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and applying new technologies in Japan,
Spain and the UK.
WHY USE DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY?
T
raditional moulding and casting
techniques can produce very rea-
listic effects but require full phy-
sical contact with the original which can
result in damage to the surface. An alterna-
tive method would be to copy the object
by hand in similar materials. Again, the
results can be very realistic, but making a
copy by hand is a subjective process
dependent on the skill of the artist.The
digital techniques used by Factum Arte are
not only objective, but are also highly
accurate. Digital scanning is a fast and effi-
cient way to record an object without
requiring any physical contact.This work
requires a new understanding of the ways
in which information is mediated.The aim
is to produce a physical object that retains
as many of the characteristics of the origi-
nal as possible and which under museum
conditions looks physically identical to the
original. Using a variety of techniques,
Factum Arte has already successfully com-
pleted a digital replica of a section of the
burial chamber of the tomb of Seti I
which was exhibited at the MARQ in
Madrid.The impressive realism of the
replica was achieved by scanning the surfa-
ce of the tomb at an unmeshed resolution
of a tenth of a millimetre ­ a resolution
that had never before been accomplished
in practice on this scale. Sixteen months of
research were then spent perfecting all the
stages from the acquisition of digital data
to the finishing of the printed colour gesso
low relief surface.
DigiCULT
.
Info
5
the replica will be included in the exhibi-
tion along with photographs, a film and
3D animations of the digital data. Copies
of the digital data itself were presented to
the Museo Arqueológico Nacional as valu-
able digital archives to aid all future study
of the Dama de Elche.
T
he adaptation of digital technolo-
gy to document and replicate
heritage raises unique challenges
that require skills and knowledge from a
wide range of disciplines, and involves the
adaptation of industrial fabrication techni-
ques, software writing and conservation
skills. Factum Arte is a company at the
forefront of the use of digital technology
in this way. In the two years since Factum
Arte was established it has developed a
unique working method, analysing the
specific needs of each project and develo-
ping the hardware and software required
whenever they are not commercially avai-
lable. Factum Arte has also established a
network of contacts with universities and
research centres in Europe and has close
links with companies that are developing
I
n November 2002, Factum Arte
(http://www.factum-arte.com/) was
approached by the Diputación Provin-
cial de Alicante (Provincial Delegation of
Alicante) to make a high resolution replica
of the Dama de Elche, an Iberian sculpture
believed to date back to the fourth century
BC.Work on the production of the replica
began in February 2003 and was completed
by the middle of May.The resulting copy
of the sculpture will be the centrepiece of
an exhibition at the MARQ Archaeological
Museum, Alicante
(http://www.marqalicante.com/), descri-
bing the technology and processes involved
in its production.With the full support of
Museo Arqueológico Nacional de Madrid
(http://www.man.es/), where the sculpture
is on permanent display, Factum Arte car-
ried out digital 3D documentation of the
statue.The digital data was then used to
produce a full-scale replica of the sculpture
using pulverised limestone from quarries
local to Elche.The tests, samples and docu-
mentation relating to the production of
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The original Dama de Elche, limestone with traces of pigment, circa 4th
Century BC, 56 x 52.5 x 34 cm. Museo Arqueológico Nacional, Madrid.
The ModelMaker Scanner recording the surface of The Dama de Elche in
the Museo Arqueológico Nacional, Madrid.
© Factum
Ar
te
,
2004,
www
.f
actum-ar
te
.com
© Factum
Ar
te
,
2004,
www
.f
actum-ar
te
.com