In 2019, the Kaunas City Museum and its partners, the Faculty of Communication of Vilnius University and Public Institution “Akademinė leidyba,“ implemented the project “Exposition Expansion of Mikas and Kipras Petrauskas Branch of the Kaunas City Museum, using the Augmented Reality Technology” partly financed by the Lithuanian Council of Culture. The project was allocated 11,000 euros. The total value of the project was 12,785.60 euros. The M. and K. Petrauskas Branch of the Museum possibly has the greatest musical potential in Lithuania: the collection of the Museum is focused on the accumulation and dissemination of the heritage of Lithuanian professional music creators. It has accumulated over 37 thousand exhibits: notes, manuscripts, photographs, documents, and various audio recordings, while the exhibitions, i.e. the memorial flat of Kipras Petrauskas and the modern exhibition “State Theater. The Music that brings the Nation together” reveals the outstanding personalities and events of the Lithuanian musical world. However, most exhibits of the Museum branch are unique and fragile and should be protected under special conditions; moreover, their display time is concise, and the space and display conditions are limited. Flat display often creates a static impression, and the visitor gets lost in a large flow of information. The modern person can perceive spatial information better. This requires different, more innovative, and versatile forms of transmitting information that allow the visitor to experience the story rather than read it.
The target group of the project is individual museum visitors of different ages and hobbies, who explore the museum exhibitions independently. Unlike the participants of educational activities and excursions, with whom it is communicated directly, individual visitors experience difficulties as they often get lost in the abundant flow of information.
During the implementation of the project, the mobile app with the augmented reality function was created, which ensures greater dissemination of the museum funds, allows to activate musical static or flat exhibits, conveys the Lithuanian music history in an innovative and attractive way, reveals the context of its development, significantly expands the Museum exhibitions, and increases their attractiveness both from the point of view of content and form.
We believe that the mobile application “Petrauskas the RemARkable” with the augmented reality function will better meet the expectations of the modern visitor. Augmented Reality is a combination of physical reality and digital content, which works in real time and responds to user’s movements on a smart device. Because of this function, visitors walk around the memorial flat of Kipras Petrauskas and the exposition “State Theater. The Music that brings the Nation together” and can safely explore many interesting, unique, and fragile exhibits which should be preserved under special conditions and which cannot be exhibited by the Museum in reality. The app can be used by an unlimited number of visitors. Visitors just need to point their smartphone or tablet with Android operating system to the exhibition space and slowly search for hidden interactive content: videos, audios and music excerpts, additional textual information, GIF content, illustrations, and photo albums. If you connect your headphones to your smart device, you can do it in a comfortable way without interfering others. The smart application allows visitors to independently choose the information that they want to find out based on their area of interest. This way, when searching for interactive points, visitors themselves can select the content of their own interest and focus only on the information that is relevant to them.
The application can be download free of charge from the Google Play Store. It is recommended to use the application only in good light and only with sufficient (at least 50%) battery charge.