category: Exhibition and Collection Extension
In July 2017, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) published Soundtracks, its first online exhibition catalogue. Soundtracks also represents the museum’s first digital publication since the launch of its rebranded and redesigned website in 2015, and the opening of its new building in the spring of 2016. SFMOMA has a rich history in digital publishing—from its early forays into interpretive multimedia to Open Space, the museum’s interdisciplinary online magazine and community publishing platform, to the scholarly, collection-focused Rauschenberg Research Project (RRP). Launched in 2013, the RRP was born out of the Getty Foundation’s Online Scholarly Catalog Initiative (OSCI) and continued SFMOMA’s leading-edge efforts in making critical, interpretive, and scholarly content available online. Using the findings from the OSCI project as a point of departure, the Soundtracks digital publication exemplifies SFMOMA’s approach to the next generation of museum digital publications.
Soundtracks was designed and developed with an integrated framework that is both scalable and sustainable, leveraging both the website’s existing user experience design and development tools to create a new digital publication template. This template expands on the site’s design language while introducing markers that define the publication’s boundaries to instill reader confidence and scholarly authority. Soundtracks also represents groundbreaking strategies for presenting time-based art in an online publication model, including innovative approaches to documenting sound-based art for publication using newly available technologies, such as 360 video.