Arts Education for the Blind
There was a seminar on arts education for the visually impaired which was held in New York.
The main theme of the seminar is to explore the subjects of arts education for the blind, including how blind people can appreciate art, how the blind can use other senses to engage in creative work, and how to find a deeper level of awareness when the blind interact with the art.
The main purpose of the seminar is to restore the tactile sensation that had already been overlooked for a long time.
Some famous museums, such as The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Minneapolis Institute of Art, and Denver Art Museum, focus on the tactile exploration of art so that the sighted or visually impaired can use the tactile sensation to increase the understanding of the art image.
These museums try to reach the goals of “access of all” and “universal learning”. The use of tactile awareness of art is a trend of a global dimension.
However, according to my observation, it seems that tactile sensation is only used in contemporary art museum, such as the Albert Museum in London and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.
A marvelous example is the Tate Modern in London. In this gallery, the organic glass (Perspex) is used to reshape the work of Picasso.
In this way, the blind people not only get an understanding of the work structure but also catch the spirit of the notion of modernism in art.
This kind of multi-sensory experience triggers my thinking about the Zhuangzi saying: If the movements of my hand are neither gentle nor violent, the idea in my mind is realized. (this passage originated from Thien Tao or ‘The Way of Heaven’).
At the same time, there is an idea about exploring the sensory function of “super-additive”. In other words, when the brain accepts a single sensory stimulus, it is unable to produce the full effect of cognition; therefore, if two or more sensory messages stimulate the brain at the same time, the brain can then produce more specific cognition about the object.
For this matter, we can employ different perceptions to explore the multifaceted fantastic world.
Legge, James, tr. 1891. The Sacred Books of China: The Texts of Taoism. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Originally published at http://poeticmindfulness.wordpress.com on August 4, 2020.