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News: Notre-Dame de Paris: Augmented reality powers new immersive exhibition at the National Building Museum

Ahead of the third anniversary of Notre-Dame de Paris’ devastating April 2019 fire,  the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. has announced a new 360-degree augmented reality-powered exhibition focusing on the famed cathedral’s restoration and 850-plus years of history.

Developed by the French startup Histovery and legacy brand L’Oréal, the traveling exhibition Notre-Dame de Paris: The Augmented Exhibition offers visitors an immersive experience into the building’s early construction in the last decades of the 12th century, the coronation of Napoleon I in 1804, and the day of the fire itself among other significant points on its long timeline using a special hand-held “HistoPad” as a guide.

Notre-Dame Cathedral on the day of the April 15, 2019 blaze. Image: Wikimedia Commons user Marind.

Users of the device can choose their own experience enhanced by vinyl flooring replicas, stained-glass window transfers, audio taken from inside the cathedral as well as a projection of the famed rose window that miraculously managed to survive the fire

This is the museum’s first experimentation with the type of exhibitions that has engendered a good bit of curiosity (and even some parody) on their tours through Chicago, Hong Kong, and other global cultural hotspots. 

Notre-Dame’s western rose window. Image: Gigascope.

“The National Building Museum is the perfect venue for this exhibition to debut in the U.S.,” said Histovery co-founder and CEO Bruno de Sa Moreira. “The Museum was established to preserve and celebrate the building arts and its mission is to inspire curiosity about the world we design and build.” 

This represents the first time the show has traveled to North America after debuting in Europe last year. 

Notre-Dame de Paris opens its doors to the public on April 15th and will run until the 26th of September.

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