A NEW app designed to transform how youngsters engage with art has been launched at a County Durham museum.

The Artcasting app, which uses special beacons to allow guests to view the art on their phone or tablet and then digitally cast them to a new location while adding a story about what the photograph means to them, was launched at The Bowes Museum, in County Durham yesterday (November 27).

It also allows the museum to collect data showing how people are reacting to and engaging with the exhibition.

The app is the result of a research project being conducted by the University of Edinburgh in partnership with Artist Rooms, a collection of international modern and contemporary art.

It is owned by Tate and the National Galleries of Scotland, with The Bowes Museum being the first in England to trial the app.

At a special launch event last night (November 27), guests had the chance to use the app while viewing an exhibition of American photographer, Robert Mapplethorpe.

App developer, Chris Barker, who has been working on the app since May, said: “It’s about looking at availability and enjoyment of art.

“We produced an app through which you can send digital copies in the gallery to different locations in the world.”

He added: “We are hoping it will give a different perspective on the galleries and some valuable information to the galleries themselves who can track guests’ movements through the beacons.”

The app is specifically targeted at under 25s and Artist Rooms project coordinator, Celine Elliott, has been working with young people throughout the region since August to explore the concept.

With the help of The Impossible Project, the young people produced their own Polaroid pictures from digital ones – a process previously thought to be impossible after Polaroid stopped producing instant film in 2008.

“I think it’s a real coup for The Bowes Museum to be able to bring so an iconic photographer’s work to the North-East and potentially transport young people to a time and place that they would otherwise not see,” Mrs Elliott said.

“The app is really bringing it to life for them and that’s sometimes something museums forget about.”

The exhibition opens to the public today (November 28) and will run until April 24, 2016.

All under 25s who are Art Fund member will be able to enter free of charge by pre-registering online at thebowesmuseum.org.uk

For more information about the app visit artcastingproject.net