Are you looking for content ideas to create around your museum or gallery? Or do you just want to while away an evening staring at ravishing art, without ever leaving your couch? Here’s our top pick of museum YouTube channels to explore.
The MoMA (The Museum of Modern Art, New York) YouTube channel is a great example of being fearlessly educational. When you visit the channel you’ll find a great variety of videos, spanning art forms from dance, to film, to photography, painting and installation; in the formats of behind-the-scenes series, lives, 360 experiences, artist profiles, how-to videos and more.
MoMA boldly chooses to create films that are of interest to their widest possible community and promoting them based on content, rather than hoping on people specifically searching for museum or gallery films. With 3 to 6 films a month, this is a highly active art video channel.
The British Museum
“The way I like to think about it is that everyone in the world is someone who has maybe visited The British Museum once in their lives, or potentially, hopefully will one day visit… I like to think of it as this continuous, lifetime relationship that we have with people,” Kate Carter, until recently the British Museum’s Senior Digital Marketing Manager, explains on social media management platform Hootsuite’s podcast Hootcast.
The British Museum’s audience strategy it appears, is not to distinguish between online and on-site. This transpires on the Museum’s YouTube channel, where you see films for art lovers, history buffs, and even food lovers; there are how-to videos, videos that peak behind the scenes at the museum and timely exhibition trailers; you find classic documentaries, videos that cleverly use on-screen text; and even a short in the style of a music video. Have a browse, and let us know your thoughts:
2012 saw the birth of MOCAtv, the The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles’ online video channel and part of YouTube’s then brand new ‘original channels’. The most popular items on the channel are a series of music videos commissioned by MOCAtv and starring artists as famous as Björk or Flea from The Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Then Director of MOCA Jeffrey Deitch was accused of having a “celebrity-driven” programme and YouTube’s ‘original channels’ projects failed. But in terms of establishing lasting online presence… MOCAtv worked! More than 20 videos on MOCAtv have over 100K views, the channel has close to 200K subscribers.
The Wallace Collection
The Wallace Collection in London, which this summer opened a brand new exhibition space tripling its capacity, has been going strong with video for years. Is it the dazzling beauty of objects in founder Sir Richard Wallace’s collection, the investigatory storytelling style or the presence of old and contemporary notables that attracts most viewers to its YouTube channel? In any case, it is worth your watch.
Chocolate Films has worked with The Wallace Collection for several years, and the variety of projects demonstrates their commitment to video. So, we have produced films about conservation, BSL tours, tours by children, exhibition trailers and more. Most recently we had the pleasure to create the exhibition film for ‘Sir Richard Wallace: The Collector’, celebrating 200 years since the birth of Sir Richard Wallace:
Possibly the best thing about the Rijksmuseum’s YouTube channel is it does not take itself too seriously. Some of the most watched videos of this national museum boasting Dutch masters and more include a series about ‘High Society’, complete with over the top music and ambiguous jokes; a time-lapse including the largest explosion of orange dust you might have ever seen; and promotional videos to come and draw at the Rijksmuseum, grasping your attention with animation or mascots.
Then, there’s films about Rembrandt, a lecture with Alain de Botton (34K views!) and behind the scenes documentaries for exhibitions. Browse through the mix, what side of the Amsterdam classic is your favourite?
Online video is a great way to promote your museum or gallery. We have 3 blog posts that can help:
Looking for more inspiration?