Tyama: A deeper sense of knowing

Immersive experiences are proving to be incredibly popular with audiences. 600,000 people visited The Lume in Melbourne to experience large scale projections of the works of Van Gogh. How do cultural institutions respond to this new trend? Museums Victoria decided that the creation of immersive experience was going to be an important part of future audience engagement and education and that it was going to produce its first major project in this space. Crucial to the venture was the desire to produce this in-house (with collaborators) in a replicable format that could provide a template for future experiences. They also wanted to base the content on their own stories and collections to create original experiences.

Tyama is an interactive and immersive experience developed by Museums Victoria and S1T2 (which stands for Story 1st, Technology 2nd) for Melbourne Museum.

Visitors are transported to Victoria’s nocturnal worlds where they are immersed in 360-degree responsive projections, breathtaking effects, and exquisite soundscapes.

They experience 10 unique environments in the 25-40 minute experience which is highly interactive making use of technology used by games such as Fortnite. They use sound to see like a bat, get to chase pheromones with moths and even swim with whales to discover the songlines that connect us all.

Tyama At Melbourne Museum. Source Museums Victoria. Photographer Eugene Hyland

The experience is grounded in first people’s knowledge and the word Tyama (CHAH-MUH) is the Keerray Woorroong language verb ‘to know’.

The experience ran for 6-months.