Building a digital model of Michelangelo's Florentine Pieta

TitleBuilding a digital model of Michelangelo's Florentine Pieta
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2002
AuthorsBernardini, F., H. Rushmeier, I. M. Martin, J. Mittleman, and G. Taubin
JournalComputer Graphics and Applications, IEEE
Keywords3D model 3D scanning 3D visualization art art history computer graphics computer model cultural heritage Florentine Pieta image processing Michelangelo scanning technology

We present the methodology we used to acquire the data and construct a computer model of Michelangelo's Florentine Pieta with enough detail and accuracy to make it useful in scientific studies. We describe the project to acquire and build the 3D model. The work we describe is unique in that an art historian, not a technologist, conceived and specified the project. Our goal wasn't simply to produce the statue's model but also to provide the art historian with material and tools to enable him to answer his own research questions. The project gave us the opportunity to explore the value of 3D scanning and visualization in a nontechnical discipline, art history. The project's second goal was to develop scanning technology accessible to other cultural heritage projects both in terms of cost and usability