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Mobilising connections with art: Artcasting and the digital articulation of visitor engagement with cultural heritage

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)395-414
Number of pages20
JournalInternational Journal of Heritage Studies
Volume25
Issue number4
Early online date25 Jul 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2019

Abstract

This article offers insights into how digital methods in cultural heritage settings
can help evoke and understand the richness of visitor engagement and
interpretation, especially in relation to expressions of ownership. Drawing on the
Artcasting research project, which examined how galleries can inventively
evaluate visitors’ engagement with art, we propose that, in addition to looking for commonalities and stability in visitors’ articulation of engagement, it is beneficial to look for ways to make sense of difference. The project drew on theories of mobility to explore visitor engagement with cultural heritage, creating an artcasting platform that invited visitors to ‘cast’ artworks to another place or time. We analyse artcasting data through two ‘movements’. The first uses thematic analysis of artcasts to show how visitors to two ARTIST ROOMS
exhibitions expressed ownership in relation to their engagement with artworks.
The second demonstrates how individual responses can be put into relationship
and understood as an articulation of engagement that moves beyond the
interpretive authority of the gallery or any one visitor. The article contributes new perspectives to understandings of articulation and engagement and their
relationship to the production of heritage, and reflects on implications for moving digital practice towards more complexity and diversity.

    Research areas

  • cultural heritage engagement, mobilities theory, interpretation, mobile devices, digital engagement, visitor experience

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