Open CAMERA is a renovation project to increase participation by breaking down physical, cognitive, and sensory barriers to better meet the needs of CAMERA’s diverse audiences.
Beginning in the fall of 2023, CAMERA will unveil the results of its significant architectural renovation, combined with the creation of a visual-tactile path dedicated to the history of photography, as part of the Open CAMERA project.
> Architectural renovation
The architectural renovation project, developed by Studio Ata, aims to eliminate architectural barriers and make CAMERA a relaxing space of mental and physical well-being, where everyone can adapt their visit experience to their individual times and needs.
The main measure is a system of ramps from the sidewalk outside to the exhibition and other service areas. The new reception area is more accessible and doubles as a ticket office, while on the opposite side is the book and merchandising shop; the bookstore, all of which is accessible, is now in a brighter and airier environment. The itinerary includes new seating and a quiet, serene space at the end of the gallery where visitors can read, consult digital content on a tablet, take a break between exhibitions, or even breastfeed. To enhance the sense of well-being and improve air quality, two green areas with special essences have been created.
> The history of photography at your fingertips: a permanent multimedia path
A permanent multimedia exhibition dedicated to the history of photography: an original project, the first of its kind in Italy in terms of type and concept, a long timeline created through various tools to allow everyone, including the blind and visually impaired, to enjoy texts, images and digital content.
The evolution of photography over time is told through a selection of the most relevant images, covering the main genres and modes through which photography has evolved over nearly two centuries, from portraiture to reportage, from art to fashion photography, to images generated by artificial intelligence.
The visual-tactile panels are made using the sophisticated thermoforming technique, which allows a faithful reproduction of the image and highlights the main features of the subject through a transparent resin relief. The presentation of the image from a purely visual point of view and, on the same support, the possibility for the blind or visually impaired to explore it tactilely, thanks to the resin reliefs, offers a homogeneous itinerary where the message conveyed remains complete and incisive. Each panel has Braille captions and detailed video descriptions are also available in LIS (Italian Sign Language).
To tell the story of photography in a comprehensive way, it is necessary to place the image in the broader social and political context: images alternate with videos, which can be enjoyed through screens equipped with a state-of-the-art amplification system that promotes accurate, non-invasive audio. Images and videos are installed through a system of tracks so that the path can be progressively integrated with new content. CAMERA’s accessible paths are created in collaboration with Tactile Vision Onlus and Arteco.
The Open CAMERA project obtained funding through the National Recovery and Resilience Plan. Mission 1 – Digitization, Innovation, Culture and Tourism – Component 3 – Tourism and Culture 4.0 (M1C3), Measure 1 “Cultural Heritage for the Next Generation,” Investment 1.2 “Removing physical and cognitive barriers in museums, libraries and archives to enable wider access and participation in culture” funded by the European Union – NextGenerationEU.