Art and Exhibitions

Article excerpt

Byline: Lucy Bell

Sculpture show's magical touch. . .

Blind Alphabet C, Herbert Art Gallery, Coventry, until March 25.

THE first thing you see at this exhibition is dozens of black metal mesh boxes.

But don't be put off - that's part of the message. That's how blind or visually impaired people might feel when confronted by showcases in art galleries, where the treasures behind the glass have to be revealed by a sighted person.

So close your eyes, open the boxes and explore what's inside - there are some great surprises! If you're lucky enough to have one of the blind exhibition guides with you the message is even more clear - and more fun. And there is braille on the boxes for blind and partially sighted visitors.

Inside the boxes are beautiful sculptures by South African artist Willem Boshoff. Each sculpture represents a word that is no longer part of our everyday language.

These now obscure but precisely descriptive words have fallen into disuse, Boshoff believes, because we no longer need to describe objects clearly in our modern world of photos, TV, video and computers.

But exploring by touch is the major means of information for those who can't see and have no access to this visual media. …