The Future of the Virtual Past
Over the past decades, the ever-more accessible scanning, modelling, and mapping tools are transforming research into historic built environments and the documentation of cultural heritage. Such tools are facilitating a richer understanding of the spatial relationships between artworks, buildings and urban contexts, and a substantial reassessment of diachronic change at different spatial scales. Yet fragmentation across the research community, especially in the choice of digital methodologies and data architecture, risks preventing or diluting the paradigm shifts promised by pilot projects.
The need for shared standards in the visualization of cultural heritage has long been recognized – notably through the London Charter (2006) and Seville Principles (2011) – but practice remains diverse. At the same time, data ontologies like CIDOC-CRM suggest new standards for underpinning data architecture. Emerging tools such as Historical BIM and prototype IIIF-3D viewers offer new methodologies for the viewing and annotation of 3D models. This workshop brings together leading projects in the field from the UK and German research areas, together with other specialists from the US and Europe, to achieve a critical mass amongst modelling and mapping projects focused on Medieval and Early Modern Europe.
Among the issues we will address are the visualization of incomplete or uncertain data; the understanding of lost architectural structures and their function; current approaches to the integration of 2D geo-data and 3D visualization; differing demands of research, cultural heritage, industry and documentation; the pros and cons of uniformity versus diversity in standards; and issues of accessibility, equity, and open access and participation.