We have a long term passion for building tools that help museums tell their unique and compelling stories. CultureObject – an open source tool we’ve built to get museum object records online – has been around for a while, and our next phase aimed to expand this into what we’ve given the lazy working title “CultureStory”. The basic idea is that museum objects are only so interesting online – what really makes them amazing is the knitting together of narratives around them. We envisaged a tool which would enable museums to ingest their object metadata, then drop these records into a narrative structure.

When we got chatting to Bristol Museums about their aspirations to get exhibition content online, we realised that our two aims were broadly aligned and this project was born.

The end result is a flexible WordPress theme which allows the content team at the museum to create visually rich online exhibitions. They can import sub-sets of object data for each one, and then use the interface to add timelines, maps, object galleries and so on.

We’re at the beginning of the process working with the museum and hope to roll out further improvements and modules over time, making the narrative creation process even more visual. Ultimately, we’d like this to become a stand-alone product by turning it into a plugin, much like CultureObject.

At a glance...

Project Type

Description

Bristol Museums wanted a way of bringing their objects and stories about their objects together into a visually stunning and easy to edit site.

Client

Bristol Museums

Link

See the site
We are generating a huge amount of rich multimedia and narrative which we wanted to publish online to complement our exhibitions programme. User research has shown that our audiences engage better with longer form content rather than just a database front-end. Thirty8 Digital developed a stunning, flexible theme which allows us to rapidly develop narrative content in a way which is complementary to the exhibition development process.
— Mark Pajak, Head of Digital, Bristol Museums

What people say

  • Ella Roberts, Communications Manager, Britten-Pears Foundation, Britten-Pears Foundation

    I have worked with Thity8 Digital in the past and it was an easy decision to work with them again on a new project. This time it was to evaluate the Britten-Pears Foundation’s digital offer and work on a two-phased website project....

    Project: Britten-Pears Foundation

  • Stefan Marianski, Digital Officer, Freud Museum, Freud Museum

    As a small organisation with limited in-house expertise, Thirty8 has been a lifeline for us. This is a friendly, down-to-earth agency that is deeply committed to helping arts & heritage organisations with their digital....

    Project: Freud Museum

  • Sue Woolgar, Collections Manager, Southampton City Council, Counter Culture

    You and your team have provided us with an excellent piece of work which we can build on or update if we need to for a stage 1 application ...

    Project: Engine Room

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