Museum Etiquette: Unwritten Rules When Visiting a Museum or Exhibit
The primary purpose of museums is to preserve art and cultural and historical artifacts. The doors of museums have only been opened to give these items the honor and respect they deserve, as well as encouraging people to appreciate art, find inspiration, and learn. That said, entering a museum is nothing like entering a shopping mall or a fashion store where you can thoughtlessly wander around without being conscious of how you affect your surroundings.
There are unwritten rules that not all museum visitors are conscious about. Here are some of the most important etiquette rules in a museum, which also apply to art exhibits.
The best way to appreciate art and cultural and historical items is to do so in silence or minimal noise. When you make noise, talk over the phone, or murmur with your friends, not only are you disrupting the reflective solitude in the place but are you also messing up the experience of other people in the museum.
Keep your distance.
Artworks and artifacts are delicate objects. When you crowd into a piece of art, you are putting it at risk, not to mention blocking it out of view of other people who also want to experience it.
If you have to take a call, step out.
When you take a call inside the museum, it upsets the atmosphere of the place and is distracting to other people. If it is urgent, excuse yourself and go outside before answering the call. Otherwise, switch your phone to silent mode and text instead.
Take enough photos with enough courtesy.
This is more of ensuring you get the best experience in the museum or art exhibit. If you need to take photos, take only enough and, despite any strong urge, avoid taking selfies. Inside the museum, the artworks are the most precious thing. Using them as mere backgrounds for your selfies is like underestimating their value.
Even though the artwork or artifact is displayed in the open, that doesn’t mean that you can touch it. Just like keeping your distance, keeping your hands off the items keeps them away from harm.
Don’t bring food and drinks around.
The museum is not a cinema where you need some popcorn and cola to enjoy the spectacle. Even if you’re careful, food and drinks might contaminate the artworks.
Also read: SNEAK PEEK: Art Fair Philippines 2018