The Apollo Digital Innovation of the Year Award commends organisations harnessing digital technology to advance access to, or knowledge of art. We’re pleased to reveal our shortlist below: the winner will be announced in the December issue of Apollo. This award has generously been sponsored by Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management.
Since 2010, collectors of art, antiques and other luxury products have been able to organise their holdings remotely using the web-based platform Collectrium. The secure system acts as database or catalogue, and allows users to keep track of insurance and storage details, as well as monitoring their collection’s market value. Collectrium’s own value to the art world became clear in February, when it was acquired by Christie’s for a reported price of $16 million. Click here for more about Collectrium and art tech start-ups.
Many museums, alert to the promise of new technologies, are digitising their collections. A logical next step is to find new audiences and uses for these resources. Museofabber works with European museums and schools to produce 3D-printed replicas of collection items for classroom use. Nikolaos Maniatis, who leads the project, sees it as a means of transforming public engagement with cultural treasures, which are traditionally handled only by professionals.
Condition reporting is a time-consuming necessity, required whenever an artwork is moved, loaned or changes hands. Articheck, founded by former Tate paper conservator Annika Erikson, has streamlined and standardised the process by bringing it online. Users of the app can create, approve and store detailed reports, building up an easily accessible record of an object’s provenance, exhibition history, and state of repair.
Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
People with disabilities are now able to explore the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco remotely, using Suitable Technologies’ ‘Beam’ tour system. Users with internet connection can connect with and steer manoeuvrable robotic devices around the galleries. Built-in cameras and audio equipment allow them to view artworks in high definition and interact directly with staff, while determining their own route through the building.
Million Image Database
Institute for Digital Archaeology
The Million Image Database aims to compile a photographic record of endangered sites and artifacts in the Middle East. Thousands of cameras are being shipped from the IDA’s Oxford base to regional volunteers, whose photographs are uploaded to an online database. This material will be processed to produce 3D-renderings of the original objects. From spring next year, the evolving digital catalogue will be released as an open-access hub.