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Touching Masterpieces

Touching Masterpieces: VR for the vision-impaired

How do people with vision impairments get the opportunity to appreciate masterpieces if they cannot see them, and they cannot touch them? Audio descriptions do a great deal to equip the imagination, but a recent project at the National Gallery of Prague gets hands-on with some of the gallery’s masterpieces to paint a clearer picture.

Billed as a virtual reality experience, the Touching Masterpieces project uses sensorial gloves to provide haptic feedback to vision-impaired participants as they glide their hands through mid-air, simulating the feeling of actually touching a sculptural masterpiece.

The gloves vibrate in different manners when the person touches a 3D object (in this case, a sculpture) in virtual space. Different vibrations and haptic feedback distinguish textures and shape, and either to the fingertips, palm or whole hand.

Touching Masterpieces - Haptic VR for the Blind Touching Masterpieces - Haptic VR for the Blind Touching Masterpieces - Haptic VR for the Blind

Visit the Touching Masterpieces website to learn more: http://www.touchingmasterpieces.com/