Is happiness the new business of museums? We Are Museums founder Diane Dubray re-examines the role of museums in an age of technology and data overload, anxiety, depression and social interaction disabilities. In addition to wellness retreats and meditation, she asks “can we add chilling at the museum on the list of magic words to access happiness?” An interesting exploration of the shifting role of museums in the 21st century. Read more.
Public green space done right: San Francisco’s new Salesforce Transit Center vs. NYC’s High Line
Designer Matthew Okazaki has written a compelling comparison of two urban green spaces: the recently opened Salesforce Transit Center in San Francisco, and NYC’s High Line, in operation since 2009. He calls it “a missed opportunity in the urban integration of old and new San Francisco. Its design is one that proudly celebrates its difference from the rest of the city and refuses to engage with the old”. Users of the new transit center, on the other hand, are calling it “overwhelming” and “awesome”. No matter where you stand on this spectrum, it’s clear that in these two increasingly expensive and busy cities, public green space is a hotly debated and valuable commodity. Read more.
This new museum doesn’t want Instagram or crowds. Does that make it elitist?
In a reaction against the “Mona Lisa moment” that so many of us have experienced at the Louvre, craning to snap a photo of one of the most popular works of art in the world amongst throngs of other people doing the same thing, an art institution in Maryland is taking a different approach. While the Glenstone has been around since 2006, they have recently undergone a huge expansion, with five times more exhibition space than previously. Although they will be able to accommodate more people, visitors will be limited through an online reservation system. The founders have aimed to create “refined indoor and outdoor spaces designed to facilitate meaningful encounters for our visitors”. The expanded pavilions open on October 4th. Read more.
How does design impact our emotions?
The London Design Biennale opened earlier this month in Somerset House, examining the relationship between design, social needs and our emotional responses. Paul Hekkert, head of Industrial Design at Delft University of Technology, states that our reliance on instant gratification, “the belief that buying new shiny stuff made us happy”, is starting to wear thin. Conversely, it’s generally accepted that good relationships, being healthy and an active social life are all crucial to long-term happiness. Read more.
Small art, big impact at the first Dubai urban art show
The UK-based installation artist and photographer Slinkachu is known for his miniature street art, having created cheeky works in London, Paris, to name a few. What began as a side project from his advertising job in 2006 has evolved into the ongoing ‘little people project’, using miniature train set figurines and photography to create his works. His recent exhibition in Hamburg reminded of his creations in 2016 as part of Dubai Walls, the first event of its kind featuring sixteen street artists. Read more.