Praxis Posts

Thanks for the View!

For this first post, I'd like to say thank you to a few people who have paved the road we all travel.

Like everyone who will read this post, every day I do my best to advocate for the public we serve, the clients we represent, and the profession we are privileged to share.  Some days I even get the heady feeling that I have traveled enough miles to have gained some vision.

But by the eighteenth cup of half-caf, I realize that what I thought was vision is really just the great view I get by standing on the shoulders of giants.

Tom Schlereth, thanks for teaching us to think about the meaning of everyday objects.  Bob Staples, thanks for setting the standard for our profession of creating aesthetically rich environments.  Barbara Charles, thank you for showing us how to landscape that environment with a compelling evidentiary narrative.  And for filling that landscape with an authentic and urgent voice, thanks to Ralph Appelbaum.

Who should I thank for showing us the explosive potential of graphics on an environmental scale?  Who was it that made interactivity the core concept of the exhibit experience?  And who took museums out of the lecture hall into the adventure-land of storytelling?  Any suggestions? Well, thank you too!

I must also shout out thanks to CFM Director Elizabeth Merritt for assuring us in her monthly blog that there is a future for Museums.  We've got a lot of work to do to build on the foundation laid by the "pioneer generation" as we address emerging opportunities to make museums a social commons of universal design, self-curation, augmented and virtual realities, entrepreneurship, and fluid adaptation to dynamic user and host input.

And that's why I want to close with a thank you to the folks at Praxis for all the great work you do, for offering the chance to use the Designer's Voice and for being the kind of colleagues that make this work fun.  After all, how can we delight our visitors if we don't have delight in our work?


Dan Murphy, Principal - The PRD Group

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Designer's Voice