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Multimedia script live at British Museum

In Museums on April 22, 2010 at 9:54 am

The British Museum’s new exhibition on renaissance art opens today. Fra Angelico to Leonardo: Italian Renaissance Drawings is housed in the round reading room at the centre of the museum and features 100 drawings from the great artists of the time – Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael etc. (Alas no Donatello.)

In addition to the interpretation in the exhibition there’s also a multimedia guide to the show – basically an audio-guide with a screen so they can show you images at the same time – written by yours truly. It takes visitors around some of the star objects in the show.

Most of the drawings in this exhibition aren’t large. But these handheld guides allow visitors to get right up close to the pictures, and to make detailed comparisons on screen between what they see in front of them and other pictures in the show, indeed in other museums.

One of the golden rules of writing audio is: don’t write about what the visitor can’t see. But in this case we can write about what they can’t see as we can put it right infront of them on a screen. And on that note, there’s also an audio-described version of the script recorded for visually impaired visitors, using the main script, but with extra levels of visual description.

If you want to hear some of the guide, the lovely people at the British Museum have provided the Director’s introduction and five of the stops to listen to for free online here. And you get to hear the dulcit tones of Lindsay Duncan reading the script.

The exhibition is open until 25 July.

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