Project Overview 🏛️
The 'Battle' plaster casts at the Blanton Museum of Art are the subject of a digital humanities project at The University of Texas at Austin. It is my responsibility to design a proof-of-concept interface for the project.
The Battle Cast Collection is a collection of plaster casts of Greco-Roman sculpture and architecture at the Blanton Museum of Art from the University of Texas at Austin.
A digital map of the making of the collection in the 19th and early 20th centuries will help users to analyze the evolution of replicas and copies in museums. Through this Battle cast project, 3D scans and models of the Blanton’s collection will be made available to the broader public. This project is currently undergoing review for a digital humanities grant.
The following screens are my final proof-of-concept designs for the digital humanities project.
Final Designs 🎨
The Map tab showcases the lifespan of individual casts within the collection. I broke these points on a map down to the original statue's findspot, the casting company responsible for the final cast, and any museum in which the cast was held.
Selecting an individual cast from the digital "gallery" highlights that cast's journey to where it is now. Additional information such as relevant history and a link to the 3D model is given.
This is the 3D cast showroom. Here you can interact with the 3D model and explore suggested models. These models were created by us using the archeological method of "photogrammetry" while under the supervision of the museum's directors.
Under the 'Create' tab, users are prompted to create and export an original work of art inspired by these casts. This aspect of the interface was created for the purpose of allowing for interactive participation as a pedagogical and research tool.
These public made creations are then published and displayed under the 'Uploads' tab. Professional artists and their comments are also featured in this section. One such artist is Lily Cox-Richards. We consulted Lily during our creation of this project to gain an artistic perspective.
TITLE OF THE CALLOUT BLOCK
Lessons Learned 🏺
Digital Humanities projects combine my two loves - design and museums.
This project is a part of ongoing discussions regarding museum collecting, the history of plaster cast collections as an educational tool, and questions of authenticity in art objects.
Presently, the team is applying for a Humanities Texas Major Media Grant for the 2020-2021 grant period. This funding would allow us to bring this project to completion, ready for access by students and scholars of Classics, Art History, and Museum Studies.