Autumn 2020 / Muse / User Experience & Interface Design

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The challenge

How can people experience public art during a pandemic?


Muse is an interactive, panoramic app for art lovers to learn new facts and share their thoughts about public art and artists with others around the world.



My Role

Visual Design, Interaction Design, User Testing, Field Research


4 months (Feb - May 2020)


Give the context to the project. What was your role? How long did it take? What did you do? Any testimonials?

Our team partnered with Metro21: Smart Cities Institute, a research institute devoted to finding solutions for challenges in metro areas, to study how public art contributes to a city’s livability. For this project, our client wanted us to focus on the current state of public art in cities (Pittsburgh, in our case) and explore how art can show a city’s cultural investment and enhance people’s lives.

We scoped our project around the understanding that public art helps connect the general public. Prior to the pandemic, viewers could bond and make memories when visiting public art together. Public art venues are now closed around the world, stranding people from visiting public art. We wanted to address the issue of experiencing public art during this pandemic.


Understanding the problem space


Metro21 conducted several stakeholder interviews, field interviews, and usability tests for Pittsburgh’s Office of Public Arts website. We created a stakeholder map and a customer journey map from this data to understand how art viewers and other stakeholders interact with the city’s art.

Pittsburgh’s public is uninvolved with the city’s art – The 2 maps helped me understand that Pittsburgh’s public art scene includes a lot of different stakeholders like artists, curators, and property owners. However, the general public is uninterested in the city’s art, and is frustrated by the lack of information about local artists and artwork.