Launched today, Visual Arts Glasgow is a new mobile-responsive webspace that draws together the exhibitions, commentary and other stories from Glasgow’s vibrant visual arts scene, providing an image-led portal where tourists and locals can engage with visual arts news and events on the move.
Drawing Facebook, twitter, YouTube and vimeo content direct from over 40 museums, festivals, galleries and studios across the city, the new space aggregates the images and film clips that the organisations share through social media to create a constantly updated feed of visual content. From major destinations on the tourist circuit, like Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum, The Hunterian or The Burrell Collection, to lesser-known gems such as the Virginia Gallery, Mary Mary or Project Ability, the site sets the city’s visual arts destinations on an equal footing with each organisation’s profile defined exclusively by the style and extent of its social media activity. A dedicated hashtag, #VisArt, allows multi-arts venues to contribute images to the live stream, showcasing the full scope and variety of every genre of Glasgow’s thriving visual arts.
“The site makes you feel like you really are in that organisation’s space. So The Lighthouse profile page feels like The Lighthouse; the Riverside Museum feels like the Riverside; each organisation’s page is uniquely its own, whilst the homepage presents visitors with a rich fusion of the full spectrum of visual arts activity taking place across the city and extends the life of their social media content.”
Dianne Greig, Culture Sparks (WhiteNOISE project leader).
With an emphasis on connecting visual arts organisations directly with their online audiences, the site provides each organisation with a dedicated profile page that draws together its own Facebook, twitter, YouTube and vimeo content, alongside a short introduction, logo, profile picture and location map. Visitors can like, share, retweet and favourite content without leaving the webspace, or navigate directly from any post to the social media stream from which it originated to interact directly with Glasgow’s galleries, museums and studios. All interactions will be closely tracked, to create an unique and groundbreaking insight into the activity and interests of the online audience for Glasgow’s visual arts.
Designed with mobile technology in mind, the webspace is optimised for browsing on the move via smart phone or tablet (iOS and android compatible), and is equally accessible via desktop. Intuitive touch-screen navigation and a simple site structure provide a seamless user experience that brings the city’s art scene to life, setting original imagery alongside news, commentary and visitor opportunities.
Visual Arts Glasgow has been developed as part of WhiteNOISE, a Creative Scotland-funded project to define and grow audiences for the visual arts in Glasgow. Designed and developed by Culture Sparks, the WhiteNOISE project launched in 2012 with a major research phase that wove together findings from over 1,500 visitor interviews with in-depth feedback from representatives of visual arts communities; data drawn from digital and social media sources and detailed demographic information, to create an unique overview of Glasgow’s visual arts audience and the issues associated with growing it.
The Visual Arts Glasgow website responds directly to collective issues raised through the WhiteNOISE research phase, providing a portal through which visual arts organisations will connect directly with local audiences and cultural tourists.
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