The Social Lab at the Museum of Tolerance LA (MOTLA) uses imaginative technology to tell engaging stories that resonate with visitors of all demographics. Through immersive environments, interactives, and films, visitors confront real-world issues, inviting both introspection and conversation on local and global topics.
The centerpiece of the exhibit is the ‘Point of View’ experience cube that challenges visitors’ perspectives and suggests that there is another side to every story. As visitors move around the cube, they watch short films seen from a first person perspective that cover themes within stories of bullying, homelessness, looting, policing, and LGBTQ community and show that there’s always another side to every story. Everyday scenarios are experienced differently from distinct points of view. Where you stand can make all of the difference. The experience reminds us that a change in perspective may reveal an altogether different story, so before you form an opinion, check your point of view.
The exhibit follows up this introspective piece with ‘The Forum’ which gives visitors the opportunity to discuss and collaborate on divisive topics including immigration, prison reform, and healthcare. Together, visitors find compromises and solutions to hot-button issues working together and sharing video clips from people and experts, on opposing sides, involved in the issues and sharing their opinions. Up to 32 active visitors can participate in these scenarios.
‘Global Crisis Center’ presents ongoing threats happening around the world such as climate change, warfare, and pandemics and shares rare and personal stories of those affected. The circular interactive tables promote conversation between visitors and enables them to share the media they’re viewing with each other across the table.
The expansive history wall, “We The People”, showcases United States history from three unique lenses – intolerance, diversity, and rights from the years prior to the 1600s to today. The series of 20 giant vertical interactive touchscreens displays dynamic text and images that visitors explore and share, shedding light on the figures and events that wove together to create a mosaic of historical understanding of how we got to where we are today.
Through the main hall of the museum, the exhibits are curtained by mesh enclosures walls that display poignant imagery that immerses the visitors and calls on them to be present in this space while setting the tone for the interactives and films along their journey. Through a combination of technology and storytelling, The Social Lab at MOTLA challenges the visitors to rethink their own point of view and encourages them to broaden their perspectives, in hopes that they will be inspired to take action to combat bigotry and intolerance and to create a more positive future for generations.
Yazdani Studio of CannonDesign (architecture)
Sierra Construction (fabrication)
Electrosonic, Inc. (digital fabrication)
HLB Lighting Design (lighting design)