2013 - Rediscovering the Cheapside Hoard through Digital Visualization

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2013 - Rediscovering the Cheapside Hoard through Digital Visualization

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The Cheapside Hoard is the greatest cache of Elizabethan and Jacobean jewelry in the world and one of the most remarkable and spectacular finds every recovered from British soil. It is an intriguing time capsule of more than 500 precious artifacts, untouched and of its age, that provides a rare and inspiring window into our craft heritage. This phenomenal resource of early modern goldsmithing embodies the cultural and technological advances of the time. Can we sensitively apply our current digital technology to act as a conduit in bridging 400 years of history to better understand the goldsmithing skills and technology of Elizabethan times? Through this investigation, a range of data collection methods was deployed: craftsmanship observation, laser scanning, digital camera, microscope, CAD and RP. Governed by the perspective of craftsmanship analysis, the raw data was combined and interpreted to generate data montages, creating enhanced, comprehensive, and easily communicated three-dimensional visual narratives. The scenario thus presented leads to recurring questions: How were these artifacts made? What skills and tools did these craftsmen have? How were the raw materials from all over the world turned into the artifacts of the Hoard?

Author(s): Dr. Ann-Marie Carey

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