One popular type of video posted on social media is the “reaction video”. If you’re unfamiliar, it’s a video of someone watching a video. Typically the video they are watching is surprising or shocking in some way. In many reaction videos you don’t even see the original – just the expressions on the watcher’s face.
So what if we bring this concept into real life?
Let’s talk about Reaction Rooms.
A museum might add a new room where patrons can watch other people’s reactions to works in the museum. Likely it would be at the end of the galleries, visited after the museum proper.
Some things to ponder:
Do you know going in that you will see reactions in the end? How would it change your experience if you know you were going to watch yourself react later? Would that enhance the art?
Could we have a museum where we show reactions to famous art? Like if people hate it or love it or are bored or whatever. Could the sharing of reactions be art in and of itself? For example, could we have an art piece in a unique frame that people look at. Then in the next room – identical to the first room, there are frames but instead inside are screens that show the reaction they just had to the art that was in this same frame in the other room?
Would the videos be real-time or a recorded best-of? Would the people in the video get to choose to share their best reactions? Would your reactions be captured on photo or video and sold to you like they sell photos of you on rides at amusement parks? What would it mean to buy a photo of yourself reacting to art? What would the social media implications be?
Reactions as a Personality Test
What about using that same personality data of your reactions to lead you to the next piece you ought to see to have a good reaction? Like how you might be lead down a path on Amazon based on your browsing history? Can we use your physical browsing history in a museum (especially one that is gigantic like the Met where you’re just not going to see it all) and suggest your next exhibit?
What if visiting the museum was like a personality test but instead of on paper, you just go look at things and AI figures out what your type is based on your reactions. Then maybe at the end it might introduce you to other people that had similar reactions? Or completely opposite reactions?
This idea of categorizing interests and personality based on physical browsing history is not limited to museums of course. It could be a theme park, or a nature park, or anywhere that you you might have options to choose from that would create a visible reaction.