The ancient city of Palmyra is one of the most beautiful, historical, and archaeologically significant sites on the planet (no seriously, even the history of its excavation is absolutely awesome). And it’s being destroyed right now by the forces of the Islamic State that are currently occupying the region.
Despite promises to the contrary, ISIS has begun randomly blowing up the world’s heritage as they continue their reign of terror in the Middle East.
This week all of us lost the Temple of Ba’al-shamin, one of the city’s most sacred sites to a variant of the region’s most important ancient god. Confirmed pictures of the wanton, tragic destruction are here.
The real version is gone forever—Sadly, before laser scanners could get to it (as far as I know?) to preserve a millimeter accurate digital representation of the temple. Photographs however, can serve in a pinch. And using a combination of structure from motion and straight up modelling, I built a slapdash version of this historical wonder today, so that some version of it can live on in 3D on Thingiverse.
For more on digital heritage, art, archaeology, and everything in between, check out Open Access Antiquarianism. Additional pictures of the modelling are available at there.