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Weekly Roundup: Museums in the News 4/14/2017

Category: Alliance Blog

This week’s Roundup shares stories about innovation, failure, and sharing (oh and 3D printing!)

1. “Failure is necessary for innovation,” explains Samuel West, founder of Sweden’s new Museum of Failure. The museum will display innovation flops hoping to make audiences laugh and learn.  West wants to share the message that “It’s OK to fail small scale, when nobody dies and it doesn’t cost a billion dollars. If you can accept those small failures, then you can hopefully avoid the huge catastrophic ones.”

So bad they’re good: Museum showcases failures

They are all considered innovation flops — and they will all go on display at Sweden’s new Museum of Failure. Innovation researcher — and failure obsessive — Samuel West is the brains behind the project, which opens in June.

2. Having learned our lessons about innovation from the Museum of Failure, are you ready to innovate in the museum sector? NEW INC, the New Museum’s cultural incubator, and the Knight Foundation have paired up to offer opportunities for individuals focused on using technology to increase audience engagement at museums.  Application deadlines are April 30th. I can’t wait to see what emerges from this program!

NEW INC, the New Museum’s cultural incubator expands scope, inviting applicants focused on using technology to increase audience engagement at museums

April 13, 2017 Knight Foundation invests $250,000 to support museum innovation NEW YORK-April 13, 2017-Now in its third year, NEW INC, the New Museum’s professional development program for cultural practitioners and creative entrepreneurs, will expand its scope to seek out new members who are investigating technology’s impact on the future of art museums. The John S.

3. I’ve been enjoying Shelley Bernstein’s articles about visitor experience, digital content, and strategy at the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia. Not only do I find the themes interesting, but also that Bernstein is intentional about sharing the Barnes process in order to create dialogue that advances the museum sector.

Rethinking the museum collection online. – Barnes Foundation – Medium

In the coming months, we’ll be talking quite a bit about two projects currently in production - our website redesign and, running alongside it, a new presentation of the Barnes Foundation collection online.

4. Yale University’s Peabody Museum of Natural History bird hall houses more than 700 bird specimens representing about 330 species, but the collection had noticeable gaps in the collection due to rare, endangered, or even extinct species. To fill these gaps, the museum is using 3D scanning and printing and other processes such as dipping the 3D printed contour models into hot wax to carve details.

Digital birds perch at Yale’s Peabody Museum

Four sandpipers congregate on a workbench in the basement of Yale’s Peabody Museum of Natural History. At first glance, the shorebirds look genuine – not unlike the hundreds of taxidermy specimens that populate in the Peabody’s Birds of Connecticut exhibit hall – but these sandpipers never hatched from eggs.

5. It’s easy to get swept up in some sense of irony that the Kentucky Coal Mining Museum’s has adopted solar power to save money. I think it’s a brave move for the museum to assert through this action that it can honor its mission of memorializing Kentucky’s history in coal mining while not being beholden to using the fossil fuel.

Kentucky coal museum switching to solar power

The Kentucky Coal Mining Museum in Benham, owned by Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College, is switching to solar power to save money. The museum, which memorializes Kentucky’s history in coal mining, is modernizing with a new form of cheaper energy.

Are you joining us in St. Louis for the 2017 Annual Meeting & MuseumExpo? You can learn about some of the wonderful excursions set up by the meeting’s amazing Local Host Committee.

“Go Explore” Excursions Highlight St. Louis Museums, Neighborhoods and Food!

From the nationally-renowned St. Louis Zoo, Laumeier Sculpture Park and St. Louis Art Museum to hidden gems like the World Chess Hall of Fame, Museum of Contemporary Religious Art and Field House Museum, “Go Explore St. Louis,” taking place on Sunday, May 7 and Monday, May 8, will give Annual Meeting attendees a chance to check out St.

Happy weekend!

Do you have a great museum story to share? Let us know in the comments!

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