ECNS: China’s famous Terracotta Army gets digital boost. “China’s world famous Terracotta Army attraction has been given a digital boost thanks to the Chinese web-based encyclopedia Baidu Baike, in partnership with the Emperor Qinshihuang’s Mausoleum Site Museum. Together they’ve created a large-scale, high definition ‘digital museum’ for the country’s UNESCO World Heritage site, reports China News Service.”
Stanford: Digital archive of antique wax figures becomes a teaching tool. “Huddled over a virtual dissection table, Stanford medical students zoomed in on glistening muscles and nerves in the neck by swiping their fingers across the giant touchscreen designed to visualize an entire body in three dimensions. What they were looking at, however, were not virtual renderings of human anatomy, or even images of the real thing; rather, they were examining high-resolution photographs of wax models made between the mid-17th and mid-19th centuries.” Warning: these wax models could be deeply disturbing.
The latest victim of arbitrary Facebook censorship is a nude Renaissance statue of Neptune and his nude Renaissance junk. “A virile, muscled statue of the sea god Neptune has fallen foul of Facebook’s prudish policies on nudity after an Italian art historian was told to remove it from her web page. The sixteenth century Renaissance statue dominates Piazza del Nettuno, a grand square in the heart of Bologna.”
The Monumental Archive Project has officially launched. “The Monumental Archive Project was established to act as an open platform for historic cemeteries research to address issues of accessibility and sustainability, whilst also stimulating creativity and collaboration. It has been a year in the making and is still in the beginning stages. It is being launched with one collection of more than 20 locations in Barbados, with more than 2000 monuments. From here, it is hoped that the collection will grow, and that users will also share their results, their tips, their ideas.”
A town in Texas has immortalized the “selfie” in a statue.
In development: a massive digital archive of 3D-scanned Greek and Roman sculpture. “The project between the Uffizi, one of the oldest and most renowned art museums in the world, and IU’s Virtual World Heritage Laboratory will create high-resolution 3-D digital models of the Uffizi sculptures and make them freely available online by IU’s bicentennial in 2020. The Uffizi collection is located at the gallery as well as the Pitti Palace and Boboli Gardens, other famous cultural sites in Florence. The 1,250 works of art comprise the third largest collection of its kind in an Italian state museum. Largely assembled by the Medici family from the 15th to the 18th centuries, the sculptures include some of the most admired classical antiquities in the history of art, notably the Medici Venus, the Medici Faun, the Niobids and the Ariadne.”
There is now an open access archive for the sculptor Bertel Thorvaldsen (at the Thorvaldsen Museum, natch.) “Apart from letters and workshop accounts, the site also includes poems, articles on Thorvaldsen, lists of artworks, notes, travel permits, recommendations, dedications in books, memos, and many other types of written sources on the sculptor’s life and art.”