Stomachion Prototyping

Skills: Exhibit Design, Exhibit Development
Client: The Walters Art Museum (Baltimore, MD)

This hands-on interactive was included in the exhibition Lost and Found: The Secrets of Archimedes at the Walters Art Museum. Similar to the game tanagrams, this game consists of a number of shapes that are fitted together to make a square. Archimedes had determined the number of solutions—over 5,000.

From a meeting with educators, designers and curators, and researching this ancient game, I created a series of prototypes. Initially I tested different sizes of the shapes to determine the best size that would be impactful in the space, but wouldn’t be too large where the pieces would be difficult to handle. I also tested and suggested hints that could get the visitor to the solution quicker. Finally, after educators expressed concerns about the shapes being made from wood and plexiglass, I suggested that the shapes be made from different colors of industrial felt.