How do you explore such concepts as ‘the future’ and ‘strategy’ in a museum setting? That was the challenge in designing an exhibition to celebrate Philips’ 125th anniversary. Since objects can never truly be futuristic – they’re potentially outdated from the moment they’re realized – Innovation and You at the Philips Museum in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, centres on the company’s innovation drivers: big data, sensing, imaging, personalization, and connecting. Visitors don’t just read about these drivers; they actually experience them through a series of interactive installations.
What makes Philips tick?
‘Until then, Philips had never really defined or expressed its innovation drivers,’ says NorthernLight cofounder Peter Slavenburg. ‘I like the idea that the company did some soul-searching to make the exhibition possible.’ Rather than focus on products or end results, Philips brought forth terms such as ‘personalization’ and ‘big data’: technological and societal changes that drive the company to innovate. Visitors get a glimpse into the future to see how digitization is helping to develop personalized diagnoses and predict epidemics.
Five innovation drivers, five experiences
Based on Philips’ defined drivers, five interactive projections communicate how modern technology is changing lives. Controlled via gestures, the large-scale projections respond to the movement of visitors. Because the ‘screens’ are invisible, the installations – unlike products – are timeless.
Exhibition-goers personally and directly interact with information. When passing by a projection, for instance, visitors’ heights are registered and compared with those of celebrities, whereas the imaging installation exposes the audience’s insides. The experience-driven exhibition culminates at viewing stations, where Philips shows a continually updated portfolio of recent projects.
NorthernLight has been working with Philips for many years to communicate the company’s innovations with the public at large. In 2014 NorthernLight developed Mission Eureka, an iPad game for the Philips Museum. A year earlier, the team created 100 Years of Philips Inventions, an exhibition for Museum Boerhaave in the Netherlands.
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