Paris, April 21st, 2010 – Dassault Systèmes (DS) (Euronext Paris: #13065, DSY.PA), a world leader in 3D software solutions and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA), one of the world's most important encyclopedic art museums, today announced that they will join forces in a strategic innovation partnership to bring the power of industrial and experiential 3D to the domain of archaeology.
The Giza Archives Project is a digital initiative, housed at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. It is supervised by Egyptologist Peter Der Manuelian, the MFA's Giza Archives Director and Philip J. King Professor of Egyptology at Harvard University. The Project aims to “assemble and link” the world’s archaeological information on the Egyptian Pyramids at the Giza Plateau. In the last decade, it has digitized historic expedition photographs, excavation diaries and field notebooks, maps, plans and sketches from the ancient tombs and pyramids at Giza. The result is the largest database and Web site ever assembled relating to the Giza Plateau (www.mfa.org/giza). Most of the archaeological documents and photographs had been assembled over forty years of excavation by Egyptologist George Reisner (1867–1942), one of the prominent founding fathers of modern scientific archaeology who led the Harvard University-Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition in Egypt. In a unique international collaboration, the Giza Archives Project partners today with all of the world's institutions that house major collections related to Giza.
As the worldwide leader in 3D solutions, Dassault Systèmes has revolutionized the 3D software industry and Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) with its software for design, simulation and collaboration in 3D. The company's new challenge is to put its expertise and 3D lifelike experience technologies at the heart of education and research. It brings to the Giza Project its real-time 3D expertise and a complete suite of solutions for simulation and visualization of archaeological data, creating fully immersive interactive experiences for both specialists and the general public. DS and the MFA will imagine new forms of multi-platform experiences, whether individual and collective, through Internet devices or through more complex virtual and augmented reality systems, using game consoles, 3D screens or even movie theaters willing to create new kinds of archeological immersive interactions.
This partnership will enable real-time virtual reconstruction of the Giza plateau based on actual archaeological data. The collaboration between technology and archaeology will result in new forms of scientific inquiry and communication. Virtual archaeology, using the power of scientific simulation tools and 3D immersive experiences, raises new questions, offers new hypotheses and allows us to simulate them in virtual environments. “These tools and approaches offer new dimensions to Egyptological research, allowing for innovation and enhanced knowledge sharing,” said Peter Der Manuelian. “In Dassault Systèmes we found a company partner devoted to both scientific accuracy and technological creativity.”
This partnership is a logical continuation of projects initiated by Dassault Systèmes three years ago around the pyramid of Khufu. "The content of the Giza Archives Project is an important new resource in the field of Egyptology. Peter Der Manuelian follows in the footsteps of George Reisner, contributing daily with his team to ensure the digital preservation of Humanity’s historical heritage," said Mehdi Tayoubi, Interactive Strategy Director at Dassault Systèmes. "We will imagine new forms of interactivity, collaboration and innovation around this data for the worlds of education, research and for the general public thanks to experiential 3D."