The Daily Beast makes a big deal about all of the art apps being produced by museums and galleries. Though Spencer Bailey is quick to point out that museums are conflicted. They want to use apps to market to their patrons and provide convenient information on handheld devices but they also fret that the app might become a distraction from the art. However, looking at the sample of apps that the Daily Beast provides, only a handful seem dazzling and useful enough to really distract:
“It’s like the Wild West right now,” said Nancy Proctor, head of mobile strategy and initiatives at the Smithsonian Institution. “It’s our own mini-dot-com boom.”
While some museum-based apps came out about a year ago, the majority of them have just started to hit the market this summer. Toura’s first app, for example, was released in conjunction with The Pace Gallery in May 2010. Since then, the company’s produced a slew of others—one for the Smithsonian’s Hirschhorn Museum, another for the Royal Academy of Arts in the U.K., and two more for Pace—with apps for the Art Institute of Chicago and Pace’s 50th-anniversary retrospective set to come out in September. On top of that, Toura plans to release apps not just for iPhones, but also iPads, Androids, and eventually BlackBerrys.
The Art App Boom (Daily Beast)