The Digital Media Department leads the creation, production, presentation, and dissemination of multimedia content to support the viewing and understanding of the Met's collections and exhibitions, both within the galleries and online.
Posted: Thursday, October 16, 2014
In 1941 the Museum decided to consolidate staff charged with maintaining contact with schools, colleges, institutions of the city, and the Department of Education into one cohesive group, entitled the Department of Education and Museum Extension. This division would encompass general guide services, adult education and lecture programs, curatorial study rooms, circulating exhibitions and lending collections, visual materials (lantern slides, photographs), and the Junior Museum.
Posted: Monday, October 13, 2014
This past May, I made a familiar pilgrimage to
The Cloisters, the northern Manhattan branch of The Metropolitan Museum of Art in Fort Tryon Park. The Cloisters are a unique treasure of the museum world, featuring beautiful gardens, a stunning collection of medieval art, and majestic spaces. The purpose of my journey was to spend the day with Museum staff testing Google Glass. The camera within Google Glass would be the focus of our exploration on this memorable day, helping my colleagues and I to see the space in new ways.
Posted: Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Last winter I attended a presentation at Harvestworks Digital Media Arts Center, where I had previously worked as an intern. One of the speakers was
Don Undeen, senior manager of Media Lab at the Met, who presented many interesting projects his Media Lab colleagues were working on that used a number of emerging technologies. Among these technologies were 3D scanning and 3D printing, which I had a particular interest in thanks to my background in video, 3D animation, photography, and sculpture.
Posted: Thursday, September 18, 2014
Met App now launched, it's been fantastic tracking the public response to this new digital product. I was delighted that the app was featured as one of the Best New Apps in the AppStore, and that praised the app for its "lovely, clean design that begs to be explored." And, in case you missed it, I also enjoyed the The New York Times playful overview of our press launch in ArtNews.
My favorite article, though, has been Seth Porge's piece for
Forbes: " The Met's New App Is Modest, But Could Foreshadow Big Things." Porge reviews the app through the lens of the Lean Startup playbook: "Design a product, work out the kinks, see how people use it, and build and iterate off that;" and argues that "the current version [of the app] can be viewed as the Met's minimal viable product (MVP)."
That's exactly how we see it, too.
Posted: Monday, September 15, 2014
This Wednesday, September 17, join us on Twitter for
Ask a Curator Day. Three curators will answer your questions about their jobs, collections, exhibitions, and more during live Twitter Q&As. You can tweet your questions to @metmuseum using the #AskaCurator hashtag both in advance and during the following sessions.
Posted: Friday, September 5, 2014
Games—and video games in particular—are often consigned to the unfortunate category of "frivolous," thought to sap away valuable time that could be spent pursuing more sophisticated, "useful" activities. I'm glad that the Metropolitan Museum feels otherwise: my focus this summer, as the Solow Art and Architecture Intern in Digital Learning, has been to create game and play experiences to educate and engage kids ages seven through twelve with the Museum and its
Posted: Tuesday, September 2, 2014
I'm pleased to announce the launch of the
Met app created by the Museum's Digital Media Department. This free digital resource is the easiest way for the Met community, both local and global, to stay current with what's happening at the Museum every day—wherever you are.
Posted: Tuesday, August 26, 2014
The Department of Islamic Art's fifteen
galleries for the Art of the Arab Lands, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia, and Later South Asia are some of the most visually striking in the entire Museum. Located on the second floor of the North Wing, visitors are greeted by elaborate patterns carved and painted on many objects—from ceramic bowls to tapestries and arches. Tiles tessellate in repeating patterns across the walls, and in one room the ceiling is covered with intricately carved geometric patterns. With a collection of over twelve thousand objects, these galleries illustrate the fascinating diversity of the culture of Islam.
Posted: Thursday, August 21, 2014
The Museum's Main Building at Fifth Avenue and 82nd Street has practically been under construction since it was first completed in 1880. Growing and changing to accommodate the ever-expanding collection and visitor base, the building has been shaped by each director's initiatives, all with an eye toward accommodating future needs and demands. Wings have been added, galleries have been reconfigured, spaces have been renovated and changed time and time again, and some are wholly unrecognizable from their earliest days. In order to accommodate the collection, the Museum strives to create the perfect atmosphere for its artworks; curators strive to convey time and place, history and subtext—maintaining a great sensitivity to the past, but remaining firmly steeped in the present.
Posted: Monday, August 18, 2014
Digital Underground continues its
Met + Parsons Museum Accessibility Workshop series by taking a look at a project that tackled the thorny problem of accessible wayfinding in a large, overwhelming museum such as the Met. Not only did the participants in this group develop a paper prototype outlining a user interface for wayfinding, they also did the practical work of walking through the Museum's first floor and identifying multiple points of accessibility metadata (stairs, lighting, acoustics, flooring, etc.) for every room. This effort led directly to a follow-up project during the following semester by Media Lab Intern Yuliya Parchina-Kottas, which you can read more about in her . We caught up with this workshop team to discuss the inspiration for their project, and how the workshop helped them to better understand the museum experience. Digital Underground post
Posted: Thursday, August 7, 2014
82nd & Fifth web feature redefined the online museum experience: in two-minute episodes, one hundred Met curators talked about the work of art that changed the way they see the world—one curator, one work, two minutes at a time. That content is now available on an iPad app in twelve languages. You can download, favorite, and share episodes, and create your own collections.
Posted: Wednesday, August 6, 2014
During the Fall 2013 semester, the Met and Parsons The New School for Design forged a new partnership,
Met + Parsons Museum Accessibility Collaboration Workshop, to explore possibilities for using technology to improve the museum experience for visitors with disabilities. Our first featured project from that workshop, Eye on Art, focused on developing an eye-tracking system that would enhance the experiences of nonverbal and mobility-challenged art lovers. We recently sat down with the student participants to discuss their inspiration for this project, and the challenges they encountered in the process.
Posted: Tuesday, July 29, 2014
As part of my work as a Media Lab intern, I created an educational booklet about fundamental 3D-printing processes,
, which will help the Met's staff and visitors to better understand how to create and print 3D models with 123D Catch and other open-source software. The booklet was designed to build on the Media Lab's practice of helping audiences use 3D models of objects in the Met's collection for their own creative purposes. There are three main chapters in my booklet—Scanning, Modeling, and Printing—as well as some examples of how to create a new art project inspired by reproduction art, an idea I got from John Berger's 3D Printing Booklet for Beginners Ways of Seeing.
Posted: Monday, July 21, 2014
What expectations do people with disabilities have when they visit museums? How are museums adapting new technologies to better serve our visitors, whatever their abilities and interests? How can the Met take a leadership role in introducing standards for inclusivity to the next generation of museum technologists? These are some of the questions we asked ourselves when embarking on the Met + Parsons Museum Accessibility Collaboration Workshop.
Posted: Tuesday, July 8, 2014
Yuliya Parshina-Kottas is a recent graduate of the
ITP program at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. After a decade of working as an animator and designer for children's television, advertising, and multimedia museum exhibits, she is venturing bravely into the world of user experience, interaction design, and creative coding. I am thrilled to have Yuliya introduce her recent Media Lab project, Accessible Wayfinding, here on Digital Underground.
Posted: Tuesday, July 1, 2014
The online feature
One Met. Many Worlds. launched on June 9, and recently became available as an e-book on The Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide Amazon, Google Play, and iTunes; the print version will soon be released in Arabic, German, Korean, and Russian. These two projects present different perspectives on the highlights of the Museum's collection: One Met. Many Worlds. is driven by universal concepts that encourage the viewer to explore artworks in a new ways, while the Guide provides an essential art history background in a more traditional format. I recently spoke with Amy Liebster, associate coordinator for online publications, about both the web feature and the various versions of the print guide.
Posted: Thursday, June 26, 2014
In my last
, I discussed artist Cory Arcangel's Digital Underground post (2002), a digital artwork that stripped the original Super Mario Clouds Super Mario Bros. video game of everything but the background and clouds. If your interest in digital-art copyism was piqued by that, then you should also know that there are many routes one can take to achieve this end result. Cory has already shared his process, and in this post I will outline my experience translating his image-based instructions. If all goes well, you will end up with your very own bespoke copy of Super Mario Clouds.
Posted: Friday, June 13, 2014
The Museum's first
Bulletin, published in November 1905, mentions a restaurant "located in the basement of the North side of the Main building. Meals are served à la carte, from 10 a.m.–6 p.m., and table d'hote from 12 a.m.–6.pm." ( The Metropolitan Museum of Art , Vol. 1, No. 1, Nov. 1905). The Museum Restaurant was located near the western end of what was then known as the Hall of Casts, accessible via a staircase leading to the basement (approximately where the current Public Cafeteria is now). By 1912 an entire renovation was planned for the restaurant, as "[it] has never been an attractive place to visitors, partly because of its location . . . but equally because of its dark, cheerless aspect, [and was] so far removed from the toilet rooms . . . [that it was] a serious drawback." ( Bulletin The Metropolitan Museum of Art , Vol. 7, No. 10, Oct. 1912). Accordingly, these planned renovations highlighted "a rest-room for women, with a toilet-room attached, [including] wash-basins with hot and cold water, while a smoking room will be provided for men, also with lavatories" (ibid.). Bulletin
Posted: Thursday, June 12, 2014
Today marks the opening day of the World Cup, the monthlong tournament in which teams from thirty-two nations will compete for the title of best soccer team in the world. Since the Metropolitan's
collection includes works of art from all thirty-two nations participating in the games, we thought this would be a perfect occasion to celebrate the global nature of our holdings.
Posted: Wednesday, June 11, 2014
The art at the Met reaches across the globe, so we wanted to start providing our collection information in some of the many languages represented by these cultures. Our new web feature
One Met. Many Worlds. brings you more than five hundred collection highlights in eleven languages: English, Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish.
Posted: Friday, June 6, 2014
One of the many lessons I've learned in my first 10 months on the job at the Met is how much attention is paid to everything we do here. Having worked at Columbia Journalism School for two decades, I am familiar with the amount of interest journalists take in the activities of a major institution (especially when most alumni are journalists themselves).
Because of the Met's reputation, scale, and history, our activities get a lot of scrutiny. I
wrote recently about the social media traction that we got thanks to the annual #MetGala, and the Webby Award for our Instagram account.
But nothing quite prepared me for the amount of press, blogger, and social media attention we've gotten for our recently updated image use policy.
Posted: Thursday, June 5, 2014
Ana Marva Fernández is a Brooklyn-based Mexican-American artist whose installations include found objects, photographs, and rapid-prototype works which explore the implications of art in society as we move towards the future. Her work tends to reference the tensions found in Mexico's political landscape, intertwined with a playful use of mystical characters. A guest artist at the Met's
3D Hackathon in 2012, Ana has produced a variety of works using the Met's collection as a starting point for her vision.
Posted: Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Last week I had the opportunity to attend
Internet Week New York, an annual gathering of speakers and events related to technology, business, and culture. Unlike other conferences I've attended, which are more focused on the museum sector, Internet Week provides a glimpse into the world of for-profit digital media projects and advertising issues, which I found incredibly relevant to the work being done in the nonprofit world as well.
Posted: Thursday, May 22, 2014
I began my internship in the Digital Media Department's Media Lab in the summer of 2013, after my first year as a master's candidate in the Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. With a background in music and multimedia performance, my first year at ITP was frankly mind-blowing: I learned a whole host of new technologies that opened up entirely new ways of approaching narrative, visual imagery, and audience participation, and my work in the Media Lab was propelled by this new outlook.
Posted: Friday, May 9, 2014
It's been a memorable couple of Mondays for the Met's social media efforts.
Posted: Thursday, April 10, 2014
Posted: Thursday, April 10, 2014
The cover of the Museum's
April 1913 Bulletin was devoted exclusively to J. Pierpont Morgan's contributions to the Museum during his lifetime. It read: "J. Pierpont Morgan / Great Citizen of Great Heart, Great Mind, Great Will / Knowing that art is necessary to upholding the ideals of a nation he gave to this Museum generously of his possessions and more generously of himself."
Posted: Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Known as the "City of Light" and the "City of Love," Paris is the world-renowned capital of romance. Its wide boulevards and enchanting architecture have captured the hearts and imaginations of artists, writers, and architects for centuries. But you don't have to get on a plane to enjoy the delightful sights of this historic city; spend April in Paris right here at the Met with French works of art from the collection and special Paris-related exhibitions.
Posted: Monday, March 10, 2014
I am delighted to announce the launch of the Met's latest web series,
MetCollects. This multimedia feature gives you an intimate look at some of the hundreds of works of art that the Met acquires each year. These exciting new additions are introduced by the curators who proposed them for the Met's collection.
Posted: Thursday, February 27, 2014
In the first half of the twentieth century, the American violinist and educator David Mannes (1866–1959) conducted the Symphony Society of New York, which frequently performed at events and openings hosted by The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Posted: Monday, February 24, 2014
Posted: Thursday, February 20, 2014
Ryan Kittleson is a tech-friendly artist living in Brooklyn, New York, whose 3D models have been used in animations at Disney World and Sea World, as well as the renowned display windows at Sak's Fifth Avenue. Originally a self-taught digital-graphics artist, Ryan has served on the faculty of Full Sail University teaching character modeling, and continues to provide educational resources focused on the wonders of digital sculpture through Lynda.com.
Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Google Glass Explorer Gretchen Andrus Andrew—a London-based artist and former Google employee—first contacted me via Twitter last October. She was aware of the Met's experimentation with Google Glass after reading my first post for Digital Underground, and was interested in meeting here at the Museum while she was visiting New York.
Posted: Friday, January 31, 2014
Do you like the digital media in the exhibition
? Ranging from an eye-catching, wide-screen projection of a majestic burial site to a 3D animation of a famous monument, the technology in the exhibition is there to enhance a visitor's experience of the art on display. Silla: Korea's Golden Kingdom
Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2014
The Met launched its first audio guide in the 1960s, and although technology has come a long way since then, the objective remains the same: to enhance the visitor's experience of an artwork or an exhibition with engaging, interpretive audio content.
For a behind-the-scenes look at the making of
The American West in Bronze Audio Guide, I met with Staci Hou, Assistant Content Producer in the Met's Digital Media Department. As Staci explained, "This exhibition is particularly well suited for an audio guide. It features objects in the round with fascinating stories. We wanted to focus on these stories, as well as the backgrounds of many of the artists in the show."
Posted: Wednesday, January 8, 2014
It should come as no surprise at this point that I'm interested in digital modeling and 3D printing; I like the idea that objects in the Met's collection can be used as inspiration and raw material for new works. For that reason, when I recognized a model of a Met object at
3D Notion, a recent exhibition of 3D-printed works at the Bruce High Quality Foundation University, I was immediately intrigued.
Posted: Monday, January 6, 2014
The 2013 production
was screened in Spain on November 27 as part of FICAB XIII, the 13th International Film Festival of the Bidasoa. The documentary explains how the twelfth-century Romanesque apse was dismantled in 1957 from the church of San Martín in Fuentidueña, north of Madrid, transported to New York, and installed at The Cloisters between 1958 and 1961. Christopher Noey directed and produced this 28-minute documentary and I was its editor; many people within Digital Media and across the Museum contributed to the project. The Fuentidueña Apse: A Journey from Castile to New York
Posted: Friday, December 20, 2013
Posted: Tuesday, December 17, 2013
In 1937, for the very first time at the Museum, the Christmas spirit "received unusually graphic representation," according to The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Bulletin (December 1937). A small exhibition from December 19, 1937, through January 2, 1938, featured The Christmas Story in Art: The Nativity, the Adoration of the Shepherds, the Adoration of the Magi, and the Flight into Egypt as illustrated in forty paintings, prints, drawings, sculptures, and decorative arts chosen from the Museum's collection.
Posted: Tuesday, November 26, 2013
At the Met, we've been experimenting with ways that museum visitors can use
3D scanning, hacking, and printing to enhance their experience of works of art. In light of our recent explorations, we caught up with Jonathan Monaghan, a creative technologist who participated in our 3D Hackathon back in 2012, to ask him some questions about one of the works he created that weekend and about his work with 3D printing and CGI animation.
Posted: Thursday, November 14, 2013
Each week this year, our web series
82nd & Fifth has brought you a little deeper into the world of the Met. In the close to ninety episodes we've posted so far, you've gotten to hear Museum curators talk about works of art that changed the way they see the world. We've produced a short video to give you a behind-the-scenes look at how our team of editors, producers, and photographers creates each two-minute episode.
Posted: Tuesday, November 12, 2013
last post, I introduced some of the work we're doing at the Museum with 3D scanning, modeling, and printing. I hope I piqued your interest in photographing objects in the galleries and turning those images into digital 3D models for use in your own artistic creations. Today I'm going to talk about the photography process: how to get the best images for use with the 3D-modeling program 123D Catch, and how to take pictures of an object without putting it at risk of unintended contact.
Posted: Monday, November 4, 2013
Last month we launched two new sections of metmuseum.org:
Met Blogs, which collects and presents posts from blogs across the site, and Community, which highlights our activity on a wide array of social media channels. These new sections are designed to invite visitors to find new ways to connect with the Museum.
Posted: Monday, October 28, 2013
You've probably heard a lot about Google Glass, the mobile wearable technology created by Google that enables users to capture images and video, to receive email, SMS messages, and social media updates, and to find directions or browse the Internet. Although it's arguably the most famous, it's only one of many new mobile devices that has emerged in a field of wearable cameras, smart watches, and wristbands. We can all imagine how to use these devices in our daily lives, but what about inside a museum?
Posted: Wednesday, October 16, 2013
The idea for our 3D sculpture came together after taking pictures of a Chinese
chimera and a bodhisattva from the Asian Art galleries, along with , currently on view in the Met's Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas galleries. From there, we took each of the photos and stitched them together using 3D printing software. Ritual Seat for a Noble (Osa' osa)
Posted: Tuesday, October 15, 2013
3D Printing. You've heard the term everywhere lately, from Popular Science magazine to tech blogs, to President Obama's State of the Union address. Advocates of this technology claim that 3D printers will revolutionize manufacturing, health care, education, design, space exploration, time travel, and countless other fields. While they may not help us travel back in time, 3D printers sure are neat, and new applications of these tools are being developed every day.
Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013
The inspiration for our 3D scanning and printing workshop project came from our mutual interest in both Asian and Greek mythology. Although we came across many potential subjects while getting to know the Museum's collection, we quickly decided to base our plastic sculpture on Greek mythological figures and Buddhist deities—combining animal and human forms to create a supernatural god.
Posted: Friday, October 4, 2013
In addition to images of works of art, the Met's digital archive also documents the Museum's buildings, inside and outside, as they've expanded and changed over time to accommodate works of art and visitors. A veritable treasure trove of visual history, these images offer clues to familiar museum experiences: a child's rebellious stance; a visitor's self-consciousness at being caught on film; managing an oversized coat.
Posted: Friday, October 4, 2013
We just posted my episode, entitled
, as part of 82nd & Fifth, the award-winning web series that has introduced our audience and our curators to a whole new way of looking at works of art: one object, one curator, two minutes at a time. I chose one of my favorite masterpieces—a Bernard van Orley tapestry of Breakthrough The Last Supper from 1524—and was amazed by the stunning details that Met photographer Peter Zeray was able to capture. This is the 75th of this 100-episode project, and I hope you take some time to enjoy them all.
Posted: Monday, September 30, 2013