Send Me Sfmoma By San Francisco Museum Of Modern Art

Jay Mollica

Creative Technologist

San Francisco Museum Of Modern Art

SFMOMA 151 Third Street San Francisco, CA 94103 United States

IDCA Best App Gold 2017

On Going Viral: How SFMOMA Sent Art to Millions of Americans via SMS



There are over 35,000 objects in SFMOMA’s permanent collection. It’s large. So large, in fact, that we can only show about 5% of it in the galleries at any given time.


In a world oversaturated with information, we asked ourselves: how can we generate personal connections between a diverse cross section of people and the artworks in our collection? How can we provide a more comprehensive experience of our collection? Enter Send Me SFMOMA. Send Me SFMOMA was conceived as a way to bring transparency to the collection while engendering further exploration and discussion among users. Send Me SFMOMA is an SMS service that provides an approachable, personal, and creative method of sharing the breadth of SFMOMA’s collection with the public. Text 572-51 with the words “send me” followed by a keyword, a color, or even an emoji and you’ll receive a related artwork image and caption via text message. For example “send me the ocean” might get you Pirkle Jones’ Breaking Wave, Golden Gate; “send me something blue” could result in Éponge (SE180) by Yves Klein; and “send me 💐” might return Yasumasa Morimura’s An Inner Dialogue with Frida Kahlo (Collar of Thorns). Each text message triggers a query to the SFMOMA collection API , which then responds with an artwork matching your request.



The project debuted to the public on June 19, 2017 and has since received and responded to nearly 5 million text messages with the average person texting us over 5 times. Though the hype has died down since last summer, the service is still responding to thousands of text messages per week.


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