has launched a new app, designed to enable visitors to lead their own journey around the galleries on their smartphones. With support from Bloomberg Philanthropies, the app is the latest development of the Bloomberg Connects offering at Tate and provides a more bespoke, behind-the-scenes and personalised experience than a traditional museum audio-guide. A trial version of the app was released for iOS mobile devices last year, with 13,000 downloads so far, and the full version is now available for free on both iOS and Android via the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. It can be downloaded in advance of a visit or in the gallery on Tates free Wi-Fi.
Conceived with design agency Fabrique, the Tate app brings together everything visitors need to explore the galleries and learn more about the art they encounter at Tate Britain, Tate Modern and Tate Liverpool, with Tate St Ives to follow later this year when the gallery reopens. On opening the app, users are given three easy-to-navigate options Art, Activity and Eat & Shop each of which provides information about what can be seen, experienced and enjoyed in the museum that day. Over 600 iBeacons, installed throughout the buildings by digital wayfinding experts Movin, allow the app to tell visitors exactly where they are in real time. It can then help to direct them towards their favourite works of art, to a special event or performance, or simply to the nearest place to get a coffee.
Within the galleries, users are also able to access in-depth information about the collection displays through the app, including wider art movements and histories as well as individual artists and works. Over 350 audio clips from Tates digital archives, including specially-recorded interviews with curators and artists, are available in the palm of your hand. From modern masters like Agnes Martin and Jackson Pollock to contemporary figures like Meschac Gaba and Suzanne Lacy, visitors can now hear unique insights into Tates collection in the artists own words.
Bloomberg Philanthropies works with the museum to expand the ways in which Tates millions of visitors engage with arts and artists. Bloomberg Connects is Bloomberg Philanthropies programme designed to increase access to the arts. The support has enabled the Tate to create a host of ways for visitors to interact with, understand and discuss the things they see in Tates galleries. For exampleTate Shots, an online series of short films, has now received over 6.5 million views. Immersive Explore spaces in Tate Moderns Switch House provide information about the displays as part of an interactive experience, while the touchscreen Timeline of Modern Art and the Digital Drawing Bar allow visitors of all ages to learn about art and flex their creative muscles.
Kerstin Mogull, Managing Director of Tate, said We are always looking for new ways to give our visitors the best experience possible. The Tate app is designed to be simple, useful and fun, putting the whole gallery in the palm of your hand for free. Our museums are becoming increasingly active spaces with even more diverse programmes, so its important for us to provide an easy way for everyone to get the most from Tate. This is just one of the projects we have created through the Bloomberg Connects partnership, all of which use new technologies to help people enjoy and engage with great art.