Digital Things: Capturing and Creating (in 3D) for Heritage and Archaeology

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A workshop at the Research Hub inspired a 3D digital exhibit for the Research Laboratories of Archeology.

The Research Laboratories of Archaeology (RLA) is home to the North Carolina Archaeological Collection. Like many curators of antiquity, they are increasingly involved in digital projects and looking for ways to engage the public online. But how? A workshop at the Davis Library Research Hub provided the answer.

The workshop featured speaker Dr. Rachel Opitz from the University of Arkansas. Her talk highlighted examples of the successful use of 3D models of heritage objects in virtual exhibits and collections, provided an overview of key efforts to help organizations start working in this area, and reflected on the main challenges for institutions as they begin digital heritage projects. It was during this workshop that the idea for the RLA 3D collection was born.

The RLA collection now features more than 350 artifacts and continues to grow. The models will soon be deployed in a virtual museum called “Ancient Carolinians,” currently under construction.