Speaker at the Baukulturkongress 2022 - Building Education

Today’s children are tomorrow’s planners, decision-makers and clients. I explain on the podium how to make inclusive thinking a topic in school, for example, via the topic of inclusive planning and building culture. In the audience are architects, teachers, educators. By raising awareness of open and broader thinking at an early age, they can transfer knowledge they have gained themselves to other areas of life and apply it later in their careers.

BAUKULTURKONGRESS 2022
November 17/18, 2022
Hans Sachs House Gelsenkirchen

Outdoor exhibition in the "Naturpark Südgelände" with a haptic experience

© Grün Berlin: Frank Sperling

If you want to inspire all users, let them grasp! What is essential for blind people is also a popular added value for sighted visitors of all ages. If tactile elements are part of the exhibition, all visitors feel attracted and their hands wander exploratively over the instructive content.

Only exhibitions with tactile and three-dimensional exhibits meet the requirements of „Design for All“, „Good Design“ (Dieter Rams) and the legal requirements of accessibility.

In Berlin’s „Naturpark Südgelände“ I was able to support the senate-owned Grün Berlin GmbH with my consulting assignment and thus launch, constructively accompany and successfully conclude a fantastic exhibition project for the users and for the client. Already during the tendering and conception phase, the course was set for a fully integrated implementation. Here, the question of how to now add accessibility was not asked after the fact, but rather a coherent and thus aesthetically flawless design concept could be developed.

The exhibition includes over a dozen panels on local flora, fauna and technology. Worth a visit for all! Have fun!

All photos: © Green Berlin/Frank Sperling

© Grün Berlin: Frank Sperling
Exhibit panels of the didactic open-air exhibition with tactile elements of the nature park.
© Grün Berlin: Frank Sperling
A small child enthusiastically discovers the tactile model of the long-eared owl, a symbol of nature conservation (artist Stephan Hüsch)
© Grün Berlin: Frank Sperling
Tables with tactile overview map and technical sights of the nature park
© Grün Berlin: Frank Sperling
The hands of a blind woman explore a tactile graphic on the sound production of grasshoppers

 

 

How does an oil painting become a crowd puller and also "visible" to blind museum visitors?

An important painting by Felix Nussbaum, the „Self-Portrait with the Jew’s Pass“, is to become a new crowd puller at the Felix Nussbaum Museum in the Osnabrück Museumsquartier through a 3D implementation.

Nussbaum-Relief

For this purpose, we used our capabilities to model the painting digitally as a relief and then to have it created from a Corian block using a computer-controlled state-of-the-art 5-head milling machine. Using CAD, we determine the surface structure (for the adequate haptics) and depth of the components according to pedagogical aspects for the blind and, like a sculptor, we redesign the work in the artist’s sense – with a focus on tactile mediation.

Umsetzung eines Felix Nussbaum-Gemäldes in Relief und Braille

Why museums must adopt a culture of accessibility

Beyond compliance with legal requirements: Museums must consider accessibility and inclusion as a permanent obligation. Access to social heritage and culture can be considered a fundamental right of all people, regardless of their identity or possibilities.

Museum professionals have a duty to facilitate access and make appropriate adjustments. Access is not limited to the needs of people with physical disabilities. Some groups have needs that may not be seen. All forms of disability, including reduced mobility, visual or hearing impairments, learning difficulties, limited strength or mobility, and language and communication difficulties must be taken into account.

Respecting equal access and inclusion in museums goes beyond compliance: it is about doing the „right thing“ now.

It is about ensuring that equal access is embedded in the culture and structures of the organisation and should not be seen as an „extra service“.

The responsibility thus assumed is also forward-looking and cost-effective for the museum. By understanding the needs of visitors and ensuring that these are taken into account in the preparation of the visit and from the start of new projects, no corrections, adaptations or parallel worlds are necessary.

#goinclusive can help museums to make their collections, buildings, programmes and services accessible to the entire public and has done so in many cases over the years. #goinclusive has supported numerous projects with creative and innovative approaches to improve access and promote inclusive practice in museums. Over the years, we have consistently pursued innovative ways to break down barriers and expand the participation of different audiences and visitors.

Simple, cost-effective things you can do include: Forward planning. User involvement and participation to find solutions. Working with organizations that support people with disabilities. Training and raising staff awareness of equality and diversity, including disability awareness training. We would be happy to advise and support you in these steps towards the realisation of your projects.

Ankündigung: Treffen Sie mich auf der SightCity im Mai in FFM

Die SightCity ist die größte internationale Fachmesse für Blinden- und Sehbehinderten-Hilfsmittel.

Ich werde voraussichtlich am Donnerstag 28. und Freitag 29. Mai dort sein und freue mich auch auf Verabredungen. Kontaktieren Sie mich im voraus, damit ich mir die Zeit für Sie nehmen kann.

Sie findet statt vom 27. bis 29. Mai 2020 im Kap Europa, dem Kongresshaus der Messe Frankfurt in Frankfurt am Main.

Das nationale Umsetzungsgesetz zum EAA für private Unternehmen

Eine unmittelbare Verpflichtung der privaten Unternehmen in Deutschland ergibt sich erst aus der nationalen Gesetzgebung. Dennoch ist es für Unternehmen heute schon wichtig und vorausschauend, sich auf die Rechtsentwicklung einzustellen.

Die Regelung gilt für Produkte, die nach dem 28. Juni 2025 in Verkehr gebracht, und Dienstleistungen, die nach dem 28. Juni 2025 erbracht werden.

Was ist also demnächst barrierefrei zu gestalten?

Die Richtlinie verpflichtet unter anderem, den gesamten Online-Handel barrierefrei zu gestalten. Lediglich Kleinstunternehmen, die weniger als zehn Beschäftigte und höchstens einen Jahresumsatz oder eine Jahresbilanzsumme von 2 Millionen Euro haben, sind ausgenommen.

Außerdem müssen Hardware-Systeme für die Benutzer/-innen barrierefrei gestaltet werden und zwar einschließlich der Oberflächen bzw. Schnittstellen wie Betriebssysteme. Also alle Computer, Smartphones und Tablets sowie natürlich Bestell- oder Zahlungsterminals, die sich in einer realen Verkaufsstelle befinden (natürlich auch ein Kartenlesegerät im Supermarkt oder auch eine Parkuhr im öffentlichen Raum).

Weitere Verpflichtungen zur barrierefreien Gestaltung betreffen:

  • Bankdienstleistungen, einschließlich Geldautomaten, worunter auch Bankautomaten zu verstehen sind
  • die elektronische Kommunikation
  • den Zugang zu audiovisuellen Medien.  Zu den audiovisuellen Medien zählen nicht nur die audiovisuellen Angebote aller öffentlich-rechtlichen sondern auch die der privaten Fernsehanstalten.
  • Video-on-Demand-Angebote (Fernsehen auf Abruf), die von internationalen Streaming-Diensten verbreitet werden
  • die Barrierefreiheit audiovisueller Mediendienste werden in einer eigenen Richtlinie geregelt (2018/1808).
  • E-Books
  • Aspekte der Personenverkehrsdienste bezogen auf alle vier Verkehrsträger: Flug, Bahn, Bus und Schiff.

 

Welche Anforderungen sind umzusetzen?

  • Grundverständnis = es geht um maximale Nutzung durch Menschen mit Behinderungen, nicht um Gleichberechtigung
  • Die bauliche Umwelt, in der Dienstleistungen erbracht werden, die von der Richtlinie erfasst werden, müssen den Barrierefreiheitsanforderungen genügen

    Vorgaben für die nationale Umsetzung

    • Die Richtlinie ist bis zum 28. Juni 2022 in nationales Recht umzusetzen
    • Die deutschen Gesetze müssen ab dem 28. Juli 2025 angewandt werden

Consulting services for the redesign of the exhibitions in the Museum Lichtenberg

Ansicht Museum LichtenbergA reference library on Berlin and regional history and a local history archive are attached to the museum.
In addition, programmes on district history, the preservation of culture and tradition, as well as museum education projects and research activities with and for children and young people or groups of schoolchildren are offered.

The contract for expert consulting and supporting planning and implementation includes:

  1. Expert consulting regarding inclusion and the corresponding pedagogy during conception, curation and design.
  2. Expert evaluation and consultancy on drafts, concepts and plans for accessibility and inclusion. If necessary, recommendations for the improvement of accessibility or the achievement of inclusion.
  3. Assessment of concepts and drafts by representatives of the user groups and feedback workshop to check results. 
Expenses for management, support, organisation, accounting etc.
  4. Final approval of furniture, architecture, exhibits, guidance system, design etc. in terms of accessibility and inclusion. If necessary deficiency report.

why you need an accessibility consultant

Accessibility is known to be mandatory for public buildings and buildings with public access.

It is often mistakenly assumed that this refers to wheelchair accessibility, but of course it goes far beyond that.

About 30 % of the German population (and this is calculated conservatively) are not within the „norm range“ of DIN, but depend on accessibility of various kinds. These 30% are extremely diverse. This shows that attention is required if one does not want to risk that many people feel excluded or are actually physically excluded. In the ideal case, however, we are not talking about corrections or additions being adapted retrospectively, but about an awareness being developed during the design process in order to produce good, aesthetic and impeccable „design for all“.

Of course, we know accessibility in everyday life without perceiving it: The seat and steering wheel position of a car can be changed for accessibility only. The typewriter, the straw, the bicycle, the touch screen, the pizza cutter, audio books and much more are based solely on considerations to support people with handicaps in an activity.

Barrier-free designs do not require any compromises in aesthetics (unfortunately this is a widespread prejudice). Accessibility is not ugly but a concept and design tool and design basis.

My task is to be a motivating contributor of ideas and a point of contact between clients, architects, interior, product and graphic designers, who has an eye on the diversity of the people out there and thus makes comprehensive solutions possible. Ideally, I’m involved in the design process at an early stage in the meetings – to bring in the idea and the enthusiasm for the project. A kick-off meeting to raise awareness in advance makes a lot of sense. During the actual implementation there are always a lot of questions and a learning process starts.

Factors for accessibility are cognitive understanding, optics and blindness, age, mobility, height, acoustics and hearing impairment or deafness, mobility, phobias, orientation and much more. Of course, this also applies to living spaces, housing estates, public squares and parks, museums and exhibitions, schools, event rooms, malls, hospitals and much more.

I hope to have clarified the idea and the background. Design and architecture without this background is not really possible and is hardly welcomed in the current competitions.

Therefore every architecture and design office needs knowledge and empathy to create good solutions.

Current references:

  • Museum Lichtenberg;
  • Senate of Berlin, public park and nature park exhibition;
  • German Museum of Technology, accessible art education,
  • AOK Nordost, accessibility and orientation system in counselling centres and medical centre;
  • Prevention centre VBG BGW Hamburg Accessible guidance and orientation system;

We offer a unique tactile printing technology

Simulation einer Ölgemäldestruktur

Our unrivalled printing technology allows us to produce artwork in full colour range in any tactile structure. It is ideally suited for the presentation of works of art and for tactile graphics.

The final exhibit is hard and therefore has minimal abrasion by touch, and has a high to medium resistance to vandalism. The reproduction is very inexpensive.

We ensure low effort and low cost of production for replacement and exchange in case something has been damaged.

Simulation einer Ölgemäldestruktur
Simulation einer Ölgemäldestruktur
Simulation einer Holzstruktur
Simulation einer Holzstruktur

 


 

Consulting mandate for the new construction of the VBG BGW Prevention Centre in Hamburg

Architektursimulation

(Foto: Auer Weber Assoziierte)

The Ippolito Fleitz Group GmbH Identity Architects commissioned Steffen Zimmermann as a consultant for accessibility for the planning and design of the new centre of excellence in Hafencity of the two associations VBG and BGW

The new centre is to be a beacon project for accessibility and future and trend-setting preventive work.

The Berufsgenossenschaft für Gesundheitsdienst und Wohlfahrtspflege (BGW) and the Verwaltungs-Berufsgenossenschaft (VBG) are the building owners and operators in Hamburg HafenCity. From 2022, they intend to launch new qualification, event and consulting services there, among other things, and make it possible to experience both healthy and safe working in theme worlds. The two associations are two of the largest in Germany.

Inclusion is a priority right from the conceptual approach

The building is to be highly accessible and exemplary in the way that training institutions can be designed to be inclusive. In addition to model workplaces, the planned Prevention Centre will feature theme worlds and exhibitions that make the prevention of occupational accidents, occupational diseases and work-related health hazards tangible. The services will also be available in part to the general public. In addition, individual advice and training for insured persons with work-related health problems is planned. My expertise is particularly evident in the orientation and guidance system as well as in the information services, whether digital, passive or active. This also applies to the revision of the house font for a tactile typeface, which is used in the guidance system as a raised relief font. Furthermore, all elements of the system are equipped with Braille (braille for blind visitors) and high-contrast large print. Orientation in the building and guidance through the building is supported by a floor guidance system. Everything is wheelchair accessible and conveniently accessible for people of all ages.