SHREVEPORT, LA — Art enthusiasts across the globe can now access multi-lingual audio tours of Centenary’s Meadows Museum of Art, the only nationally accredited art museum in north Louisiana. In February, the Meadows opened its first bilingual exhibition, Creole World from the Historic New Orleans Collection, with Spanish translations from Miami’s Frost Museum and Meadows student intern Cecilia Rodriquez, who has also translated the Meadows website. An introduction to the Meadows in six languages is now available on the storytelling platformizi.TRAVEL, an international website offering free city tours and museum audio guides.
The Meadows is the first site in Louisiana to use the izi.TRAVEL audio platform, allowing visitors to access museum audio on their own cell phones. Centenary communication major Meghan Henry is leading the project that will help attract more visitors to the Meadows as well as highlight Centenary’s Museum Management Program for prospective students.
At present, virtual and physical visitors to the Meadows can hear about the museum’s history in English, Danish, Farsi, French, Portuguese, and Spanish, and students are currently producing content in Arabic, Hindi, Nepali, and Urdu. No other museum or cultural site in the United States offers this kind of multi-lingual diversity on izi.TRAVEL. The museum’s general introduction launched last month has already received 96 visitors spanning 16 countries around the globe from Armenia to Venezuela. Visits from other countries are added daily, and all the posted languages are being used. English, Farsi, and Spanish are accessed the most often.
“We first got interested in the U.S. launch of this cultural app because they temporarily offered a free translation service to make new content bilingual,” shared Dr. Lisa Nicoletti and Professor Bruce Allen, co-Directors of the Meadows Museum. “We got to thinking about the many languages our Centenary students speak, and realized we didn’t need that assistance after all. The app developers were so surprised at our diverse content, they contacted us to inquire how we accomplished this feat. Given Centenary’s promotion of multiculturalism and diversity, it’s easy.”
The Meadows’ student language experts include Arash Ataei, Sarah Leal, Elisabeth Nielsen, ArPana NeuPane, Cecilia Rodriguez, Natasha KassabianRosa, Logan Settoon, and Irza Wajid.
Artist talks and exhibition-specific audio will be added periodically throughout the exhibition season at the Meadows. Henry has also been interviewing visiting artists, most recently the nationally famous photographers Jonathan Auch and Richard Sexton. Henry edits the content into short clips that visitors may access in the galleries through the app or by scanning a QR code.
izi.TRAVEL is a popular audio tour platform used by many major European museums that is just beginning to enter the U.S. market. Other institutions featured in izi.TRAVEL tours include the Victoria & Albert Museum and the British Museum in London, the Musée d’Orsay and the Louvre in Paris, and the Anne Frank House and Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.
About the Meadows Museum of Art
The Meadows Museum of Art is located on the campus of Centenary College of Louisiana at 2911 Centenary Boulevard in Shreveport, Louisiana. The Museum is free and open to the public Tuesdays through Fridays from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. and Saturdays from 12-4 p.m. For more information or to schedule fieldtrips, call the Museum at 318.869.5040 or visit www.centenary.edu/meadows.