Culture Geek usually takes place in London. We’ll also be running this years online conference in the UK timezone, if you can’t attend live, you’ll have access to films of the talks after the event.


Rijksmuseum from home

Try to spend lockdown without music, art and movies, it’s impossible! Culture and creativity is becoming more and more important especially during a pandemic. We believe that it is our job to bring our collection closer to a broad audience so that everyone, no matter where you are, can enjoy the beauty of it. During the lockdown the Rijksmuseum launched 10 ways to visit the museum without leaving home. Some highlights of this campaign include a new online platform Masterpiece Up Close that brings Rembrandt’s The NightWatch and Vermeer’s The Milkmaid to every living room in the world. The platform is an interactive experience, allowing visitors to navigate through the gallery at their own leisure from the comfort of their homes. Another example is #Rijksmuseumfromhome, curators share short videos from home with stories about their favourite works of art. All the videos are posted to Rijksmuseum social media channels.

Nanet Beumer



Making 'niche' art unmissable

In a crowded social media space, how do you present supposedly niche and heritage art forms, in a way that brings them to life, compels engagement, changes perceptions and – ultimately – supports ticket sales?

In this session, Chris will explore how the ROH have repositioned opera and ballet for millennials and generation-Z in ways that appreciate and tackle the preconceptions newcomers have of the art forms, and in the process created one of the sector’s most engaged-with YouTube channels. He’ll also give key takeaways that any organisation, regardless of size, can put into action.

Chris Shipman

Royal Opera House


Museum reinvented: How Naturalis adapted to the new normal

A deep dive into how Naturalis enabled digital transformation to adapt to the new normal with the Close platform and fulfil customer experience in a new way. Corine, Head of Communications at Naturalis Biodiversity Center will share insights together with Kiliaan Toorenaar, CEO and Founder of Close, on the reopening of Naturalis, complying to measures during the pandemic and gaining trust of visitors short-term. As well as looking ahead on their long-term strategy to connect to visitors in new and meaningful ways, making visitors trusty fans.

Corine van Impelen & Kiliaan Toorenaar

Naturalis Biodiversity Center & Close



Take a break, stretch your legs


Embracing Digital Disruption, TikTok and Charging 500 VR Headsets

In Autumn 2019 over 4000 audience members experienced virtual reality as part of a live theatre production of Frankenstein by National Youth Theatre at the Southwark Playhouse. The majority of the audience paid, were school kids and said they wanted to come back for more, but was all that headset charging really worth it? Head of Communications and Digital at NYT Joe Duggan shares how and why they did it and how National Youth Theatre have pivoted to a digital-first approach during lockdown with partners including TikTok.

Joe Duggan

National Youth Theatre


Making Theatre in the Virtual using pre-visualisation and generative tools

With the correct use of pre-visualisation, it shouldn’t be possible to create a bad production. Design teams can work collaboratively through a digital version of a production to refine it before it ever goes on stage. James Simpson has been pioneering new XR solutions to pre-visualise theatre production design, working with some of the most innovative companies in this space, including the RSC, the ROH and Magic Leap.

His developments in pre-visualisation have also paved the way for new tools to develop XR location based experiences more affordably using well developed technical theatre tricks and magic!

James Simpson

Copper Candle


The Shed (NYC)

The Shed was just under a year old when Covid-19 forced cultural institutions to explore digital platforms as an alternative to maintaining meaningful connections with visitors.

While these vehicles offer new life and unprecedented access, the institution also recognizes the truth that for some, to simply make programming available by way of digital is not enough. A “radically welcoming” approach is critical.

With society in isolation and civil unrest and inequities abound, the arts are needed now more than ever to remind people they are not alone and that we can still dream and engage our imaginations in building a better world for tomorrow.

Join, Dupe Ajayi, Intersectional Marketing Strategist; Lily Wan, Digital Content Producer and Ezra Wiesner, Chief Technology Officer for this discussion on digital’s position in creating connections.

Dupé Ajayi

The Shed



Check your emails, stretch your legs and get re-caffinated


The story is more important than the pixel

Lockdown has seen a boom in the creative uses of video game spaces. Off the shelf video games are now being used for socialising, play, learning, art tours, music venues and so much more! Video games have learnt to give creative powers back to the players.

Minecraft is the perfect example of a game platform becoming more than a survive the night and fight the dragon adventure. In this talk, Adam will examine some of my Minecraft projects from Shetland to Lilliput, esports to homeschooling, museums to cancer care. He will also take a look at the tension between funders expectations and the players perspective, and why stories are at the heart of these pixel landscapes.

Finally, he’ll want to look at the range of easy to access platforms and why they are so popular from Minecraft and Roblox to the sophistication of PlayStation’s Dreams and offer a glimpse into the potential of these platforms.

Adam Clarke



Digital Twins in Museums

There is always a new and emerging frontier in technology. We’ve been talking about Internet of Things (ioT) for a number of years but haven’t yet settled on how it applies in Museums. This session will explore “digital twins” technology, leveraging iOT, one of the newer sets of technologies. We’ll discuss what it is, unique applications for Museum spaces, examples of applications, where it’s heading and what it takes to leverage. Everything from the laying out and development of an exhibition, to managing physical environments of collections storage, exploring collection artifacts, supporting research and more.

Catherine Devine


'I like the way that Culture Geek brings together people from across the cultural sector, rather than just attracting people from one art form.'
Simon Parsons