Inclusive digitization

Dipl.-Ing.(FH) Andreas Reichinger

Senior Research Engineer, Multiple Senses

reichinger(at) +43 1 908 98 92

Barrier-free art

"The Kiss" by Klimt as a tactile relief.

Especially in a country like Austria, where art and cultural heritage play an enormously important role in society, the question of how to make art accessible to all audiences is crucial. This is why we have been researching new inclusive ways of making art accessible and enriching for all museum visitors through Key Enabling Technologies. Over the past two decades, we have developed several innovative solutions for museums and built a broad network in the field of inclusive digitization.

Tactile reliefs

"Der Vogeldieb" as tactile relief.

VRVis has been researching and developing inclusive solutions for art and culture for over a decade. In order to make art accessible to visually impaired and blind people, VRVis has developed a software-based method that uses 3D scans or photographs of artworks to convert them into digital 2.5D models. These digital models serve as templates for tactile reliefs, which are milled from various materials, such as the durable Corian. The tactile reliefs are characterized by high quality despite low production costs. They offer even the smallest details of the artwork as tactile subtleties and open up new dimensions of art experience for museums and the culturally interested public.

VRVis has already produced over 30 tactile reliefs for more than 15 renowned European museums, such as the Belvedere, the Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna or the Victoria & Albert Museum in London.

Interactive multimedia guide for museum objects

A girl touches a tactile relief of Pieter Breughel's Bird Thief in front of a screen showing a digital version of the painting.
At the Vienna Research Festival 2022, VRVis presented its interactive multimedia guide to thousands of visitors.

As part of the EU-funded Horizon2020 project ARCHES, coordinated by VRVis, we developed the interactive multimedia guide for museum objects, which is an inclusive art education tool that interlinks the senses of sight, touch and hearing. The interactive multimedia guide for museum objects is currently being further developed in the EU-funded project Beaucoup and tested especially for use by an older target group.

The technical setup is an HP Sprout with touchscreen and depth camera, which offers multimedia content at the simple point of a finger as a supplement to tactile reliefs. This includes sign language videos, audio files, subtitles, soundscapes, animations or special color projections that, for example, show different stages of a painting's development. The Multimedia Guide is characterized by a wide range of low-threshold and intuitively understandable interaction options, a human-centered solution that enriches modern museums.

Digital Preservation

Four columns of an ancient Roman tomb reconstructed from aerial photos 3D.
Four orthophotos of the Igel Column on the Moselle: 3D reconstruction of images taken while the Roman tomb was being restored.

The preservation, monitoring and maintenance of old building structures, which are often part of cultural heritage, is an immense task. Together with Linsinger Ziviltechnik, we have investigated and developed methods that enable the most efficient and precise stocktaking, identification and documentation of changes to buildings: digital preservation. Photogrammetric methods are used to create high-resolution 3D models from a wide variety of image material of an object. These models show the condition of the building structure much more accurately than visible to the naked eye.


Flyer Taktile Reliefe und Multimedia Guide

Flyer Tactile reliefs and multimedia guide for museum objects

Download Flyer Tactile Reliefs and Multi Media Guide for Museum Objects  (3 MB, pdf)