BMA's Roots & Routes

User-Generated Storytelling Connects an Art Installation with Visitors' Pasts

A museum's mission to put their visitors at the center of their latest temporary exhibition led to an outpouring of highly personal storytelling.

The Baltimore Museum of Art has partnered with the Mississippi Museum of Art to curate an exhibition that explores stories of the Great Migration through contemporary art. The museums wanted visitors to "Reflect on this moment in history and consider [their] own family ancestry through the eyes and work of 12 Black artists", in turn sharing their own stories of migration through a custom storytelling interactive entitled "Roots & Routes" created by Guru Experience Co

In Roots & Routes, users enter a private booth where they are prompted to record audio, video, or simply take a photo and write their story about how migration was or is a part of their life journey. Users add dates and locations that the interactive combines with their stories to show the movement their life trajectories through time. The museum team then has a chance to review the stories for appropriateness and publish them for other visitors to explore. 

This ground-breaking exhibition will be touring the US along with this interactive, so be sure to catch it at its next venue, The Brooklyn Museum of Art, until June 25th!