Lab Projects

Digital Documentation of Archaeological Underground Landscapes in Sicily

In Summer 2019, Access 3D Lab is partnering with Dr. Davide Tanasi (Institute for Digital Exploration and USF Department of History) to carry out the 3D scanning of two prehistoric caves in Sicily: the Early Bronze Age cave complex of Immacolatella-Micio Conti in Catania in partnership with Centro Universitario per la Tutela e la Gestione degli Ambienti Naturali e degli Agro-sistemi (Cutgana), and the Paleolihic cave of Cala dei Genovesi on the island of Levanzo at Trapani. Both caves will be 3D scanned for metrological reasons and to create a digital system of reference to monitor their condition in the future.

Immacolatelle and Micio Conti cave complex

The Immacolatelle and Micio Conti Cave Complex.

The complex Immacolatelle and Micio Conti is a 25 hectares system of nine volcanic caves produced by a series of collapses along the same lava tube. A lava tube is a kind of “conduit” that quickly channels the lava from the main vent to the furthest parts of a lava field, which undergoes a partial or total drainage. The complex of caves was largely occupied during the Early Bronze Age (2400-1550 BCE) for various activities from collection of dripping water to votive depositions. A significant quantity of artifacts never recorded before are still on site. Main goal of the virtualizaton project will be to produced a more accurate technical documentation of this environment in order to monitor it and to generated a virtual model for public engagement of of hardly accessible site.

Cave of Cala dei Genovesi on the island of Levanzo

The Cave of Cala dei Genovesi on the island of Levanzo, Sicily.

The Cave of Cala dei Genovesi on the island of Levanzo, off the western coast of Sicily, is one of the most important Paleolithic sites in Italy, with incredible examples of painted and engraved rock art. Discovered in 1949, it shows evidence of occupation ranging between 10,000 and 6,000 BC. The palimpsest of animal and human figures decorating the wall are a rare photograph of life in Upper Prehistory. Due to concerns about the conditions of the rock art, the Sicilian government plans to close indefinitely the cave to the public. The project aims to create virtual replica of the complex for a local museum installation.