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Brief Published: 19 Nov 2014

Rijksmuseum Links Selfies to Art

Rijks Emotions concept sketch

Students from Swedish digital media education institution Hyper Island have developed a campaign concept for Amsterdam's Rijksmuseum in the Netherlands to attract younger audiences.

Rijks Emotions matches selfies uploaded by visitors with portraits from the museum's collection. Facial recognition software will determine a person's age, gender and expression, using those metrics to display their artistic doppelganger on an interactive screen.

Art doppelgangers – modern people finding lookalikes in historic paintings – are already a meme, and the Museum of Selfies Tumblr started dragging portrait paintings into the present earlier this month.

Considering the staggering amount of artworks displayed at national galleries across the globe, the concept has potential for hyper-targeted curation. Museums and galleries could serve up artworks to a visitor's own device, along with educational info and further recommendations, customised according to their mood, demographic or unique identity. The Rubens House in Antwerp already uses iBeacons to push informative content and interactions to visitors.

We talk more about iBeacons and contextual engagement in The State of Mobile: Summer 2014 and our Post-Digital Macro Trend.