Visual Access Formed by Architecture and its Influence on Visitors' Spatial Exploration in a Museum

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Rui Li
Hongchun Huang


A visitor’s experience in space is one key research topic carried out by researchers from multiple disciplines. Regarding the architecture of a museum, research has shown that it is linked to a visitor’s spatial experience in that space. These spatial experiences are relating to aspects such as a visitor’s memory of location, feeling in the space, and making sense of exhibitions. Following the suggestion that architecture influences a visitor’s spatial experiences, we introduce a study addressing the accessibility of one’s vision, named visual access, formed by the architecture and its association with visitor’s exploration pattern. Additional approaches including observation and interviews were carried out to address this question. Results show that direct visual access has a higher influence than physical distance in a visitor’s decision for initial exploration of a museum. In addition, these results are also used to address the pattern of exploration taken by visitors. 

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