Cuseum’s 2018 Year in Review

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It has been a spectacular year for Cuseum and there is a ton to be excited about heading into the new year. 2018 was full of growth, unforgettable happenings, and new additions to the Cuseum family. We’ve never been more excited about what’s been happening in the world of museums, public attractions, and cultural nonprofits. Thank you for being a part of this journey!

As we turn the page to 2019, please join us in looking back at some highlights.


In the first month of the new year, we launched new projects for the iconic San Francisco Conservatory of Flowers and Nasher Sculpture Center.

Cuseum presented at AR in Action at MIT Media Lab and was also featured in Museums + Heritage Advisor about providing audiences with “new ways to see the cultural world.”


We launched a mobile guide for Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art and digital membership for San Francisco Parks Alliance to name just a few.

To fuel creative inspiration for the months to follow, the Cuseum team trekked down to Providence, Rhode Island for a quarterly offsite retreat.


March was packed with digital membership launches including Newfields, MCA Denver, Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, and many more around the country.

Our CEO shared his excitement and perspective that “Museums are the best place to find innovation in AR” in a widely-shared article in VentureBeat, one of the world’s leading tech sites. We also took to the stage at REMIX Summit in New York City to talk about experience design in museums.

Extra! Extra! Read all about it! 📰March also marked an explosion of Cuseum press coverage with feature stories in Time Magazine, Fast Company, Engadget, Artnet, Boston Globe, VICE, CBS, and 100+ news outlets more, for one of the most written about AR and museum technology projects of 2018!


Members of the Cuseum team globe-trotted to speak and participate at various conferences including CultureSummit in Abu Dhabi 🇦🇪, Museums and the Web in Vancouver 🇨🇦, and International Museum Membership Conference in Amsterdam 🇳🇱.

The press frenzy continued with a heavy-hitting story in WIRED titled “Augmented Reality is Transforming Museums,” as well as coverage in PSFK and Boston Magazine. The engineering software giant Autodesk spotlighted our AR collaboration with the Perez Art Museum Miami.


Year after year we have an incredible time at the American Alliance of Museums (AAM) Annual Meeting. We see it as invaluable forum for learning, exchanging best practices, and catching up with our community. This year in Phoenix, Cuseum CEO’s Brendan Ciecko spoke about our work with the Perez Art Museum Miami in a case study session.

We also launched a new mobile app for one of the top modern art museums in the world, SFMOMA, as well as Historic Charleston Foundation in conjunction with ours friends at Museum Hack. The month of May also saw digital membership rollouts for Perot Museum of Nature and Science, Frist Art Museum, and Cade Museum.

On the AR front, we helped bring one of Gustav Klimt’s famous paintings to life in an AR collaboration with Vienna’s Museum of Applied Arts (MAK) and Pioneers Festival. This project was highlighted in VRFocus, FAD Magazine, and Communication of the ACM. Cuseum was also featured in IoT Playbook about iBeacon technology in museums.


With no sign of slowing down, we launched a critically-acclaimed app for the White House, in partnership with Amazon Web Services. This digital initiative garnered significant press coverage in CNN, ABC, GeekWire, Boston Business Journal, NPR, and a shout-out from First Lady, Melania Trump 🇺🇸.

We also launched a mobile guide for Henry Ford’s estate, Fair Lane, and for Royal Tyrrell Museum and Winnipeg Art Gallery up in Canada. We rolled out digital membership cards for one of America’s most visited zoos, Detroit Zoo.

With microphone in hand, Cuseum’s CEO spoke about AR’s impact on museums and culture at the world’s largest AR/VR event, Augmented World Expo in Santa Clara, and covered how startups are fueling innovation in the public and nonprofit sectors at AWS Public Sector Summit in Washington DC.

We were also excited to find out that the team we’re a part of, led by Mikyoung Kim Design, was selected as a finalist 🏆 for the Detroit Institute of Arts and Midtown Detroit Cultural District design competition.


Not 1️⃣, not 2️⃣, but 3️⃣... we received our 3rd patent!

We also celebrated launches for Montalvo Arts Center, Mingei International Museum, Adventure Science Center, and many others.

Cuseum spoke to a standing-room-only crowd at Verizon’s Alley about our various explorations in AR and mobile technology. Back in Boston, we co-hosted a Public Arts & Innovation Economy Walking Tour with The Boston Foundation.


Cuseum was selected as one of the world’s most innovative travel/tourism startups 🏆by the World Tourism Forum Lucerne. We launched mobile apps for South Florida Museum, Emerald Necklace Conservancy, Ulrich Museum of Art, and more. We rolled out digital membership for Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Commonwealth Club, the oldest and largest public affairs forum in the United States.

To further understand the impact of AR on museum-goers, we embarked on a major research initiative and published the AR Visitor Experience Survey & Infographic which was shared and cited by Fast Company, Computerworld, and VRFocus.


In September, we saw launches for Clyfford Still Museum, Sacramento Zoo, and Arizona Christian University’s Alumni Association.

We were named one of the Boston’s top companies by BostInno in their annual “50 on Fire” 🏆awards. We also received coverage from TechRadar in an article about how the heritage business is embracing mobile tech.

No stranger to jet lag, Cuseum’s CEO was invited to Malaysia 🇲🇾 to present Cuseum at the World Tourism Forum Lucerne Startup Innovation Bootcamp.


Our very own Dan Sullivan represented Cuseum in a presentation for the ArtTech 🏆Prize in Geneva 🇨🇭 in recognition of Cuseum’s contributions to the digital advancement in the art and culture sector.

AAM shared our CEO’s perspective on the intersection of museums and startups mindsets in the “Attack of the 100-Year Old Startup.” 🚀

We launched new apps for Rutgers University Geology Museum, as well as two in the Boston-area for Boston’s Seaport and Now + There to guide visitors around the city’s new public art. Digital memberships went live for Morikami Museum and Southern Illinois University’s Alumni Association.

Cuseum’s Sydney Stento gave a talk about how digital is transforming the museum experience at Museum East in Nova Scotia 🇨🇦. Back stateside, we spoke about accessibility in the arts at MIT Hacking Arts. We were happy to host a group of graduate students from Johns Hopkins University’s Museum Studies program at our Boston office for the deep dive lecture on the topic of museum technology.


Memberships went digital for Oklahoma City Museum of Art, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, and Southern Oregon University’s Alumni Association. We helped the Gibbes Museum of Art check an item off their strategic bucket list with the launch of a new mobile app.

Cuseum spoke at MuseumNext in New York City and Museum Computer Network in Denver, and NEMA’s Annual Conference in Stanford. We were also featured in Raconteur’s “The Future of Art” 2018 report for which we were thankful.


We were thrilled for our partner, the Perez Art Museum Miami on the special release of their latest Augmented Reality-based art installation at UNTITLED, which the New York Post called a “don’t miss” experience during Miami Art Week. It was truly amazing to see what that partnership evolved into!

We shared our point of view with National Trust for Historic Preservation in a piece titled “Using Technology to Enhance Historical Narratives,” and additionally received coverage in Artnet News and the Times of India, the largest English-language daily newspaper in the world.

More than anything, we laid down the foundation for many exciting initiatives to come in 2019.

It’s been an amazing year and we are looking forward to an even bigger and brighter one to come. We can’t wait to see what new adventures, collaborations, and achievements 2019 has in store.

Our top resolution for the upcoming year? To exponentially grow our eclectic family of museums, organizations, and partners. We hope you’ll join us! Happy New Year! 🎉

Happy New Year!
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