The Isaac Sack Gallery in the Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth College seems like any other American Art gallery at first. It houses paintings, sculptures, and artifacts from the colonial era all the way until the middle of the 20th Century. Visitors stroll up to the art, look at it for a few seconds (some even read the informational plaques), and then move on. They see visiting an art museum as a viewing experience, an experience made by what they see.
Although in an art museum, it would seem intuitive that the artwork itself is what engages the viewer, the design of the exhibit as a space has more of an effect on the interaction between the viewer and the art. By examining how the exhibition emphasizes the art it holds, we can better understand how viewers experience their surroundings and how we can create and manipulate spaces to create a certain experience for users.
All photographs taken by the author.