Interactive painting lets visitors hear & feel art

A new interactive gallery installation in Shoreditch uses haptic technology to allow visitors to hear and feel a painting.

The project, created by Middlesex University, aims to turn admiring fine art into an immersive experience that stimulates additional senses.

Currently found at Shoreditch Red Gallery, the installation features a stormy seascape painting in front of a robotic device that the visitor holds onto. By moving their hand, the visitor can explore the painting, activating 360 degree sounds and haptic feedback (they can 'feel' the weight of the sea, for example) depending on the part of the painting they're 'in'.

Middlesex University Creative Directors Florian Dussopt and Nick Phillips are the minds behind the project, which they've titled 'Into the Frame', and enlisted the help of staff in the University's science and technology departments as well as 3D sound specialist Dave Hunt. Artist Paul West created the painting itself.

"By building a bridge between fine art and the science of haptics and 3D sound we have created a new third dimension of art to allow visitors to explore and feel through touching and listening," says Nick in a press release.

"It's been great creating not only an art installation, but also promising a tool for neuro-rehabilitation," adds Florian, who believes the project could also help with brain injury rehab. "It has potential to help with brain spatial problems, and during the project we published and presented a research paper on this at the International Conference for rehabilitation robotics in the USA."

Find out more about the project by watching the video above, or visiting the Middlesex University website.

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