The exhibits from the Gulag History Museum got their tactile copies

Audio description: photo in color. A hand in close-up. The fingers touch a tactile copy of a postcard with a picture of Solovetsky Monastery on it. The copy is fixed on black pedestal.

Five objects from the Gulag History Museum’s collection have got their tactile copies.

In particular, the exposition currently contains adapted models of the sculpture “Thank you, comrade Stalin, for our happy childhood” by G.D. Lavrov, the book by the Karlag’s prisoner Olga Ranitskaya, the letter on the postcard depicting Solovetsky Monastery.

It was possible to produce these exhibits’ copies thanks to the fact that the Gular History Museum won the competition “Creation of copies of museum exhibits” in the “Special View” program, organized by “Art, Science and Sport” charity foundation.

“One of the objects chosen for tactile models is the postcard, which was sent from Solovetskiy Special Purpose Camp by the imprisoned Archpriest Alexander Chernoutsan to his son. This tactile model shows how multilayered our topic is: with it you can talk about the formation of the camp system in USSR, how Solovetskiy camp was organized, the fates of the prisoners, as well as camp correspondence, which played a special role in the prisoners’ lives”, mentions Anna Stadinchuk, the acting Director of the museum.

The models were produced in Mikhail and Olga Shu’s studio of tactile models.

“We believe it is crucial to help the museum institutions to become accessible for people with visual impairment, and grants from ‘Special View’ serve as enabler to launch systematic work in this direction. Besides, not only visually impaired visitors will appreciate such tactile exhibits, but as well everybody else, as they will get the unique opportunity to literally touch the history”, tells Vladimir Plehov, the acting Head of “Special View” program.

The Gulag History Museum will provide excursions with audio descriptions for sightless and visually impaired guests. According to Anna Stadinchuk, the tour guides have already gone through corresponding trainings. “With these tactile models the excursions will become more solid”, Anna highlights.

You can sign up for the guided tour via telephone +7 926 430 95 02 and inclusive department e-mail

The Gular History Museum became one of the winners of the grant competition to create tactile copies of the exhibits, which took place in the end of 2021.

Previously, the Perm Art Gallery received tactile copies of the paintings of Russian artists, and Orenburg Governor’s Regional Museum made its collection of Sarmatian Gold accessible for sightless and visually impaired visitors.

Both institutions got the replicas of the objects from their collections after winning the competition “Creation of copies of museum exhibits” in the “Special View” program by “Art, Science and Sport” foundation.