreds of people, individually or in groups and encouraged them to contribute to our community of objects with personal stories and new objects.Read More »