The archaeological collection of Ayia Irini (Cyprus): A 3D digital approach to analyse and reinterpret a 20th century study

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This paper focuses on the writer’s doctoral research about the development of a 3D digital approach to study, analyse and (re)interpret archaeological collections. 3D documentation, based on the integration of digital technologies, is applied to a group of small terracotta figurines from the Ayia Irini archaeological excavation (Cyprus).
The aim of the research is to enhance the stylistic, typological and technological
study of that material. The Cypriot archaeological site was excavated and studied
at the beginning of the 20th century by a Swedish archaeological mission. After the excavation, the findings were divided and exhibited in Sweden and Cyprus. The aim of the present research is to study the material in a comprehensive way, to understand the production from a technical perspective and to identify modalities of creation, workshop/artisan(s), etc. The use of digital technologies for acquiring data allows one to metrically obtain the geometry, dimensions and texture details of an artefact with millimetre precision. The 3D digital replica of the terracotta statuettes permits one to operate a quantitative and qualitative comparison of the artefacts, even between items physically distant, and to extract their elements and characterizations.
This gives us the possibility to identify various technical features: manufacture,
use of standards, guidelines and rules in the production of the artefacts, as
well as workshop’s methodologies and techniques. The metrical comparison of the statuettes’ geometries further helps to identify the similarities and to draw conclusions about the production of the material. The digital documentation of the Ayia Irini sample is currently under finalisation. Up to this moment a group of fifty-two terracotta figurines were digitally acquired and as many 3D models were realised.
Currently, the study is focusing on the metric analysis and geometrical comparison of the 3D models. Moreover, a semantic and standardised 3D description of the three-dimensional models is being realised.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAncient Cyprus, an Unexpected Journey
Subtitle of host publicationCommunities in Continuity and Transition
EditorsLuca Bombardieri, Marialucia Amadio, Francesca Dolcetti
Place of PublicationRoma
PublisherArtemide Edizioni
Number of pages14
ISBN (Print)9788875752545
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Event15th Meeting of Postgraduate Cypriot Archaeology - University of Turin, Turin, Italy
Duration: 2015 Nov 252015 Nov 27
Conference number: 15


Conference15th Meeting of Postgraduate Cypriot Archaeology
Abbreviated titlePoCA

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Archaeology


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