Globally, the application of museum interpretative theory is an effective way to communicate with diverse and democratic audiences.
However, museums inadequately relate to their audiences, as the world in which they operate is volatile and in recent years has dramatically
changed. Despite transformative efforts, museum interpretation does not always meet audience expectations. This is largely due to many
challenges facing museums, such as a continued lack of interpretative expertise, funding not directed at widening public engagement and
superficial consultation. Social and political issues to address decolonisation, multiple identities and inclusive narratives towards shared
notions of nation building, social cohesion and museum change often compound these problems. The purpose of this paper is to explore
the application of a (re)interpretation theory known as the IPOP theory to engage South African museum audiences better, and more
inclusively. IPOP is orientated towards museum audiences’ primary interests: Ideas (intangible), People, Objects and the Physical (tangible).
As a model, it has never been utilised in a South African environment before, nor surfaced within local museological discourse. It offers a
stimulating avenue of new enquiry for South African museology as well as heritage site reinterpretation. IPOP theory has been successful
in both Western and non-Western contexts, so it has potential for Africa and the global south. The IPOP theory is introduced as a method
and proposes practical benefits utilising a pilot study, which has already produced positive outcomes. The IPOP theory certainly has strong
resolve in a South African museum (re)interpretative context and has further potential to unpack within the ongoing decoloniality discourse.