Art Beyond Sight helps visitors who are blind, or have low vision, explore the world of art beyond the visual experience. Trained educators lead monthly events that use verbal descriptions, dynamic conversation, and multisensory materials to engage participants with the Museum’s collections and exhibitions.
We love to introduce people to Art Beyond Sight. There’s a lot happening behind the scenes to create this multifaceted gallery experience!
Choosing Works of Art
Each Art Beyond Sight event centers on two works of art. The program is often co-led by a team of two educators who work together to select works that speak to each other in terms of theme, subject matter, and/or materials. To provide a fresh experience for our participants, we choose works that feature an array of cultures, media, and time periods.
Planning the Program
Imagine describing a work of art to someone who has never seen it. Careful attention to descriptive language is key, so we spend a significant amount of time crafting our presentations.
We’re always thinking about how to enliven the program. Sometimes we include tactile experiences: If a work of art features a particular texture or fabric, for example, we might bring in a similar object for participants to touch. Also, music and poetry can provide a sense of place and ambiance. These elements give the art multisensory dimensions that inspire deeper discussion and discovery.
Leading the Program
No matter how much preparation and research we do, we never know exactly where the discussion will go. Our participants are engaged, curious, and likely to make observations that send us into uncharted waters—the sign of a great conversation!
One of the best things about this program is the camaraderie and sense of community that has flourished around it. We have a core group of dedicated participants, and we welcome new guests, too. We make sure to refer to each other by name, and at this point, we even know who we can count on for a dash of historical context or a good counterpoint. Over time, the Art Beyond Sight program has developed a warm, inspiring environment that enables all our visitors to find meaning in the art of the MFAH.
Learn more about Art Beyond Sight, which takes place on the second Saturday of each month.