Individuals as well as institutions have gradually delivered objects and photos to the museum. In the time before exhibiting, we were actively collecting object within the themes we were including in the exhibition. The majority of the object came from the deaf school in Rødbygget, but some have been collected from other parts of the country. We also have a collection of aids, much of which comes from Vikhov skole for hørselshemmede/school for the hard of hearing. In addition we have a large amount of photos which have been digitalized and made available to the public through Digitalt museum.
The Norwegian Museum of Deaf Culture and History is also a contemporary museum. We have documented the living culture deaf community and the current situation for the deaf, especially concerning the young deaf. The documentation has been done in Trondheim and Oslo, and everything has been filmed using sign language, texting, and audio.
The museum’s underlying theme is sign language and communication. The exhibition is both a concept exhibition and a traditional one with display cases. On the one hand, the museum focuses on understanding, communication and problems leading to reflection and that influences attitudes. On the other hand, this is a museum for the history of the deaf – representing all of Norway. This group would like to see their history depicted in a professional and clear way, as a place to work with memories and strengthening their identity.
The museum has chosen to solve this two-part brief through both traditional museum exhibitions, an activity room – “Rom-X”, and with digital content on touch-screens in the exhibition area. There are individual stories and stories connected to the physical exhibition in glass cases and tableaus. The activity room has its own set up for teaching the hearing about sing language, communication and about respect for differences in our multi-cultural society.
Stories of the Deaf- blind
A separate part of the exhibition is dedicated to the stories of the deaf-blind. It consists of digital stories that can be seen on screens in the museum. In addition, we have made a number tactile elements which convey stories. You can read some of those stories in the collection of articles.
Can you see a language that you can not hear?
Inside Rom X visitors will meet a tour guide using sign language, who guides groups through a journey of visual communication. The room builds a bridge between the hearing and the deaf culture, between spoken language and sign language.