Geometry Prague and NeuroDigital Bring Iconic Sculptures to Life for the Blind and Visually Impaired

hands on sculpture

Geometry, in partnership with NeuroDigital, is making art more accessible to the blind with an immersive VR experience using VR haptic glove technology.

The new art experience is unveiled at the Touching Masterpieces exhibition, staged by Geometry at the National Gallery of Prague on 23-24 March. Three of the world’s most iconic sculptural masterpieces, each from pivotal moments in history - the bust of Nefertiti, Venus de Milo and Michelangelo’s David - have been transformed into virtual objects which people will “see” through haptic glove technology for the very first time.

Geometry Prague’s Creative Director, Julia Dovlatova, comments, “Through curiosity, the pursuit of innovation and a passion for creativity, we realized that specially-adapted haptic technology could open doors to a unique art experience for the blind. Our collaboration with NeuroDigital helped us fine-tune haptic gloves to “see” art through virtual reality touch.”

The haptic gloves control realistic hands in virtual space. When the virtual hand touches a 3D object in the virtual world, the technology identifies the object and sends feedback in the form of vibrations. The Avatar VR glove has been customized specifically for this project by being enriched with multi-frequency technology able to stimulate different types of skin cells’ tactile responses – to provide the blind with the most accurate perception of the 3D virtual object.

NeuroDigital founder and CEO, Luis Castillo, explains, “We founded our company to improve quality of life through disruptive technologies like virtual reality. So far we’ve worked in aerospace, health, and research. So, when Geometry came to us with an idea to democratize our most advanced tech, we went all in. We’re very proud that this latest development of VR haptic gloves is helping to bring art to the visually impaired with real-life applications.”

Comments Barbara Hucková, Executive Director of the Leontinka Foundation for the blind and visually impaired, "Blind children are usually taught in school with relief aids and tactile pictures that far from accurately reflect reality. This new technology is an incredible breakthrough allowing pupils to touch what was absolutely unattainable before”.

“Touching Masterpieces” has been created in collaboration with Geometry Prague, NeuroDigital, and the Leontinka Foundation.

adobo magazine, April 9, 2018 | 10:34pm