By María Yolisma García, Social Media Assistant Account Executive
I recently visited the highly anticipated pop-up exhibit Sweet Tooth Hotel, an immersive exhibit that sends their guests on a sweet trip. The exhibit contained installations by local artists such as Jeremy Biggers, Built by Bender, Jojo Chuang, Chelsea Delzell and Shamsy Roomiani. The carefully curated space includes interactive rooms and perfect backdrops for that double-tap worthy post.
Lately, a wave of pop up galleries has been attracting influencers, aspiring influencers and every-day people looking for that perfect shot for their carefully curated Instagram feeds. These engaging and out-of-the-box exhibits have been making waves in local art scenes by challenging how we consume art. Far gone are the days of the “no pictures please” signs. Instead, these exhibits encourage visitors to grab hold of props and frame the exhibit in the best way they know how.
Though these immersive spaces are becoming popular, it begs the question, how will the way we consume art change? The installations, while made to appreciate and explore the mediums the artists use, seemed to be glanced over for the purpose of being able to pose and find the perfect caption. Much like at concerts and weddings, museum goers looking to ‘gram every moment have caught a lot of flack. People have gone as far as to suggest that they’re ruining museums. In an article by the Washington Post, some museums, like the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, are adapting to the availability (and demand) of photography in their exhibits by suggesting visitors sketch the art instead. But immersive experiences and art pop-ups like The Sweet Tooth Hotel lend themselves exactly to this experience.
While I walked around the exhibit, what caught my eye the most were the materials used and how they were placed. Each room cradled an interesting piece and had hidden nooks that centered the viewer as its subject. The feel of the space was far from a museum, there was a guided tour in the beginning and after that the entire space was our Instagram/social playground. For an hour we could tour and take as many pictures as we could. Each room had a simultaneous photo shoot happening so the time to really appreciate the art was minimal.
Unlike most traditional museums the space was very eclectic. Many “hotel guests” had their phone camera in hand and were ready to take pictures, presumably to share with their social media followers. One platform in particular that has heavily influenced the rise of these galleries is Instagram. According to an article from Forbes, more brands are looking to Instagram to bring attention to their business/products. It states that “[t]hey are now focused on creating entire spaces that consumers will want to share with their own followers,” which is exactly the case with these pop-up exhibits. Influencers take to their social media channels to share more about their experiences at the expense of the brand investing in this type of outreach, and in return see their work flourish. An article by Impact stated that “fans and brand advocates drive the most engagement at 8.0%, while celebrities only drive about 1.6%.” In return to the engagement piece, there is a large influx of traffic to said places whether they are murals, pop-ups or restaurants, the use of making something Instagram worthy really pays off.
If one thing is certain, the demand was very high for people to get a day inside the Sweet Tooth Hotel. Tickets sold out in advance and I saw my friends trying to get their hands on them as well. The high demand and continued marketing of the space through local influencers resulted in foot traffic and even lead to the space extending the exhibit through August.
Overall, the visit really opened up what could be of interactive spaces and the future of bringing digital spaces to life. It was a moment where I could step into highly popular pots in real life. To learn more about the Sweet Tooth Hotel you can visit their site.
Dieste, Inc. (www.dieste.com) is a Dallas- and New York-based company with a mission to pioneer the future of how brands and cultures connect. Through our partnerships and the deployment of proprietary consumer data, algorithms and human cultural intel, combined with insightful creativity, we are able to sync brands with consumer subcultures and create successful outcomes for our clients. Dieste has won multiple Cannes Lions for their work and has been named Ad Age’s “A-list,” “Agency to Watch” and “Multicultural Agency of the Year” numerous times. Dieste is part of Omnicom’s (NYSE: OMC) DAS Global network.
María is a Mexican-American, stationery enthusiast, and music junkie. She is an amateur calligrapher and extreme mini-van driver.