Serge Chaumier & François Mairesse, "La médiation culturelle" (2013)
"If school remains a considerable access road to the culture, the main "road" is, and remains, the family circle." This is how Serge Chaumier and François Mairesse, in the following book: "The cultural mediation" (2013), present the importance of family in the relationship young visitors maintain with the museum institution.
Family visit at the Museum of fine arts
The first facilitating figures children meet are members of their family (parents, grand-parents, brothers or sisters, uncles or aunts) or close friends, before they are in contact with institutional facilitators.
According to a CREDOC study from 2012, the fine arts museums are the ones having attracted most visitors in France, with 23 % of the population who went to this type of museum during the year 2012.
According to this study again, the museums of fine arts would tend to be a cultural outing especially for and between adults rather than an outing between members of the same family (the family visit would rather be kept for the museums of natural history, of sciences, techniques and industry).
In fact, a 2011 study realized in the national French museums shows the same results when it indicates that family visits in museums of fine arts represent only between 7 and 11 % of global visits.
The key issues of using digital devices will be to give all their importance to visitors coming as a family so that the expectations and ideals are granted for this public in particular too, and completed by other possibilities: eLearning, exchanges within the family, gaming.
In a transmediatic approach, these digital devices fit into a global thinking and into a wider outfit of activities and supports, dedicated to families: workshops, specific visits, etc.
The goal is to ensure a complementarity between various visiting times and activities taking place during the visit.
Several studies show the role of initiators held by children regarding the relationship to digital devices. Those will arouse more often the interest of family groups and have a power of retention more important than the so-called “static” devices.
The global idea is that digital devices proposed by the museum can favor the family interaction, and facilitate the adults’ parental role by putting them in confidence – offering them the possibility to apprehend more easily and quickly the museum’s contents.