Compared with large comprehensive museums with comprehensive exhibits, small number of specialized museums tend to “specialize in one field” and “surprise” to attract specific audiences. During the summer vacation, more and more visitors enter the “minority” museum to punch in. The “minority” museum is becoming more and more popular with the rising popularity. The exhibits have become more and more popular from the relatively “unpopular” in previous years.
How do specialized museums attract visitors? A reporter from China News Network will take you to some “niche” museums to see their fancy “powder absorption secret”.
Visitors are filming exhibits in the National Animal Museum. Photographed by Hao Lingyu
Move 1: “Hard Qigong” with unique skills
The collections of specialized museums are often the concentrated display of items in a certain field, and their professional irreplaceable nature has firmly caught the eye of many visitors.
During the summer vacation, Beijing citizen Liu Jiawen and her son visited the China Film Museum for the third time. She said that she and her children love movies very much, and they always have to buy tickets after each visit. “Today I also said that I must watch an IMAX animation.”
It is understood that the China Film Museum will continue to broadcast various types of films in the exhibition hall of the museum and regularly organize special film exhibitions in addition to displaying the exhibits related to films. This combination of exhibition and exhibition is the “hard qigong” practiced by the film museum, which has really attracted many film lovers to visit continuously.
Like the film museum, the “powerful” specialized museum also has the National Animal Museum, which is famous for its collection of specimens in the scientific community. There are more than 8.93 million specimens of all kinds of animals, covering the main groups and representative species distributed in China. The specimen is the “gold-lettered signboard” of the museum to attract tourists.
Zhang Jinshuo, deputy curator of the National Animal Museum, told the reporter of China News Network that all the specimens in the museum that visitors can see at present are peeled specimens, which are more vivid than the fake peeled specimens used in scientific research. Some also simulate the living state of animals when they live, allowing the audience to observe the detailed characteristics of animals at a very close distance.
During the interview, the reporter met Ma Tao who was visiting the National Animal Museum. As a student of China Agricultural University, Ma Tao came to visit the museum just because he was attracted by specimens. “I’ve only seen sporadic specimens in some museums before, and it’s the first time I’ve seen so many,” he said.
Visitors visit the exhibits in the National Animal Museum. Photographed by Hao Lingyu
Move 2: “Eight sections of brocade” to open the meridians
Specialized museums tend to gather many professionals in the field. These academic giants not only make frequent appearances in the museum, but also go out of the museum, enter the campus, approach the media, and approach netizens. By opening up their own communication “meridians”, they boost the audience’s enthusiasm for museum exploration.
In May this year, Zhang Chenliang, director of the China National Geographic magazine’s financial media center, who is known as the “director of the Tibetan fox”, visited the National Animal Museum. The video of his visit attracted many young fans to visit later. For a long time, professionals like Zhang Jinshuo and Zhang Chenliang have been committed to “package” and spread the knowledge in the museum to attract the audience to “punch in”.
For example, by interpreting the hot events such as the migration of Yunnan elephants to the south and the escape of Hangzhou leopards, the online popular science “up masters” have made more people interested in the living habits and environment of animals and plants, and then led people to enter relevant professional museums, bringing a wave of attention to natural science.
Offline interaction channels are also important. The National Animal Museum has established a long-term cooperative relationship with some primary schools. It not only invites students to participate in activities in the museum, but also sends staff in the museum to give lectures in the school.
“I have been taking popular science classes in primary schools for 12 years since I just started working at the National Animal Museum,” said Zhang Jinshuo.
According to him, the museum will also organize students to participate in scientific exploration activities and learn scientific research methods. This kind of inquiry learning activity has played a good role in the social education function of the museum. “Many students will make PPT to show their learning achievements when they share them, as seriously as they participate in the formal defense. This method of sending out knowledge also attracts a group of parents to maintain long-term attention to the museum.”
In addition, more and more professional “masters” in the field of museums are also joining the ranks of popular science. Zhang Jinshuo said that the curator of the Beijing Planetarium, the curator of the Chinese Ancient Animal Museum, and the curator of the Beijing Nanhaizi Elk Garden Museum all joined the science popularization speech group of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, hoping to attract people into the museum to embrace science through more integrated online and offline lectures.
The audience walked past an animal photograph in the National Animal Museum. Photographed by Hao Lingyu
Move 3: Focus on refining “Neijia Fist”
According to the data, from 2016 to 2020, the annual number of visitors to Chinese museums increased from 700 million to 1.2 billion, with an average annual increase of 100 million. Among them, the number of minor visitors increased from 220 million to 290 million. The “museum craze” is continuing to rise.
How did the “minority” museum rise? In recent years, more and more specialized museums have sought differential development, and are committed to becoming the cultural card of the city or a certain field, and inheriting the spirit of the city.
In Quanzhou, the world heritage city, the Overseas Traffic History Museum of the city displays ancient sea vessels, religious stone carvings and export porcelain, showing the brilliant achievements of navigation in the Song and Yuan Dynasties; Yangzhou China Grand Canal Museum displays the customs and natural changes on both sides of the canal through the ancient books and documents, paintings, inscriptions and other cultural relics that reflect the theme of the canal.
“Museums should have exhibits that reflect the characteristics of their cities and regions, tell the stories of their regions through exhibits, and work hard on physical exhibits while pursuing digitalization, instead of displaying the same kind of exhibits as in the past. Successful specialized museums can become local cultural ‘business cards’,” said Zhang Jinshuo.
This summer vacation, the National Animal Museum ushered in a relatively significant increase in traffic. Zhang Jinshuo said that people can’t feel all the details of animals through the screen, but also need to go into the museum to experience. “Facing a specimen of a hundred years ago, people can have the feeling of communicating with scientific sages in an instant, which is the charm of the museum.”
Museums that used to be considered “niche” are becoming hard to find. People are calling for more wonderful cultural and cultural creativity to meet the growing spiritual needs.