The Art Gallery of NSW wanted an audio delivery platform that showcased the possibilities for an audio experience in an art museum. The platform needed to be consistent and scalable, starting small with the ability to be built out in the future for expansion into other galleries to support the organisation’s long-term goals for location-based audio offerings. To inaugurate the platform, we needed to create an audio experience that would push the limits of traditional guides and fully utilise the technical capacity of our delivery platform.
In close consultation with the gallery and the exhibition curators, we zeroed in on storytelling and soundscapes as the focus for developing the guide’s audio content. We incorporated environmental sound design to immerse visitors even more deeply in the rich storytelling, which included the use of acclaimed actor Hugo Weaving to voice the role of artist John Russell. Alongside developing the audio content, we developed the technical framework that would deliver the guide to visitors via a specially built app on our proprietary platform.
The music for this exhibition was layered so beautifully. We had quite a few visitors who told us they walked around the exhibition twice — the first time listening to the narrative and then again just listening to the music.
– Brooke Carson-Ewart,
Head of Digital Engagement, Art Gallery of NSW
Music has the power to shift the way people interpret art. For the audio tour to have a point of difference, we developed a detailed audio content plan that assumed characteristics of the impressionist movement that spawned Russell’s works.
Working closely with the Gallery's digital engagement and curatorial teams,
we developed the John Russell Audio Experience. This location-aware
cinematic audio tour paired narrative and storytelling with an original musical
score, transporting visitors to the world within the paintings. Our audio
delivery platform provided the technical framework required to achieve a
multi-layered and spatially immersive gallery audio experience.
Impact in numbers
91 per cent Visitors who expressed positive feedback after post-launch update to the audio experience. Satisfaction increased from 61%.
55 minutes Average time visitors spent listening to the audio experience while wandering the exhibition.
88 per cent Of visitors listened to all 12 of the audio tracks. Visitor feedback showed the narration wasn’t too long or too short, it was just right.