3D Printed Models Join ‘LISTEN TO THIS BUILDING’ exhibition on Visual Impairment


On Thursday, September 24th, students from The FIU College of Architecture + The Arts will exhibit 3D-printed models at the Miami Center of Architecture & Design’s (MCAD) exhibition LISTEN TO THIS BUILDING.

LISTEN TO THIS BUILDING which coincides with the 25th anniversary of American with Disabilities Act – is a groundbreaking exhibition that seeks to bridge the understanding between Downtown Miami architecture, accessibility, and independent publishing, specifically addressing visual impairments.

This collaborative project between EXILE Books, MCAD, and Miami Lighthouse for the Blind, is believed to be the first architectural exhibit designed to address accessibility for persons with visual impairments.

The exhibit will transform Downtown Miami buildings into a living, multimedia representation via four components. Inside, tactile relief works of Downtown Miami architecture will frame the MCAD gallery walls. Also within the space, large-scale, 3D models of selected buildings created by students from FIU’s College of Architecture + the Arts (CARTA) at its Miami Beach Urban Studios will be obscured to every sense, except touch.

MCAD’s exterior will house the project’s central component: an outdoor, public art installation featuring audio recordings in which community members share captivating stories about these historic downtown structures, accompanied by a large art piece inviting passersby toLISTEN” on MCAD’s front steps. EXILE Editions has published a Braille artist’s book featuring these local narratives and tactile reliefs to commemorate the exhibition, available onsite at EXILE’s bookstore alongside a range of titles specifically addressing architecture and the experience of persons with visual impairments.

Throughout the next few months, MCAD will be activating LISTEN TO THIS BUILDING in all sorts of ways that explore sense of place:

Thursday, September 3rd, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Tuesday, September 8th, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Celebrating 85 Years Through Tactile Art, Music, and Other Programs
by Miami Lighthouse for the Blind

Saturday, September 12th, 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Orientation & Mobility Tours for Downtown Art Days
by Miami Lighthouse for the Blind

Thursday, September 24th, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
CARTA In Resonance: MBUS, Models, and Music by FLEA

Thursday, October 1st, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Songs of the City, Songs in the Dark
by IlluminArts

Saturday, October 3rd, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Building Voice: A Talk by Architect Christopher Downey

Tuesday, October 6th, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Accessibility Talk: Advocacy & Community Awareness
R. David New in conversation with curator Sara Darling

The exhibition, mobility tours, and braille artist book are made possible with the support of the Miami Downtown Development Authority. Support for EXILE Books is made possible through the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Printing and consulting for the project generously provided by Miami Lighthouse for the Blind. Tactile illustrations offered by John De Salvo and Judith McBrien as featured in the Norton’s Pocket Guide to Miami Architecture. Programming partners include Miami Lighthouse for the Blind, Ability Explosion, Florida International University’s College for Architecture + the Arts, and IlluminArts. Additional sponsorship provided by Thomas Printworks and SFCA isaw + Subtropics.

The featured image is provided courtesy of EXILE books.

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