Play, create, connect, and dive deeper into the CMA’s collection in ArtLens Studio.
ArtLens Studio is for the young and young at heart fostering a lifetime connection to the museum through joyful, creative exploration of the collection. The activities are designed to begin a relationship to the collection through artwork-centered play.
ArtLens Studio provides a unique introduction to the museum’s collection while building appreciation and the foundations of visual literacy for the next generation of art connoisseurs. ArtLens Studio uses cutting-edge technology to give visitors of all ages the chance to use movement and play to connect to the collection. Visitors are exposed to a range of artwork through creative and active prompts. The space, filled with whimsy and fun, will enhance the visitors’ experience of the entire museum. Interactives are designed for ages 3 to 103; younger children are welcome to participate with a parent or enjoy the many children’s books available in the space.
ArtLens Studio features include:
Create Studio is a place for visitors to unleash their inner artist. The interactives in the Create Studio build on the museum’s 100 years of experience in studio-based programming, including the well-loved offerings of Museum Art Classes and Second Sundays. Visitors consistently comment on the ways that their own creativity helps them build a deeper understanding of the collection.
Create Studio offers four different ways to make digital artwork in a space resembling an artist’s studio. The installations use a combination of time-of-flight depth cameras, custom C++ software and real-time graphics to create interactive experiences that allow visitors to play with traditional artistic techniques, in an expressive, gesture-based way. Visitors may share creations on the museum’s Tumblr site or post them on social media using #ArtLens.
- Portrait Maker: This interactive allows visitors to craft their likeness in the style of the portraits that line the walls of the museum. Choose from oil, charcoal or watercolor to create a self-portrait that is realistic or abstract.
- Pottery Wheel: A spinning block of clay is molded into shape as visitors mimic a potter’s movements at a wheel. Using depth-tracking cameras, this interactive magically recreates the experience of a potter at the wheel. The intensity of the participants’ gestures changes the width of their digital vessels. When finished shaping the clay, visitors can add colorful decorative designs and patterns.
- Collage Maker: With a snip and a clip, visitors are able to create digital collages using a wide variety of images from the museum collection. Enlarge, rotate and duplicate details from a favorite modern painting with scenery from masterworks by medieval artists to create something new and unique.
- Paint Play: Using motion-tracking technology, a “painting” is created through the visitor’s arm and hand movements. Just like using an actual brush and paint, broad gestures result in a wider paint splatter while smaller gestures create areas of more concentrated color.
You can find your Create Studio masterpieces on our tumblr!
Reveal and Zoom
Reveal and Zoom alternate on a 4K interactive video wall that uses the body as a tool to explore masterworks from the museum’s collection using innovative motion-tracking technology. Reveal and Zoom engage visitors in two different methods of investigating the collection. In Reveal, a larger-than-life-size image is at first blurry, but visitors’ movements, individually or in groups, bring the artwork into sharp focus. Sweeping gestures bring about subtle changes to the image, while smaller, focused movement extracts finer details. The process continues until the object is entirely “revealed.” Reveal encourages playful exploration and collaboration. With Zoom, the visitor’s body acts as a magnifying glass to highlight details of enlarged artworks from the CMA’s collection. Using body movement, participants can examine every detail of a work of art, encouraging visitor-led investigation and discovery.
Line and Shape
Visitors draw lines and shapes on a large touch screen, and these simple forms are rapidly matched to one of over 7,000 works in the museum’s collection. Line and Shape highlights discovery, focusing on details of different works in the CMA’s extensive holdings.
Matching emphasizes the connection between visual and verbal literacy. Working against a ticking clock, visitors are asked to find artworks containing an everyday item, like a chair, as quickly as possible. In order to accommodate varied skill levels and ages, there are multiple levels of difficulty for this activity.
Modeled after the time-honored game, this interactive invites visitors to “flip over” different cards, two at a time, in order to make a match, challenging visitors to hone their visual memory skills. When two details from the same work of art are successfully matched, the entire image is revealed. Presented as a companion for the Matching Game, the Memory Game is a quick, easy and enjoyable way to introduce visitors to some of the immense variety of artwork in the museum.
The CMA established a standardized, well-documented development environment, including: a master application programming interface (API) used for integrating all artwork, artist/creator, and location information, a common framework for defining and testing the content structure and staff workbenches needed to manage both existing and new interactives, a consolidated content delivery network platform for digital assets for all interactives (in ArtLens App, exhibitions, collections online, or any future interactive) for ease of management and troubleshooting, and a single method for connecting interactives to user devices for favorites and saving of user-generated content. The CMA’s custom-built catalog management system pulls live content, writes it once, and then updates it everywhere, making any artwork information or interpretive content updated by the curatorial, registrar, or interpretation departments immediately accessible in all digital interactives.