TRENTON, N.J.—The website and on-line tour for the Louis I. Kahn Trenton Bath House www.kahntrentonbathhouse.org has been recognized by the international American Association of Museum’s Muse Awards recently in Los Angeles.
Mercer County has long recognized the vast significance of the Bath House, and has been instrumental in the preservation of the property and buildings comprised.
The website received an Honorable Mention in the “Online Presence” category, which was one of this year’s most competitive categories, having more than 40 entries. The website, titled The Bath House: Trenton Jewish Community Center designed by Louis Kahn, was assembled by the Mercer County Division of Culture and Heritage and Ducat Media LLC, and was unveiled at a reception in July, 2009 at the Bath House. In its critique, judges called it “a simple well-designed website that proves that size does not matter. This site is executed beautifully and shines next to its much larger counterparts. It does an excellent job of incorporating technology, without allowing it to overwhelm the content. Elegant and engaging.”
The annual Muse awards given by the American Association of Museums' Media & Technology committee are “…presented to institutions or independent producers which use digital media to enhance the museum experience and engage new audiences… the MUSE awards celebrate scholarship, innovation, creativity and inclusivity.”
The website was created as an educational and informational tool for people searching the internet for information on the historic Bath Houses. In November 2007, as part of the historic preservation planning for the Ewing Township senior and community center in Ewing, a former Jewish Community Center designed by American Modernist architect, Louis Kahn, the Mercer County Planning Division recognized the need to create a tool that could be used to educate the general public about why the site should be preserved. That tool became www.kahntrentonbathhouse.org for which the County Planning Division partnered with the County's Division of Culture and Heritage to solicit funding and proposals for the project. The web site traces the place of the Bath House in the oeuvre of Louis Kahn, presents Kahn's original plans for the site and provides information on the County's restoration plans. The web site includes a pod cast tour of the location with a map, and interpretative material for the many especially international visitors who come to see the Bath House. The Bath House and Day Camp are currently being restored by Mercer County and Ewing Township, with financial assistance from the New Jersey Historic Trust. Construction will be complete in fall 2010. The website design was funded by Mercer County; National Trust for Historic Preservation /Jordan Preservation Excellence Fund; New Jersey Council for the Humanities; and the New Jersey Historical Commission.
The Louis I. Kahn Bath House website shared the spotlight with other impressive sites. Other winners were:
*Gold went to We Choose the Moon, a website on the 1969 Apollo space mission done with support from NASA and the federal government for the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum. http://wechoosethemoon.org/
*Silver went to Lincoln Memorial Interactive website created for the National Mall and Memorial Park, the federal group that maintains our national monuments www.nps.gov/featurecontent/ncr/linc/interactive/deploy/index.htm#/introduction
*Bronze went to the Redesign of MoMA.org by The Museum of Modern Art, NYC. www.moma.org/
To visit the Muse site, go to