Year: 2014

Authors: Balleri R., Di Tondo S., Adembri G., and Gherardelli M.

Autors Affiliation: Department of Information Engineering (DINFO), University of Florence, Via S. Marta, 3, 50100 Florence, Italy
Department of Architecture (DIDA), University of Florence, Piazza Ghiberti, 27, 50100 Florence, Italy
ICON Foundation, Via Madonna del Piano 6, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino, Florence, Italy

Abstract: This paper illustrates the use of three-dimensional (3D) laser scanning to produce virtual models from plaster piece molds of the Richard-Ginori porcelain factory (Sesto Fiorentino, Italy). This study was carried out as part of a longterm project to document the artifacts of the factory including porcelain sculpture, models in wax, terracotta, and plaster, as well a collection of several thousand plaster piece molds dating from the mid-18th to the early 20th century. The objects contained inside the molds are often not recognizable as the molds are made up of several pieces and the internal surfaces are, of course, in negative. Previously, the identification of the molds’ subject matter has been limited to recasting porcelainmodels to produce positives. This time-consuming process can compromise the preservation of the molds. Virtual reconstruction using 3Dlaser scanning was applied to a set of plaster molds for a statuette called theGiant.Comparison of the virtual reproduction to the originalmodel in terracotta demonstrated it was a faithful copy. The method described in this paper proves that identification of the subject and preservation of the molds are possible with numerous benefits over the traditional process for producing finished porcelain artifacts.


Volume: 53 issue 3      Pages from: 145  to: 158

KeyWords: 3D laser scanning, virtual model, plaster molds, artistic porcelain, Richard-Ginori factory
DOI: 10.1179/1945233014y.0000000023