On the Map: The curation of 3D cartographies at ACMI

The question addressed:

Can the notion of spatial narratives and deep mapping be used to develop a more complex and non-binarial narrative structure for the representation of culture in international exhibitions produced at ACMI?

The aim:

The proposed research paper aims to demonstrate that spatial narratives and deep mapping can be used to develop more complex postcolonial organisational principles that present cultural production within a non-linear network.

The objective:

  • To used spatial narration and deep mapping to develop narrative structures that are akin to networks.
  • To add to the data research undertaken for the ACMI X project through the examination and comparison of international blockbusters with specific attention paid to narration.
  • To develop narrative approaches that speak to these statistics with the potential to implement them and strengthen future soft-power museum models.

Theoretical Framework:

  • Jean Baudrillard’s notion of the map as a tool to frame and as an entrance point into the historicism that ACMI performs as it proceeds/ maps out the discourse.
  • Giulio Camillo’s “Theatre of Memory” and Frances A. Yates interpretation in “Art and Memory.”
  • Joseph Nye’s notion of soft-power and Gail Dexter and Ngaire Blankenberg’s expansion in “Cities, Museums and Soft Power” for the museological field.
  • David J. Bodenhamer’s theorisation of deep mapping and spatial narration

Methodological Approach:

  • Collection and analysis of data statistics for the ACMI X project
  • Case studies of relevant blockbuster exhibitions and a comparison of attendance figures and costs with ACMI exhibitions such as Game Masters to establish the most successful and common characteristics.
  • Investigation of historicism of the Moving Image, institutions, and literature on international exhibition models and narration.


Great start, Eliza! The strongest component of your proposal is your targeted and well-thought theoretical framework which will inform the development of your specific research question and approaches. Also I love your focus on developing meaningful narrative around your case studies! I think this is where your research should begin and will eventually culminate once you collect statistical data!