the show gives pride of place to immersive technologies

@Museum Connections

The international fair dedicated to the equipment and improvement of museums, cultural and tourist sites will welcome this year 340 exhibitors and 4500 visitors, 43% of whom are foreigners. What will be the main topics and innovations during this 2023 edition? Claire de Longeaux, Exhibition Director of Museum Connections, tells us more.

What will be the key word for this 2023 edition?

Claire de Longeaux, Director of the Museum Connections show.

In the field of technology, the main word of the show this year is “diving”. Several devices will be presented in terms of sound, smell and visual immersion. In particular, Timescope will present a virtual reality tour of the Berlin TV Tower. Microsoft and its partners will come to showcase solutions that work with its HoloLens mixed reality headset. Astrea will present its immersive and interactive installations and Unendliche Studio its immersive sound technology. But immersion doesn’t always go through technology, and some exhibitors will be presenting their own range of period costumes, such as Atelier du Chat Botté. Several cultural sites have created their own immersive experiences recently. Château de Miromesnil, for example, hosted the Cluedo Party. Culture Espaces, the company behind the Atelier des Lumières, continues to offer its comprehensive tours around the world. The timeless experience of Notre Dame created by Emissive and presented at La Défense, will make its arrival in the courtyard of the cathedral. All these experiences allow you to imagine or show things that you can’t or can’t see anymore. In this area, Graphic Art & Heritage will exhibit for the first time and present its 3D modeling technology. The company has notably rebuilt the Notre-Dame d’Ourscamp abbey, visible from tablets in augmented reality.

What’s new this year?

Two foreign pavilions will be present this year. We welcome an Italian pavilion for the first time and a Catalan pavilion for the second time. Therefore, the international opening continues to develop. On the side of the store, a “Rising Creator” area is appearing, in which we highlight young creators in the field of crafts, art or handmade works.
We also offer two tours of the capital to visit places of immersion and innovation. In particular, we have planned a visit to the Paris Aquarium, which has launched an NFT sale for the retail part in partnership with the Metaseum. The shop and brokerage worlds usually talk to each other quite a bit, so it’s quite new.
Another innovation is the appearance of specialized players in the back office. Smeetz, for example, offers a comprehensive solution, integrating the entire visit path. This makes it possible to have a global vision thanks to the collected data and to detect trends. Until now, cultural facilities used several solutions at the same time. Now they can have a 360 vision.
I would also like to highlight a new exhibitor, Wikimedia, the media library created by the Wikipedia team, which will come to present its reflection on open data at the crossroads of the general public and the cultural place.

What are the trends in the sector that will be transcribed through the various conferences and interventions?

Two main themes stand out this year. First of all, the ecological transition which is an important topic in cultural countries today. They ask questions about the use of digital technology and seek to calculate their carbon footprint. Should we go back to a basic experience to pollute less? Do we still need to move visitors? Should trips be optimized to do as many things as possible? The director of the Lomé museum in Togo will speak in particular about the role of culture in preserving biodiversity.
The next topic is the changing role of the cultural venue. Last August, ICOM published a new definition of a museum. Sustainability also comes into this new definition. What role can the museum play in the reception of refugees, especially Ukrainians? How did it become a sounding board and how can it convey messages, especially to teenage audiences? We will also talk about the role of the museum in well-being. All these issues will have to do with cultural objects in the medium and long term.

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