Keeper of Paintings Nominated for an Auggie

Auggir Awards logo (AR Awards)

Just a couple of weeks after its launch at The National Gallery in London, The Keeper of Paintings and the Palette of Perception has received its first award nomination. The immersive game created for, and in collaboration with, 7-11 year olds and their families is up for ‘Best in Location-Based Entertainment’ at the prestigious Auggies, run by AWE.

Voting is open to the public until May 5th, and you can register here to vote for The Keeper of Paintings and any of the other incredible immersive experiences across 15 categories.

Find out more about The Keeper of Paintings here, and book your ticket to play the game for free at The National Gallery here!

Children and Augmented Reality Characters in the National Gallery

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The Keeper of Paintings launches at The National Gallery

Children and Augmented Reality Characters in the National Gallery

The Keeper of Paintings and the Palette of Perception, the free mobile-based immersive game set at The National Gallery in London, has officially launched to the public.

The AR app is the first of its kind launched by The National Gallery, and has been created with the help of over 80 children.

Having been selected as winners of the StoryFutures China Storylab commission in early 2021, the launch is the culmination of a year-long project by the Arcade team, working in collaboration with The National Gallery, StoryFutures and a wider partnership group including Royal Holloway University of London and Brunel University of London.

WELCOME TO THE WORLD OF THE KEEPERS

This child-led experience takes place in the National Gallery, London but also, through augmented reality, a wider imagined world of Keepers where a group of magical beings who help care for some of our world’s most precious objects. 

Young Gallery visitors are asked to help guide a fictitious Keeper of Paintings to find a lost ‘Palette of Perception’ – a magical object with special gems that gives them ‘powers’ – to engage with the paintings digitally. As they move through the Gallery responding to the app’s story, a new digital world is revealed where visitors can solve puzzles, find hidden secrets, and collect the gems connected to the paintings.

The app is designed to be fun and rewarding for children and their families, but its primary goal is to foster interest and engagement with the Gallery’s masterpieces. The challenges within the game all require the kids to explore the art with their eyes, and include regular breaks in which they are prompted to put the phones away and chat about the paintings with their friends and family.

The cleverness of the app design is that the rewards only come via close study [of the paintings] with the naked eye.

The Sunday Times
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Jon Meggitt, Co‐Founder of Arcade and lead developer, says: ‘We were absolutely thrilled to win the opportunity to develop this experience in partnership with this special and talented group, but working alongside StoryFutures, the National Gallery, the wonderful kids of the Children’s Advisory Group and all the other partners has exceeded every one of our expectations.’

Lawrence Chiles, Head of Digital at the National Gallery, London, says: ‘It’s fantastic that we are able to launch our first dedicated app for children that creates a new perspective on the paintings at the National Gallery. Arcade, the children and all the partners involved have created something really magical.’

Professor James Bennett, Director of StoryFutures at Royal Holloway, University of London, says: ‘The National Gallery and Arcade have taken on a massive innovation challenge. This project shows what can be achieved in linking great storytelling with innovative new immersive technologies. Perhaps the most exciting thing is that the story of The Keeper of Paintings has only just begun.’

DOWNLOAD TODAY

The Keeper of Paintings and the Palette of Perception is designed for 7-11 year olds, will run at The National Gallery for at least 12 months, and can be downloaded for free on the Apple and Google stores now.

To plan your visit to The National Gallery, please visit www.nationalgallery.org.uk/keeper

TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THE KEEPER OF PAINTINGS OR TO TALK TO THE TEAM, GET IN TOUCH

Testers Wanted! Keeper of Paintings goes into Beta at the National Gallery

The Keeper of Paintings and the Palette of Perception, the new immersive game set at The National Gallery in London, is being Beta-tested by children and their families throughout the half-term week, February 12th-20th.

This is the last major milestone before the full public launch of the experience at Easter, and is the result of nearly a year of development by the Arcade team, working in collaboration with The National Gallery, StoryFutures and a wider partnership group including Royal Holloway University of London, Brunel University of London and Foremost.

HOW YOU CAN GET INVOLVED

If you are a parent or carer of 7-11 year old children and would enjoy spending an hour or so having fun playing together in the iconic surrounds of The National Gallery, click the image or link to sign up!

ABOUT THE KEEPER OF PAINTINGS

Step into a hidden world of art and magic at The National Gallery. Have you got what it takes to help the Keeper of Paintings and find the lost Palette of Perception? The Keeper of Paintings and the Palette of Perception is a free mobile-based immersive adventure that encourages children to explore one of the world’s most iconic galleries and learn about some of the greatest artworks ever created. The child-led experience takes place in the physical world of the National Gallery but also – through the magic of augmented reality – in the fictional storyworld of the Keepers, a mysterious group of magical beings who watch over some of our world’s most precious treasures. Suitable for ages 7-11. Families participating in the Beta testing will help to shape the final experience due to launch at Easter, and will receive an Amazon voucher in thanks for their time.

Arcade awarded Immersive Storytelling Fellowship by StoryFutures and UK Parliament

We are thrilled to announce that Arcade is one of five industry-leading SMEs to be awarded an Immersive Storytelling Fellowship by StoryFutures, the Creative Cluster that creates and helps fund R&D projects with creative businesses in the Gateway Cluster and Greater London.

Jon Meggitt, Arcade CEO, takes on the role of Fellow on a hugely exciting project that sees Arcade partner with Royal Holloway academics and UK Parliament to immerse audiences in the rich historical and contemporary narratives that make Parliament so important to today’s society.

The overarching goal is to make Parliament feel relevant to audiences of all kinds, creating meaningful connections with its history and ongoing activity. To do so, we will create a ‘Spatial Story Platform’, a new way of using immersive technology to serve contextual, multi-vocal stories that are tailored to the user, whoever they are and whatever their interests.

Jon Meggitt
Jon Meggitt, Arcade CEO & Immersive Storytelling Fellow

Using the majestic Westminster Hall as our physical canvas, we will create a visitor experience that offers a personalised interactive tour through hundreds of the historical and contemporary stories that have defined the UK Parliament. Many will include multiple perspectives on the same narrative and invite the user to make up their own mind about which side of the debate they would have supported.

Artist's impression of the Westminster Hall experience

In addition to physical visitors to Parliament, it is important for the experience to foster this stronger sense of connection amongst those who are unable to reach Parliament for physical, economic or social reasons so we will also create a remote experience, built around a digital twin of Westminster Hall. Users can virtually place the hall in the physical space around them, before ‘stepping inside’ and enjoying a similar experience to physical visitors, but from anywhere in the country or, indeed, the world.

“It is a huge honour to accept this Fellowship,” said Jon, “and we are thrilled to be working with such prestigious institutions as StoryFutures, Royal Holloway and, in particular, UK Parliament. The challenge from an R&D perspective is pretty huge, but that’s what make this so exciting. It’s an opportunity to try and do something completely new, with permission to fail. But of course we’ll be doing everything we can to succeed!”

Read the full StoryFutures press release here.