The Digital Diorama
The goal of the Digital Diorama project is to raise awareness of the dioramas currently present in Natural History Museums, both as works of art and as representations of natural environments that many people are unfamiliar with. A further, and no less important, aim is to provide novel perspectives on the biological theme of life and the characteristics of living things, communicating them more effectively than conventional educational approaches in schools or in the media.
Another key feature is the project’s emphasis on relating the DD’s contents to aspects of everyday life. This is designed to enhance users’ sense of space, by evoking everyday actions (cats are predators just like lions and tigers) or concepts (we filter our tea in the same way that animals filter water) that audiences can easily identify with and readily associate with the contents of the Digital Diorama. In this way, learning about living things should become an integral and valuable part of users’ general knowledge base, whether they are schoolgoers or interested adults committed to lifelong learning.
The Digital Diorama is designed both for children, who are prompted by its novel technological and educational format to ask questions, reflect and engage in discussion with their peers… and for adults, whom it helps to develop an active interest in the unfolding of life instead of passively assimilating information provided by the media.