More than 75 paintings in the Gallery of the Accademia di Firenze have now undergone the complex and technically sophisticated job of digital acquisition. The project began in August of 2019 in the experimental phase, during the restoration of the triptych of Pentecost by Andrea Orcagna. Now, many other works have been captured digitally, including altarpieces by Pietro Perugino, Bronzino and Allori, works in gold-leaf, plaster statues and last but not least, the unfired clay model of the Rape of the Sabine Women by Giambologna.
Haltaefinizione managed the project in accordance with its contract with Mibact (the Italian Cultural Heritage Ministry) for the promotion and enhancement of the collection. The digital acquisition of each work included specific measures, materials and logistics, which allowed us to capture every kind of surface at any height, no matter its location, surroundings, lighting or material, with excellent results. Gigapixel technology is completely non-invasive. Every aspect of the project is carefully planned to make no physical contact, to avoid any risks to the subject work.
Most notable among the newly digitalized works is the unfired clay model of the Rape of the Sabine Women by Giambologna. This sculpture is remarkable not only for its artistic value for also for its physical size: four meters, and placed on its pedestal, its highest point reaches six meters. More than 59,700 individual images have been captured, for a total of more than 18,000 GB (18 TB) of data. The total surface area of artworks that have been scanned, including paintings and sculptures, is over 310 square meters (3,337 square feet).
This massive digital imaging campaign is done for two reasons. The first is to monitor the conservation status of the works and the other is to allow the general public to have access to the art in completely new ways, such as ultra-high definition images and new technology for long-distance teaching and study, and for virtual visits to the museum.