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Configuring slow technology through social and embodied interaction: making time for reflection in augmenter reality museum experiences with young visitors

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Areti Galani



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of a book chapter that has been published in its final definitive form by Routledge, 2019.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


This chapter critically explores the challenges and opportunities of the design and implementation of slow digital interactive technologies (Hallnäs & Redström 2001) in museum exhibition spaces for the purpose of creating novel immersive and dialogic opportunities for visitors to engage with museum collections and other visitors. The article draws on a research-through-design digital interpretation project that took place in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK: an augmented reality interactive installation related to the famous children’s story The Borrowers by Mary Norton (1952) as part of a year-long exhibition in Seven Stories, National Centre for Children's Books. The installation used sensor driven interaction and presence sensing technology to create a space for a reflexive and embodied engagement with the exhibition topics, i.e. the fictional characters in the story of the Borrowers. The chapter critically reflects on the value of embedding slow technology in a museum setting - with emphasis on the legibility of the interaction space, and the negotiation of visitor and museum staff expectations of novel digital interventions. The chapter argues that implementations of slow technology in museum settings provide opportunities for anticipatory and reflective museum experiences by reconfiguring the experience of museum dwelling. Their effect, however, is dependent on the meaningful negotiation of their relationship to the dominant paradigms of big-button interaction that continue to shape the digital imagination of museum visitors and staff.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Galani A, Clarke R

Editor(s): Lewi, H

Publication type: Book Chapter

Publication status: Published

Book Title: International Handbook in New Digital Practices in Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums and Heritage Sites

Year: 2019

Print publication date: 12/11/2019

Acceptance date: 11/05/2018

Publisher: Routledge


Library holdings: Search Newcastle University Library for this item

ISBN: 9781138581296