Pushing the Technology Boundaries of ArtPrize

The technology within ArtPrize is constantly evolving and changing as the competition itself becomes bigger and better. From a limited website in the beginning, all the way to this year’s app that allows you to plan your walking route of Grand Rapids, ArtPrize technicians have come a long way. When thinking of the route ArtPrize will take in the future, the opportunities are endless. Whether it be the art itself, how people interact with the art, or how they vote for the art, technology can be infused within every aspect of ArtPrize even more-so than it already is.

Each year ArtPrize has stepped up their game in regards to technology and its involvement in the competition. ArtPrize began with only texting to vote methods and has evolved exponentionally and will only continue to do so. Visitors today can download the app and gain features including art discovery, making and sharing lists, registering and voting, navigation, news and events, and more (Davis, 2015).

But as each ArtPrize passes, the technology used within it needs to stay up to date with the people that are using it. When preparing for ArtPrize Eight, there are several areas that can be improved upon and places where they can integrate more technology into the system in order to increase the visitor satisfaction.

By installing an ArtPrize wifi throughout the areas of Grand Rapids, the voter participation as well as viewer satisfaction would increase because they wouldn’t be using their own personal data to submit voting for the art pieces. The mobile app is the preferred method of voting (ArtPrize, 2014) and when the voter doesn’t have access to internet, no voting occurs.

In addition to widespread wifi, an easier system to vote could be implemented that incorporates a system much like a QR code where the voters can just click on the image in the camera and a vote is submitted. A study done by the American Sociological Review shows that each step in a process produces a group of individuals dropping out (Klandermans, 1987). By reducing the amount of steps it takes to enter a vote, the amount of voters would increase.

Voters Sign
Photo Credit: Rachel Berzins

In addition to providing wifi throughout the city, the artists themselves can incorporate a new aspect into their pieces that could increase their awareness as well as push them to the top of the leaderboard. By creating a hashtag, as some artists are doing now, or having a piece that links up to a smartphone and has additional features are ways that the artist can interact with the viewers without having to physically be there all the time. Guests are already taking pictures of the art pieces and sharing them with others, but the interaction would increase if there were additional features like behind the scenes of the art work or where to buy the piece or games that were associated with the artwork.

What Lifts You Image
Photo Credit: Rachel Berzins

With technology’s ever-changing and growing capabilities, companies and businesses and festivals and competitions must constantly keep up to entice users to use their products, services, or go to their events. Whether it be adding wifi, streamlining the voting process, or incorporating interactive art pieces, ArtPrize has to keep pushing the limits in regards to technology to keep the voters coming back year after year.

News Instagram Poster
Photo Credit: Rachel Berzins


ArtPrize. (2014). ArtPrize Media Kit 2009. Retrieved from http://www.artprize.org/about/press/artprize-media-kits-reports

Davis, D. (2015, September 14). ArtPrize Seven Mobile App Tutorial. ArtPrize. Retrieved from https://www.artprize.org/blog/artprize-seven-mobile-app-tutorial

Klandermans, B., & Oegema, D. (1987, August). Potentials, Networks, Motivations, and Barriers: Steps Towards Participation in Social Movements. American Sociological Review, 52, 519-531. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/2095297


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