Innovative ideas for cultural and creative sectors in Europe

Formenova

Art goes Virtual

Formenova is a platform that provides innovative virtual environment for connecting art, its makers & spectators. Three dimensional virtual exhibition space, designed to present art with full support of architectural background. It can be used by cultural institutions and individual artists to exhibit, promote and communicate.

Innovation

Current ways of promotion culture in the internet have one defect. They are to flat and insufficient to cope with the complex subject as ART is. But they have one advantage - they can be improved. Formenova was thought to create aesthetic architectural context for exhibition actions. Why is it so needed: 1) Art need more sophisticated and sensitive context than a flat internet site, where artist insert pictures. 2) Thanks to three dimensional interiors artists can present their works in virtual imitation of real galleries. It is chipper - they don't have to pay huge amounts of money for renting exhibition space. It is easier - creating virtual gallery saves their time and energy they can spent on the act of creation. It is efficient - they can fully get with their works to spectators all over the world, search fans and patrons. 3) Cultural institutions can get to wider group of spectators. Those who live far from culture centers, people with disabilities, or simply those that don't have time for traveling and visiting culture institutions. Virtual walk through the museum/gallery can be an alternative way of promotion, can encourage spreading the culture. 4) Finally people with disabilities or communication problems will find a way to stay close to art & culture. Formenova is also to develop tools supporting visual disabilities, helping those who have problems see the art.

Technology

The main technical objective of the Formenova project is to provide wide accessible, well designed and best quality product. To handle that, all parts of project have to use up-to-date technologies. Formenova is a web based, cloud hosted application. It can be run easily by internet browser just like a regular webpage. Thanks to this application user don't need to pass any complicated installation and update process. User interface is build on HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript technologies. This is very flexible approach that allows to easy and dynamic fit and modify application interface to meet all user needs. All available changes may affect both, the visual and the interaction layer of interface to provide most adapted product. On all levels user interface bases on WAI ARIA guidelines to provide product that is fully supported by screen readers and other tools helpful for people with disabilities. On all supported devices user interface can be extended by three-dimensional environment build on WebGL technology. It allows to enrich form of the presentation. For example user interface can be integrated with the fully three-dimensional model of visited gallery, or user is able to view sculpture models. WebGL is supported by all modern web browsers. Formenova also provides real time audio/video communication layer based on WEB.RTC technology. All content collected in the data base will be tagged in semantic way to customize the data to the future standards such as WEB 3.0

Target Group

Formenova is to be destined for wide group of recipients. 1) For artists and cultural institutions. They are going to receive tools of internet promotion - - visual (complete interiors) - social (different ways of communication with spectators - social media, chat, video conference) - image (thanks to possibility of creating cultural events and building individual exhibition environment they will be able to fully show their artistic intention). 2) For art spectators. Regular users will receive tool allowing them to experience art from distant part of the word. Paintings, photographs, sculptures will be wrapped in completed interior, emphasizing their value.

Implementation

Works on the project last for a year. During that time we did: - market research among artists, cultural institutions and regular users, that confirmed our theory that this kind of product is needed - we wrote business plan - technology research, which confirmed possibility of introducing all of features we assumed - we prepared the first version of application engine - we configured whole project environment (servers, first version of the internet site) Next steps are: - architectural project of first exposition space (done) - preparing demo version of the product to collect users feedback (almost done) - searching for clients - artists and institutions - basing on the information from demo version, we are going to start working on full version of product - marketing & promotion - at the beginning: social and regular media - searching for investor (business angel, venture capital)

Sustainability

Product will be funded from 3 sources: 1) Standard exposition modules. Formenova will provide virtual galleries in few well chosen architectural styles. User will be able to chose among them and adjust them to his needs (size, materials, lights types). Standard exposition modules will have constant prices per monthly use. It will be main core of our funding. 2) Individual exposition modules - prepared for individual order; special prices. 3) Cultural institutions in the net - we can prepare the virtual counterpart of the exiting interiors of the galleries & museums and their collections. We also think about introducing the institution of art patron, who can help chosen artists to promote. It is a subject for further consideration.