Digital reality opens up the potential for preserving and studying the intangible heritage. But will the digitalization make the original less valuable? The way for museums to transform, yet not lose their identity, has been discussed at the "Museum in Digital. Going Beyond the Limits" session.

Modern technologies change the way a human interacts with art. From a passive observer, he or she changes into an active participant in the event, not only observing, hearing, feeling, but also choosing the course, plots, and actions. Museums have started massively using digital technologies. Art is becoming more accessible from a smartphone anywhere in the world.

"The Ministry of Culture talked about a virtual museum over five years ago. There were many disputes and concerns that people would stop visiting museums. However, the experience has quashed this belief. We got it: an exhibit, rather than a museum, is important. This is how the story with 3D museums and VR and AR projects began. We dared to experiment and ended up with a conclusion that it was the platform solutions that were being intentionally created for all museums, this was what we were going to work on over the coming years," said Vadim Vankov, Director of the Information and Digital Development Department of the Russian Ministry of Culture.

Irina Smirnova, Curator of Scientific, Educational and Cultural Projects, believes that now we are experiencing a certain crisis requiring us to reconsider the approaches to work with audience: "Competition has increased, theme parks, information entertainment centers and multimedia museums have emerged. However, a museum cannot be entertaining, it always carries a content. This is the first component for creating an installation capable of attracting people’s attention. The second one is a quality digital content. The third component is a proper technology solution using which we can make it all happen."

Dmitriy Gusev, CEO of the Big Museum Project, highlighted three most important needs of modern museums: attracting attention, keeping the existing and attracting the new audience. "Being a cloud solution for museums, our platform meets all these needs. It is based on audience-friendly media formats, storytelling techniques, and integration in search engines," said Dmitriy Gusev.

Experts stressed out the importance of digitalization and modern approaches to storing data making it possible to create visual archives and digital funds, accumulate large arrays of materials in one point and make them available to the public.