Check out SITES totally free mobile apps! Be sure to write us a review, or contact us to let us know how we're doing. If you happen to be a teacher or educator, we're thrilled that you found us, and we'd love to know how you've included these apps in your classroom activities. Please send us a message on Facebook or Twitter!
Don't forget to check out the Smithsonian's other great mobile products—from tours to games to augmented reality!
Romare Bearden: A Black Odyssey Audio Tour
This free app is a conversational audio tour (available for web here) with 20 stops that gives listeners new intellectual routes into the works of Romare Bearden and into the bewitching heart of Homer’s “The Odyssey.”
Voices on the tour include Dr. Robert O’Meally, exhibition curator and Zora Neale Hurston Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University. He is joined by Diedra Harris-Kelley, Bearden’s niece and the co-director of the Romare Bearden Foundation. Artist, writer and musician, Paul Miller, aka DJ Spooky, provides additional perspective, contributing his own thoughts about Bearden’s genius. Jazz musician Branford Marsalis contributes to the audio tour with the song “Sea Breeze,” originally composed by the multi-talented Romare Bearden, who is the subject of the traveling exhibition "Romare Bearden: A Black Odyssey," on tour through 2014.
Romare Bearden: Black Odyssey Remixes
This lively iPad app allows you to remix works from Bearden's original series to create your own unique works of art, and express your personal journey. Choose from a variety of Bearden’s backdrops and layer in shapes and forms from other collages. Or cut your own shapes, add personal photos, change the colors of various elements and resize them. You can also add your words and your descriptions.
Music played a big role in Bearden’s life and his art, so the app also incorporates sound. While you build your collages, you can mash up audio such as ocean waves, jazz riffs, warriors fighting, or even your own voice. An option to record the user's voice is also included and can be played back in a loop as the artwork is being created.
Save your visual collages and post them to a public gallery--where they can be tagged and revisited by other users--and share with friends on Facebook, Twitter, or email. You can also learn more about the traveling exhibition, Bearden's life, and the companion exhibition audio tour app.
Stories from Main Street
Part of a larger Museum on Main Street (MoMS) program initiative, Stories from Main Street, for iOS, collects stories about small-town American life. The app is an important tool in developing the Smithsonian's Oral Histories archive and collection and is a fun but important way for people to "get themselves into the Smithsonian!" Use your smartPhone to record your story about the American experience OR, listen to other stories from people just like you, across the United States.
Selected stories from the application will be featured on the Stories from Main Street website and on the Smithsonian's social media channels! Help us document the rich history of America’s small towns with stories that exemplify the excitement, diversity, and creativity of their citizens. The Smithsonian wants to hear from you!