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de Young Museum

de Youngsters Studio

de Youngsters Studio is a free play space for children and their caregivers at the de Young, San Francisco's oldest fine arts museum. The space provides hands-on unstructured play and learning opportunities in a traditionally do-not-touch environment.

This ambitious project uses a mixture of physical play and digital screen-based interactions. The space is divided into five areas focused on Color, Composition, Shape/Form, Texture and Sculpture. A sixth area highlights connections between the museum's permanent collection and what kids are making.

The five areas are powered by custom software, mostly written in C++ with the openFrameworks library. Due to the riggors of a public space and 7-days-per-week operation, the software runs on embedded PCs typically used in an industrial setting. All devices are connected to a secure local network designed specifically for the permanent space.

A small, interdisciplinary team of designers, fabricators and technologists built and installed all of the technology in the space in six months, following a few months of concept development and initial design work. The concept development and 3D design of the space are by Fuseproject, and the detailed design, build management and technology were provided by Tellart.

My contributions:
interaction prototypes for user testing; production software development; management (Head of Production)

Interaction design and overall design/build - Tellart
Conceptual design - fuseproject
Architecture and engineering - Chris DeHenzel, Jon Brody Engineers
Fabrication and installation - Chicago Scenic Studios, Scenic Inc., 42 Design Fab, Sterling Graphics

Photography: Tellart

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