“You have a notification.” With no regard for my surroundings, my eyes are drawn to the screen. Whether I am in the middle of a conversation or am finishing a math problem, my attention suddenly dissipates. My finger moves to the screen on its own accord. Social media has a huge impact on museums, which depend on the undivided attention of spectators. After all, how can someone really appreciate art if they are scrolling through Instagram and taking Snapchats?
To bridge the growing gap between the old and the new, popular museums are becoming more mobile friendly. For so long, art galleries prided themselves on prohibiting cellphone use inside exhibits, but this often does more harm than good. Stringent cell phone policies drive crowds away from museums and toward Twitter feeds. So, museums are taking action.
The Museum of Modern Art now uses Instagram as a marketing tool, attracting everyone from photography amateurs to experts by offering and encouraging “Instagram-worthy” snaps with great selfie lighting and backgrounds.
Museums like the Guggenheim and the Metropolitan Museum of Art offer Bluetooth tracking via app to provide features and facts that supplement each art piece being viewed.
In hopes of attracting larger crowds, museums are trying everything to make art an interactive experience as they adapt to the latest technological advancements.
Recognizing the important place of social media in the artistic community, Crystal Tursich, the photography teacher, says “Lots of photographers are getting into Instagram and Twitter, and they can publish photos before other outlets.”
Tursich adds that students can find inspiration by following contemporary artists on [social media] platforms, and believes that creating a hashtag to share students’ pieces is a “wonderful idea [so that] students can engage with each other’s artwork.”
From famed art institutions to our very own CA community, social media is becoming inextricably intertwined with the arts.