Chicago Custom Software Development Breakthrough Technologies

Chicago Loop Alliance

PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT - Website and Integrated Mobile App

The Challenge

A multi-venue competition described as “revolutionizing the way Chicago looks at art,” Art Loop Open transformed 10 venues throughout Chicago’s Loop into public exhibits.

Developed through the non-profit Chicago Loop Alliance, this innovative, edgy and highly visible mixed-media exhibition presented works by local artists – part of the CLA’s mission to develop, support and promote artistic, cultural and public events that benefit the Chicago Loop area.

Integral to the Art Loop Open plan was to make the exhibition interactive so that visitors easily could learn more about each artwork and artist, view an event map, and vote on their favorite works. Competition winners stood to gain tens of thousands of dollars.

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Described as “revolutionizing the way Chicago looks at art,” Art Loop Open – a multi-venue competition – transformed 10 venues throughout Chicago’s Loop into exhibit sites. BT developed a website and application that allowed exhibition visitors to interact with artworks via mobile devices, learn details about them, and vote for their favorites.

The Solution

Needed, then, was an engaging site that not only informed the public of the event, but also would double as a voting platform.

“It was a pretty exciting, innovative, experiential project at the intersection of the physical, the mobile, and the Web, all tied together in one platform,” says Doug Wilson, BT Managing Partner.  “What Art Loop Open wanted was an interesting, low-cost solution that would allow visitors to use their phones to interact with the art, then come back to the website for a wealth of valuable content.”

BT drew on the extensibility of open-source Drupal Content Management System to build an intuitive website that integrated mobile technology.  The BT solution empowered the public to vote by scanning a Microsoft Tag via a QR code displayed on signage at each exhibit.  The project also was cost-effective – open-source software requires no licensing fees – and was built on a reliable, scalable platform with the potential to accommodate a hundred artists, hundreds of artworks, and potentially tens of thousands of users.

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