Title:One-to-One: Supporting Artist-Visitor Dialogue
Authors:Silvia Filippini Fantoni, Kirstie Beaven, Ben Rubinstein
Publication:MW2011: Museums and the Web 2011

Artists have been using the internet since the early days of the Web, but no-one has done anything quite like Chinese artist Ai Weiwei who uses technology, Twitter in particular, as a way of sharing his artistic and political life with people all around the world. 

Alongside his Unilever Series installation at Tate Modern, which opens October 12th 2010, the Turbine Hall has also been transformed into a hub of global conversation. Here, next to the artwork, a series of booths have been installed where the artist asks visitors to record a video, either asking him a question or answering one of his questions. These videos are then published on a dedicated website for all to see and to also engage those not able to visit in person. Each week until May 2011, Ai Weiwei is selecting videos to respond to and posting his video or text responses on the website, thus creating a joyful, worldwide dialogue between the artist and the visitors. People outside the museum can also join in the conversation via Twitter. Ai Weiwei will be monitoring and replying to postings with the hashtag #tateaww.

In this paper, we will describe in detail the principles, philosophy and technology behind the One-to-One with the artist project. Recent advances in the technology made it possible to realize the project's ambitions in under eight weeks. We will also report on the effective usage of the kiosks and website by both the visitors and the artist, the challenges encountered in the development and implementation process, as well as the results of the evaluation that will be carried out in the upcoming months.