NMM Compass Lounge

– with Kin Associates –

The Compass Lounge within the new Sammy Ofer wing of the National Maritime Museum is comfortable space where visitors can explore the museum’s vast archive and understand it’s contemporary relevance through digital technology.

The space has three key interactive experiences within it. At the far end of the Lounge sits the Horizon Screen, a five screen panoramic display pulling people from the back of the wing into the lounge. The aim of the Horizon Screen is to communicate the breadth of the archive. 4000 high resolution images form a sea of content that flows towards the viewer. The images are organised by their visual similarity to each other and visitors can roll through the content using a giant trackball.

The second key experience is The Plan Chest, a large map cabinet housing two drawers, each containing a touchscreen. Every time a drawer is opened the visitor is presented with a random slice of the collections from the archive. Five different image clusters reflect user activity from the online museum collection. Visitors can explore and interrogate high resolution images and then email these to themselves or others. When a user selects an image to view, a hidden LED display above the drawers shows the archive accession number associated with that object.

Compass Lounge

Horizon Screen

Planchest with Accession number LED display

Plan chest feeds in a random slice of user activity from the online archive

close-up exploration of an archive object changes the accession number on the LED display

Compass pods