Skip to content

Curating Secrets Can…Exploring the Potential for Interactive and Emotional Exhibits

Master’s Project by Rebecca Fronczak (2016)

This thesis project was a contemporary art exhibit titled Secrets Can… conducted through the Emerging Curator Initiative, a partnership between the University of Washington Museology Graduate Program and the Kirkland Arts Center. The goal of this project was to design and implement an exhibit that successfully explored the ways in which cultural institutions can facilitate meaningful dialogue through the thoughtful development of a space for dialogue and interaction, thus following the trend that museological work is no longer “about something” but instead “for someone.” The concept of the exhibit focused on the ways in which secrets can impact the human experience. The exhibit consisted of thirty-three pieces from sixteen artists, which included paintings, photographs, prints, and ceramics. The exhibit featured six levels of interaction that included sharing secrets, reading books and labels, and social media. The interactive and educational components of the exhibit were evaluated through a visitor survey, data analytics, and a discussion of the secrets shared by visitors. Over four hundred visitors saw the exhibit, and eighty-five secrets were collected through one interactive. Response to the exhibit was overwhelmingly positive and this paper demonstrates the need for cultural institutions to produce interactive programming that speaks to the emotional development of individuals.


Keywords: project, exhibitions, emotions, emerging curator, Class of 2016


Fronczak,R. (2016). Curating Secrets Can…: Exploring the Potential for Interactive and Emotional Exhibits. Unpublished master’s project, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.