Museum as Content Aggregator and More

From a fascinating article in the Washington Post on Ralph Applebaum and his influence on museum design and practice:

In the course of a five-hour conversation in his office on the 29th floor of a downtown New York high-rise, Appelbaum, 66, throws out perhaps a dozen different definitions of what museums should do.

“Museums are essentially ethical constructs.”

“They are about the fabric and texture of our creativity . . .”

“They cure social amnesia . . . ”

“They teach from the inside out . . .”

The list goes on, but the ideas all stress the opening up of museums as social and learning spaces, community centers, places of collective engagement. He borrows the progressive language of a century ago, the ideals of John Dewey and John Cotton Dana, who sought to incorporate hands-on experience into education, and rescue cultural institutions from elitist and exclusionary leadership. It is a progressive vision updated for the Internet age and, not surprisingly, Appelbaum’s projects are saturated with interactive technology. Touch screens, mini-theaters and video monitors are set within large walls of photographs, all emphasizing the abundance of knowledge, the multiplicity of voices, the layeredness of our media-saturated society.

Read the rest here.  Love this stuff. Great ideas.

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