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posted 30 November 2015 at 13:18:11

A Finnish company has come up with a truly ingenious way of, for the first time, allowing blind and visually impaired people to experience works of art through their fingertips. Unseen Art is convinced that 3D printing holds the key to enabling the blind to enjoy art as much as seeing people do, by scanning and printing masterpieces such as Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa or Van Gogh's Sunflowers in 3D. This would then permit those who can't see the art to touch it with their fingertips and form their own impression of the painting.

The project is currently crowdfunding on Indiegogo ( offering 3D prints of the Mona Lisa for backers, which can be kept or donated to an organisation that helps the blind and visually impaired. The money raised will be used to fund an online platform where the 3D files will be downloadable for free, making 3D printable art available worldwide. The Mona Lisa is currently the only completed 3D artwork, but a panel of curators will later put together an entire collection of masterpieces.

You can get a sense of how this could open up a whole new world to people who have never experienced art before by watching the YouTube video in which Riikka first touches the Mona Lisa's face at A truly inspired and inspiring use of 3D technology!