Wisconsin Historical Society Announces Exhibit Designer for New Histor | Wisconsin Historical Society

News Release

Wisconsin Historical Society Announces Exhibit Designer for New History Museum Project

For Immediate Release (December 1, 2021)

Wisconsin Historical Society Announces Exhibit Designer for New Histor | Wisconsin Historical Society

Madison, WI. – The Wisconsin Historical Society has selected Ralph Appelbaum Associates (RAA) as the exhibit designer for Wisconsin’s new history museum project on the Capitol Square in Madison. RAA is an award-winning firm dedicated to the design of museums and narrative environments.

“Ralph Appelbaum Associates is an internationally renowned design firm that focuses on storytelling. Their extraordinary work engages people in innovative ways and helps them to make meaningful and memorable connections to the world around them,” said Christian Overland, Ruth and Hartley Barker Director & CEO for the Wisconsin Historical Society. “The expertise they bring to this project will enhance our mission effectiveness and position Wisconsin’s new history museum as a national attraction.”

Since 1978, RAA has created over 500 projects worldwide that are visited by more than 75 million people each year. Past and current projects include many of the world’s most recognizable cultural attractions. These include the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington D.C., the First Americans Museum in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, the Canadian Museum of Human Rights in Winnipeg, Canada, the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh, Scotland, The National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Missouri, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C. and many others. Their work has been honored with every major award for design and communication, including the first-ever National Design Award for Communications Design.

"RAA is thrilled to have been selected to contribute to Wisconsin’s new history museum project. We have long understood the power of design and experience to strengthen dialogue and connections between people,” said Ralph Appelbaum, founder of Ralph Appelbaum Associates. “Working with the WHS is an opportunity to engage with an experienced team, a wealth of content resources, and a dedicated community of advisors and stakeholders. We look forward to collaborating on the creation of a museum which reflects and amplifies the values of its community, and shares those values and stories with a broader visitorship."

The new, 100,000-square-foot history museum located in the heart of Madison will more than double exhibition space of the current museum. It is expected to welcome 200,000 guests annually and double the number of visiting students to 60,000. State-of-the-art digital technology will allow the museum to virtually connect with people from around the world.  The Society will begin the process to select architecture and engineering services in December.

“Our goal is to create captivating exhibits and programs that draw from the nearly 290 million items in the Society’s world-renowned collection,” said Angela Titus, assistant deputy director and chief program officer for the Wisconsin Historical Society. “We want the public to engage with history in a way that inspires curiosity about the past, gives context to the present, and helps us all build a better future.”

For more information on the new history museum project visit, wisconsinhistory.org/newmuseum.

About Wisconsin Historical Society
The Wisconsin Historical Society, founded in 1846, ranks as one of the largest, most active and most diversified state historical societies in the nation. As both a state agency and a private membership organization, its mission is to help people connect to the past by collecting, preserving and sharing stories. The Wisconsin Historical Society serves millions of people every year through a wide range of sites, programs and services. For more information, visit www.wisconsinhistory.org.