Lens and Constellations Web Image.jpg
Lens and Constellations Web Image.jpg
Image credit: Phoebe Powell

ACMI and Swinburne University of Technology presents

Collaboration on the Lens and Constellations


COVID-19 update

Following the latest advice from the Victorian Government ACMI will be temporarily closed from Fri 6 August. Unfortunately, all museum visits and events booked until Thurs 12 August inclusive will be cancelled or postponed. 

We look forward to welcoming you back to ACMI soon. Look after yourself, and each other.


During this panel our presenters will discuss how they collaborated to create ACMI’s Lens and Constellation, both of which are central to the experience of The Story of the Moving Image exhibition.

ACMI’s Chief Experience Officer, Seb Chan will provide an overview of the idea behind The Lens and Constellation. The Constellation is a human-curated digital map that reveals unexpected connections that branch off every object that a visitor collects on the Lens while navigating the exhibition. The Lens works similarly to a debit card where it collects information for the visitor to explore later, allowing you to remember your experience around the exhibition. Liam Burke and Jessica Balanzetegui will explain the process involving Swinburne students who helped map hundreds of thematic, stylistic, and biographical links between the exhibition’s collection and wider examples of film, TV and screen media. Blair Kuys and Seb Chan will discuss the significant research and development that was required for the Lens’ design and production, describing the process of collaboration that took place between Swinburne and ACMI.

Major Academic Partner

Jessica Balanzategui is a Senior Lecturer in Cinema and Screen Studies at Swinburne University of Technology, and a Chief Investigator at the Centre for Transformative Media Technologies. Jessica is the author of The Uncanny Child in Transnational Cinema (Amsterdam University Press, 2018), and has published widely on children's media, entertainment cultures and technologies, and Gothic and horror screen genres in leading international journals including The Journal of Visual Culture, Quarterly Review of Film and Video, and NECSUS: European Journal of Media Studies. Jessica is a founding editor of Amsterdam University Press’s book series, Horror and Gothic Media Cultures, and received the 2020 Australian Film Institute Research Fellowship for her research on Australian children’s media.

Liam Burke is the coordinator of the Cinema and Screen Studies Major and a research member of the Centre for Transformative Media Technologies. His research interests include, Adaptation, New Media and Migration, Transmedia Storytelling, Comics and Manga, Animation, and Transnational Screen Traffic. He has written and edited several books including Superhero Movies, Fan Phenomena: Batman, and The Comic Book Film Adaptation, and the co-edited collections The Superhero Symbol and Superheroes Beyond. Liam is a chief investigator on the Superheroes research project with ACMI, which was responsible for Cleverman: The Exhibition and Superheroes: Realities Collide VR experience.

Seb Chan is Chief Experience Officer at ACMI in Melbourne. He is the senior executive responsible for the Experience & Engagement division of the museum guiding teams responsible for visitor experience, marketing, brand & communication design, digital products, technology, and the museum’s collections, digitisation & digital preservation programs. Prior to ACMI, Seb led the digital renewal and transformation of the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum in New York (2011–15) and the Powerhouse Museum’s pioneering work in open access, mass collaboration and digital experience during the 2000s. His work has won awards from American Alliance of Museums, One Club, D&AD, Fast Company and Core77. He is an Adjunct Professor, School of Media and Communications, in the College of Design and Social Context at RMIT and National President of the Australasian Museums and Galleries Association.

Blair Kuys is a Professor of Design at Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia. He is currently the Associate Dean of Research in the School of Design and Architecture and is an active researcher who is instrumental in embedding industrial design research, theories and practice in traditional manufacturing fields to sustain and grow productivity. Blair completed a PhD with the CSIRO and Swinburne University of Technology in 2010 and has been instrumental in helping numerous manufacturers diversify into global markets, which has recently expanded to Hong Kong, China, Malaysia and India. In 2018, 2019 and 2020 he won Good Design Awards for his products with Atlite Skylights and is the recipient of six Vice-Chancellor's Awards at Swinburne University of Technology.



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