@MarDixon Passionate about culture. Champion for the next generation of Cultural visitors. Defender of Libraries. Digital, Wearable Tech Enthusiast. Sharing knowledge. Troublemaker and/or advocate, depending on what you need.
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    April 25th, 2016mardixonCulture, International

    IMG_9355MuseumNext was held in Dublin 18-20 of April. A few of us decided to make the most of our first time in Dublin and arrived on the Saturday to start exploring early. We weren’t the only ones!

    Highly recommend Guinness Storehouse tour which is more of an experience through history.  But lets get to MuseumNext. Monday April 18th we all registered. This is the best time for me as I get to see many MuseumNext friends I haven’t seen for a year. I signed up to join a tour but missed it and instead went to:

    A Spirited History at National Gallery of Ireland which had representatives from Guinness, Jamison company and another archivist. Having visited Guinness Storehouse it was fascinating to see the balance of teaching the story through the archive and providing an experience for the general public (20% of people who come to Guinness Storehouse have never tried it), the point was they have a brand name people know and recognize and through the Storehouse have to share the story and not let those people down who come for another reason (adverts etc).

    IMG_9295In the evening, Mark Macleod and I hosted the Networking for First Timers at the Little Museum of Dublin. The venue was perfect and it was great that non-first timers knew they were more than welcomed to attend.

    Afterwards we all went over to the Irish Museum of Modern Art for tours and wonderful conversations. Read the rest of this entry »

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    October 13th, 2015mardixonCulture, International, Tech

    For the first time ever MuseumNext moved from Europe to the states with wonderful host the Indianapolis Museum of Art. I always knew this was going to be something special but both MuseumNext and IMA outdid even my expectations!  A very special thank you to Scott StulenSilvia Filippini Fantoni from IMA and Jim Richardson and Kala Preston for managing to pull off the best conference to date!

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    As always, MuseumNext is more than ‘just a conference’. The fringe, networking and fun around the one (but really two days…) conference. Am I bias about MuseumNext? Of course! But it’s like a family to me – even though the delegates change there is always a warmth and familiarness with MuseumNext.

    Read the rest of this entry »

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    September 7th, 2015mardixonCulture, International

    When I was invited to be on a panel for a conference in Bueconferencenos Aires, I thought ‘This could be interesting.’

    I can not explain what an understatement that was.

    Although Buenos Aires was the host, this conference was for all of Latin America and the people who work/live there. But really it  was for everyone to listen, watch and learn from.

    Takeaways are always difficult in conference but for me, it was easy: the people. The people who came to make a difference. There is a sense of oppression but not defeat. They want to move forward, grow and make differences for the next generation without ever forgetting their past. It was almost spiritual in that regard.

    There were many fringe events around the talks – I and many others made new life-long friends thanks to this conference.

    The speakers where diverse: by country, age, topic and message but all inspired. I struggled with my wifi (my fault) but I took notes. I don’t often share my notes word for word but for this conference there is an exception: Read the rest of this entry »

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    June 19th, 2015mardixonCulture, International

    IMG_5842CultureGeek Conference is run by Sumo – the same people who run MuseumNext conference.  The emphasis is on digital media in the cultural sector and their one-day line included:

    Jiajia Fie – Associate Director Digital Marketing – Guggenheim
    Sarah Ellis – Head of Digital Development – Sarah Ellis
    Rob Gethen Smith – CIO – Southbank Centre
    Conrad Bodman – Head of International Relationships – British Film Institute
    Stella Eisdom – Digital Curator – British Library
    Alice Rawsthorn – Design critic and author
    Chris Michaels – Head of Digital and Publishing – British Museum

    The conference started the evening before with DrinksThing at Southbank hosting a Behind the Scenes Tour.  For those that managed to attend, I’m sure they’ll agree that Neil the tour guide was a gem in bringing the story of the building alive.  And those on my tour all fell in love with Ivan (see periscope/YouTube for that story)

    I’ve storied my tweets here if you want the bite-size version. Read the rest of this entry »

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    June 14th, 2015mardixonCulture, International

    This year We Are Museums was held in Berlin and hosting at the amazing Jewish Museum. For those that don’t know, WAM has been running for 3 years and has a very meaningful mission:

    We Are Museums is a human adventure at the intersection of culture and innovation. During two days, it gathers an active and creative community of professionals who meet, exchange and build together to open art institutions to the people. We Are Museums is a self-sufficient, vibrant platform which promotes smart and forward thinking ideas as well as sustainable benefits for our participants.

    An overall of highlights:

    Sree Streenivasan ran a Social Media Workshop the evening before. His Storify is here. I’ve been to a few of Sree’s workshops and it’s great that he allows interaction from the audience. This audience was open to Berlin so the delegates were from museums, journalism, makers and everything in between.

    IMG_5104 Read the rest of this entry »

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    April 26th, 2015mardixonCulture, International, Tech

    JimFirst – a huge thank you to Jim Richadson and his team for pulling off another amazing MuseumNext conference. Every year I say it’s the best and while I know it has to grow I worry that it’ll lose that special je ne sais quoi. Not a worry at all. Jim brought in Kala Preston as new Director of MuseumNext and between them they managed to create a very large-scale international museum conference with a familiar and home-y feel about it. THANK YOU! (And bring on MuseumNext USA at Indianapolis Museum of Art this September!)

    hotdogsI have to mention the people. From registration to closing talks – so many familiar AND new faces this year but what was brilliant to see was the connections. Yes the regulars talked to each other but ‘newbies’ we’re encouraged and folded into the conversation. I don’t recall seeing anyone stand by themselves for too long unless they wanted to. You don’t get that at any other conference the way MuseumNext manages to do it. It’s wonderful to watch from the side-lines and see so many new connections and relationship start at MuseumNext. The key is to keep the conversations going! Read the rest of this entry »

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    June 16th, 2013mardixonCulture, International

    wearemuseumA few months ago, I heard about We Are Museums, a 2-day event for professionals of culture and innovation being organized in Vilinus Lithuania by Diane Drubay, founder of Buzzeum based in Paris. I signed up to go immediately and then checked on the map to see where I was going.

    All I really knew about We are Museums was Diane was bringing together diverse speakers to share ‘the same passion about art, innovation and culture, like all the dots which form a nebula, the image we chose to embody the conference’.

    We are Museums did that and more.

    The conference was more than just speakers – We are Museums arranged for lots of fringe and activities to give everyone the opportunity to network – not just sit and listen.  

    While every speaker added value to the conference, the following were my takeaways:

    Read the rest of this entry »

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    May 5th, 2013mardixonCulture, International

    mw-logo-cropped_biggerThere have been a few fabulous and very detailed post on Museum on the Web which I’m not going to try and compete with.  Instead, after being home for a few weeks (and finally getting over jet lag) these are the items that still are prominent with me.

    Facebook killed 25% of the website

    While in the Tate web assessment session, we were asked to come up with a profile of an average visitor to a website.  Originally we had a personal website but soon realized the profile required a more established website and as Guggenheim was within our group, they were duly elected. Read the rest of this entry »

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    November 12th, 2012mardixonCulture, International

    One of the last sessions of the Museum Association Conference was Michael Spender from Poole Museum and I talking about the Social Museum.  While we were referring to museums themselves being social, it did obviously integrate social media into the talk.

    The concept is simple:  Have a social environment within your museum and it will shine through via the social media.  The social environment could be created with an open plan office, where  lines of communications are opened and barriers (walls) are removed.

    Our’s was a Soapbox session which was great as I took the opportunity to mention a few tips such as:

    • Do not let your social media sit within your PR department.  Allow everyone to tweet for you – if you don’t trust them to tweet for you, don’t let them in your museum.
    • Visitors recognize when there is discourse within a museum.  Why would visitors want to come to a museum with long faces, even though free, when they can go to the movies for a few hours and leave with a smile?
    • Museums who are knew or unsure can get involved with hashtags to get involved online.  Of course we mentioned CultureThemes (as Michael and I are both Founding members) but there are many to get involved with.
    • Making mistakes on social media is OK! Not only does it show your human, but it shows things aren’t scripted.  If the mistake is more than a typo – just apologize (and be genuine about it).

    The tweets (pdf) from our session are available to download here.

    I’ll be writing more about the conference in another post.

     

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    September 15th, 2012mardixonCulture, International

    CultureGeeek is the sister conference of MuseumNext hosted by the fabulous team at Sumo Design.  This one day conference had an incredibly impressive line up.

    First up was Keynote speaker Andy Levey from Cirque du Soleil.  His incredibly informative talk really emphasised the need for good personality, good relationship with the audience and good knowledge with what tools work best for your needs.

    Read the rest of this entry »

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