Artwork Accessibility for People with Low Vision Through Augmented Reality

34 Pages Posted: 31 May 2024

See all articles by Dragan Ahmetovic

Dragan Ahmetovic

University of Milan

Cristian Bernareggi

Università degli Studi di Milano

Sergio Mascetti

University of Milan

Abstract

Accessibility to culture and art is recognized as a universal right. Yet, accessing places of cultural interest and enjoying works of art entails many barriers for people with visual impairments. Due to this, despite the fact that many people with visual impairments are interested in participating to cultural life, only a few actually visit museums and are able to appreciate works of art. In this paper we explore the use of Augmented Reality as a means to provide more widespread and equitable access to art venues and artworks. Specifically, we focus on the accessibility needs of people with Low Vision. We investigate how people with low vision frame, access and interact with works of art in Augmented Reality, using a mobile app specifically designed for accessible museum visits. In particular, through a user study with 10 participants, we explore the specific challenges related to the accessibility of artworks of diverse types: a medium size painting, a large scale tapestry, a statue, and a historical keyboard instrument. Results uncover advantages and limitations of the proposed approach, considering different AR functionalities and artwork types. In particular, AR access to art venues through a mobile AR app running on the user's own device is perceived as useful and usable.

Keywords: Artwork accessibility, augmented reality, visual impairments, low vision

Suggested Citation

Ahmetovic, Dragan and Bernareggi, Cristian and Mascetti, Sergio, Artwork Accessibility for People with Low Vision Through Augmented Reality. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4849513 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4849513

Dragan Ahmetovic (Contact Author)

University of Milan ( email )

Via Festa del Perdono, 7
Milan, 20122
Italy

Cristian Bernareggi

Università degli Studi di Milano ( email )

Italy

Sergio Mascetti

University of Milan ( email )

Via Festa del Perdono, 7
Milan, 20122
Italy

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