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Visualizing cityscapes of Classical antiquity: from early modern reconstruction drawings to digital 3D models
With a case study from the ancient town of Koroneia in Boeotia, Greece by Chiara Piccoli. Paperback; 203x276mm; xiv+314 pages; illustrated throughout in colour and black & white (100 colour plates). 53 2018. Available both in print and Open Access. Printed ISBN 9781784918897. Epublication ISBN 9781784918903.
Book contents page
The amount of 3D modelling applications in archaeology has increased enormously over the last decade. 3D recording techniques allow researchers to quickly and accurately document archaeological evidence, and 3D reconstructions have created new possibilities to communicate the results to a larger public. In this latter case, however, numerous scholars have expressed their concern regarding the ethics of such digital representations, since they give prominence to a crystallized image of the past and do not account for the complexity of the archaeological record. The study presented here aims to make a practical contribution to a new understanding and use of 3D reconstructions, namely as ‘laboratories’ to test hypotheses and visualize, evaluate and discuss alternative interpretations.

In order to do so, an analysis of visual reconstructions of the early and late modern period is presented first, followed by a discussion of current applications of 3D digital reconstructions, with a special focus on cityscapes. Lastly, a practical implementation of a research-driven, intellectually transparent and GIS-based 3D reconstruction is proposed for the urban site of Koroneia, in Boeotia, Central Greece. Specifically, the methodology developed in this work uses tools that are employed in geo-design and modern urban planning in an innovative way, integrating GIS with a rule-based modelling approach. With a strong focus on the automation and iteration of the reconstruction process, our 3D visualization provides an intuitive insight into hidden relationships and associations among data, and allows the creation and evaluation of alternative reconstruction hypotheses.

About the Author
CHIARA PICCOLI is an Italian archaeologist currently employed as a staff member of the Digital Archaeology Research group at the Faculty of Archaeology in Leiden, The Netherlands. Her expertise lies in the applications of 3D modelling techniques and 2D-3D GIS to visualize and analyse archaeological evidence. Her research interests include urban studies, visual studies, and the exploitation of digital tools and new technologies for documentation, visualization, analysis and dissemination. She has participated in several excavations and surveys in Italy, Greece and Morocco. Chiara holds a BA in Cultural Heritage (University of Trento), an MA in Greek and Roman Archaeology (University of Siena) and an MA in Book and Digital Media Studies (Leiden University). She received the Tiele-Stichting Thesis Prize 2011 for the best MA dissertation in the field of Book History in the Netherlands.


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