October 13, 2020

ACMI set to become “most digitally transformed museum in the world”

By Ellen Daniel

Australia’s national museum of screen culture, the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI), is set to become the most digitally transformed museum in the world.

Located in Melbourne, the museum has unveilled details of its new multiplatform museum model ahead of its 2021 reopening.

Part of the museum’s $40m AUD redevelopment, the project will create a new way for visitors to experience digital and physical content from both within and outside of the museum.

“The new ACMI will offer an immensely rich experience that people can engage with in new ways: at home, on their devices and here at the museum itself,” said ACMI director and CEO Katrina Sedgwick.

“We are launching a new brand identity and entirely new online presence, inviting people to visit our museum no matter where they are in the world. In the same way we curate and design exhibitions and programmes for the physical museum, we have been developing them specifically for online across the breadth of screen culture – film, TV, videogames and art.

“We often consume the same stories via different platforms; we might read the comic book then watch the film adaptation and later play the videogame. Each platform brings out something new in the story. We have taken this concept of multiplatform storytelling and applied it to our museum. Thanks to our XOS, what we can now offer is a deeply integrated journey that extends, expands and enriches your visit, be that in person, or online.”

ACMI harnesses experience operating system to enhance museum experience

First conceptualised by Sedgwick in 2015, the platform is powered by a new experience operating system, with visitors able to interact with the museum before, during and after a visit.

Visitors will also be able to interact with a handheld device called the Lens, which will enable them to collect objects of interest throughout the museum and then explore them on any device afterwards.

The museum has launched a multimedia experience called The Story of the Moving Image, which enables visitors to explore the stories behind moving images, linked to a physical exhibition.

ACMI’s new technological approach (embodied in the XOS) redefines the museum experience,” said ACMI’s chief experience officer Seb Chan.

“It makes the knowledge held by our curators and communities accessible to our visitors wherever they are, allowing them to go much deeper into film, TV, videogames and contemporary art.Perhaps what I’m most excited about is this ability for visitors to greatly expand their interest in screen culture and be led by our experts into watching and playing in new ways.”

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