Top tips on how to produce great Museum Exhibition Design whatever the budget

Part 1

Let me start by saying I was keen not to make this a top 10 list for great museum exhibition design as so many others do these days.

It takes far more than 10 tips to generate something special which captures the best qualities of local and major museums. You cannot just produce great museum exhibition design by simply following a top tips list like making your favourite fruit pie. Yes it takes high quality ingredients but without getting those in the right order and amounts to harmonise it won’t even make a medico, let alone the best fruit pie!

However get some help from a professional museum designer and their expert knowledge and experience will prove invaluable on creating your Michelin star quality fruit pie.

So where to start?

There’s a good chance that if you are reading this article you have spent a lot of time looking round museums & art galleries either as part of your career or as a tourist. So possibly you already have a pretty good idea of what you liked and hated about these museum? You may not even remember them at all. You tend to find unless it was as an exercise for work you would probably struggle to give your top three museums either from home or internationally. If you can recall your top three museum or galleries you will definitely know why.

For those others, don’t feel bad you make up the majority of visitors who visit museum as a must do or one of the things to do on another list of what to see in your city guide. How many of these visitors after walking round with the overload backpacks actually learn something before having to succumb to their next latte. Almost the fix of refreshment becomes the highlight of the visit!

To be honest when you walk around lots of museums or galleries it’s not really surprising. Most of this museums and I don’t mean small poorly funded local museum but major museum and galleries are boring. They do not offer information to the visitor in a way that invites the visitor to learn more. I liken it to newspapers of old with tiny black print you really had to want to look to find the information, against today’s colour magazines and publications which give easy headlines to arouse your interest and bring you into the story.

Test this for yourself, try watching people funneling by a great master painting or sculpture, there will be those who just want to rattle of a couple of snap shots and move on, some giving it the barest of glimpse whilst they consult their tour guide map for the shortest route to the Café or toilets. There’s the couple who are interested but find no supporting information, story-lines or they are boring and lack any eye candy. Of course we must not forget those scholars among us who require a different kind of access.

Therefore the majority of visitors have not been inspired or stimulated so just keep on walking by giving the barest of glimpses as if walking around their local supermarket doing the weekly shop. In fact the supermarkets know how to stimulate their visitors by now you would have thought museums would have too!

So I started off with a top list of what to include in your next museum exhibition design project, then I swerved way off course and sighted one of the biggest mistakes made in so many museums and galleries since their creation.

Next time – I really will list my top tips list for how to create great museum exhibition design whatever the budget. Keep your eyes peeled for part 2.