About

Shared Spaces is a three-year project of the University of Saskatchewan Art Galleries & Collection exploring how Augmented Reality (AR) can create opportunities for connection through art, both by making art accessible anywhere through approaches such as digital 3D sculptures and by providing additional content that is often personal in nature. Employing user-centred and service design methodologies, we have been learning from partner communities across Saskatchewan their needs and desires related to the arts and are leveraging our relationships with multiple departments at the University of Saskatchewan to design a new digital service for the arts in response, with acute focus on the presence of Indigenous and other often excluded voices. We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts.

Project development and process

Shared Spaces developed out of an organizational shift within the USask Art Galleries, called Galleries Reimagined, which saw a change in focus from presenting art within the discrete physical spaces of the galleries to asking how the Galleries as an organization can better support and be a member of the Saskatchewan arts community. As one of the first initiatives under Galleries Reimagined, then-Interim Director Jeremy Morgan formed a Project Team bringing together digital experts from multiple USask departments to develop an application for the Canada Council for the Arts' Digital Strategy Fund, with the intention of supporting Saskatchewan artists, arts organizations, and their current and potential audiences. Rather than presupposing their needs, the application was built around first engaging with these groups to learn directly from them; what we heard were challenges in communication and connection as well as a sense of isolation that can occur due to the vast distances of our province. We formed a proposal to address these challenges by developing new digital technologies and focused on collaboration with our partner communities through user-centred and service design methodologies.

Our application to the Digital Strategy Fund was successful and the USask Galleries were awarded $482,150 to develop a digital service for the arts. We are currently in the second of our three project phases, developing the Shared Spaces service, which includes an app for viewing artwork in Augmented Reality:

PHASE ONE (JUNE - DEC 2019): Research
PHASE TWO (JAN 2020 - DEC 2021): Development
PHASE THREE (JAN TO JUNE 2022): Dissemination


Website

This website provides a digital process book for Shared Spaces. It is intended to serve as both an archive, chronicling and sharing some of the knowledge we have gained consulting with artists and audience across the province, and as a resource describing our design process, with the intention that this can contribute to greater capacity for design practice within Saskatchewan. The sections of our website describe our design methodology, the user research we have conducted employing this methodology, and the development process we have undertaken in response. Our Nuit Blanche Eve section documents the first public event for Shared Spaces while also providing links and instructions to download a test version of the app we are building to share art through augmented reality. Finally, we are developing a guide for IP and copyright to support artists when sharing their work digitally. 


Project Teams

Shared Spaces is led by our Digital Design Team, which consists of USask professors from across multiple departments, and is guided by our Project Advisory Committee, which includes both artists and digital experts at USask and from our Saskatchewan community:

DIGITAL DESIGN TEAM

PROJECT ADVISORY COMMITTEE

  • Andrei Feheregyhazi
  • Paula MacDowell
  • Janelle Pewapsconias
  • Alex Rogalski
  • Kevin Wesaquate

Our research and development is carried out by multiple teams involving USask students and recent graduates and is led by our Project Manager, Lauren Warrington. Our teams include:

USER ENGAGEMENT TEAM

  • Dorothy Chung
  • Fatemeh Ebrahimnejadnamini
  • Athanasia Perdikaris
  • Caila Robson-Kullman
  • Emilie Neudorf

DEVELOPMENT TEAM

  • Febi Chajadi
  • Brandon Piller
  • Alyanna Rabanal

3D MODELING TEAM

  • EJ Acuna
  • Logan Barr