Dialogue in the Dark

The Playful Mind

As an exhibition developer, I’ve often been asked which has been one of my favorite exhibitions. Few exhibitions have left such a lasting impression on me as the one I couldn’t see.

I didn’t see “Dialogue in the Dark” on a late summer’s day in 1997. As I entered the exhibition boat docked at the Amsterdam harbor, I was thrown from bright sunshine into complete darkness. A voice out of the black introduced its owner: “I am blind and today I am your guide to my world”.

Amidst nervous giggling, stumbling about and bumping against each other, our guide proceeded to lead us through a world devoid of visual stimuli. Disorientation does not begin to describe this unique experience of suddenly being robbed of your major sensory organ. The silly giggling soon gave way to feelings of dizziness, light nausea and wholehearted fascination. We were taken down corridors and into different…

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