May 19, 2017; Hyperallergic
The branding of a museum is nothing to be taken lightly. In fact, other nonprofits could learn a thing or two from those that carry it through even to their nonworking pages.
An error page on a website is generally pretty standard. You know the drill: a “page not found” banner accompanied by a 404 error message. But, in truth, those who land on such a page might be people you’d rather not lose to the universe of unbroken links. In fact, your 404 page could represent the “who” of you so people don’t go away in a pique, thinking you just don’t care.
Hyperallergic reports with many intriguing examples of some museums getting creative with their 404 pages. Among New York City museums, the New Museum’s 404 page, for instance, features a Maurizio Cattelan horse with its head implanted in a wall.
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Another Cattelan piece, featuring a Pinocchio floating face-down in a boat, sometimes graces the 404 page of the Guggenheim, which rotates a set of upsetting images.
The Natural History Museum’s 404 page sports a stegosaurus skeleton and the tag, “That page may have evolved or become extinct.” Houston’s National Museum of Funeral History has a simple but elegant coffin, accompanied by, “You have made a grave mistake!”
The Hyperallergic article has picked out its 30 favorites from museumland, but let us know if you have examples from elsewhere.—Ruth McCambridge