Distributed art exhibitions offer an enormous opportunity to build multi-sited mobile experiences. In conjunction with the Getty Museum’s upcoming multi-venue exhibition, Pacific Standard Time, the USC Mobile and Environmental Media Lab proposes a tiered exploration and adventure iPhone application that enables users to discover, collect, and participate in the rich history of art in Southern California.
Tier One: Discover
As users move through the city — in their cars, on foot, or via public transit — the application works in the background, checking their location against a database containing media artifacts, historical information and updates about upcoming events. Any items the user passes are stored in their application for later review and the user is notified with an “Inbox”-style push notification. Items can include images, video, audio, or links to relevant websites. Users may also search the database for items of particular interest.
Tier Two: Collect
Users who want to dig deeper into the collection will discover that as they physically go to specific locations related to Pacific Standard Time, they “unlock” special content that is not available to users who have not visited those locations. This content can include exclusive interviews with artists, real postcards that are automatically mailed to the user, and other unique items. By rewarding users for “checking in” at various sites, we motivate a deeper engagement with the exhibition and its related events.
Tier Three: Participate
By moving through the city and checking in at specific sites, users not only unlock fresh media content — they also open up event- and location-specific opportunities for participation. These activities, thematically linked to individual exhbits, artists, movements, and time periods, provide engaged users with the ability to take part in special events and media-making challenges. These challenges will lead to a special “climax event” at the end of the exhibition’s run.