Please Do Touch -New Exhibit Allows the Blind to Touch Famous Pieces of Art
Madrid’s Prado Museum Introduces Unique Art Exhibition for the Blind
Guests feel a textured version of Velazquez’s “The Triumph of Baccus” (image courtesy of Museo Nacional Del Prado)
The Museo Nacional Del Prado (Madrid, Spain) opened its first exhibit for the sight impaired recently which allows people to touch recreated famous classical masterpieces. For the visually impaired, this is one of the first exhibits of its kind to cater to the audience with the intention of allowing all people sighted and non-sighted to experience famous paintings. It also might be one of the first exhibits where “touching the art” is actually encouraged in a fine art museum!
The exhibit, titled “Hoy Toca el Prado” opened January 20th and features famous works such as Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa and El Greco’s El caballero de la mano en el pecho. However, you wont find any originals in this exhibit, all paintings have been recreated with special textures so that people can now feel how the paintings look. Each painting has been “enhanced” using sophisticated 3D printing techniques to give certain fabrics, skins, hairs and other elements unique and identifiable textures.
No bullet proof glass here. Touch this version of Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa all you want! (image courtesy of Museo Nacional Del Prado)
So far, the exhibit has received positive revues with sight impaired patrons excited that the exhibition is catering to them and allowing them to experience art in a new and accessible way. “Hoy Toca el Prado” also features audioguides and texts in braille for its informational materials.
And while the exhibit should appeal to the museum’s sighted guests with its own unique merits, the museum is also offering opaque glasses so that everyone can experience the exhibit on a level footing.