webpick of the week
Representing the first steps toward a fully rebranded web presence, this site supports the museum’s mission of bringing art and people together for enjoyment, discovery and learning by projecting its collections out into the world.
The interactive experience presents the works of art in a simple and intuitive way and enables users to search thousands of pieces, view them in a non-intrusive interface, share them with their social media networks and tag objects to create personal online art “collections.”
• The project began in Fall 2010 but because the Walters had an approaching grant deadline, Fastspot switched gears to complete an object display tool for their Treasures of Heaven exhibition. Work was resumed on this site in Spring 2011 and it launched in September.
• The online collection represents about one-third of the total museum holdings; part of the objective of the redesign was to accommodate a larger and growing amount of content.
• Browsing pages each have a layout designed for the amount of content to navigate; up to 100 works of art per page can be viewed in layouts that don’t complicate the presentation with finer details.
• Community Collections allows visitors to login using a Facebook username/password.
• The site integrates with The Museum System (TMS), a database software created by Gallery Systems and used by museums for cataloging. TMS’s front-end product, eMuseum, wasn’t accomplishing what the Walters needed; the new interface for exploring the artwork integrates seamlessly with the TMS database.
• Visitors can subscribe to an Artwork of the Day RSS feed.
• Since launch there have been more than 20,000 absolute unique visitors with an average time of approximately 3 minutes spent on the site; the Walters estimates that there’s been an increase of about 200 (non-unique) visits per day.