Shaping the home for Gabrieli and Vivaldi

Motivated to re-create the magnificence of the basilica of San Marco from the late seventeenth-century, we have started our project by constructing a 3D model of the place. After having a discussion with our supervisor with regards to what software we should use for that purpose, we have chosen to go with SketchUp. The application is available for free and provides us with all necessary features for building a 3D model of the basilica of San Marco.

Our first idea was to build that model relying on photos and paintings but we soon realized that we need much more precise understanding of the architecture of the building. Therefore, we have found and used floor plan and sections of the basilica, which enable us to master the details of the place. It turned out that managing the particularly rich and ornamented façade as well as the roof of the building is not such an easy task because of the lack of sections plans on each specific part. We have found a number of images as well as other SketchUp models of the outside architecture of the basilica, which currently give us an overview of the details of the place and help us to get to know them better and be able to re-create the parts of the missing sections.

Up to now we have achieved to construct the first level of the building as well as some parts of the roof mainly the domes in the back.

3D sample of the front of the basilica of San Marco
3D sample of the front of the basilica of San Marco
3D sample of the back of the basilica of San Marco
3D sample of the back of the basilica of San Marco

Previously we had the idea of superimposing images and paintings onto our 3D model of the basilica. However, regarding the exterior of the building, our main concern is that we will not be able to create a texture of photos as most of the online images, taken by visitors, have different lights. This could hinder the process of overlaying them onto the 3D model. Another issue that we are encountering at the moment is about the front façade of the basilica with its very opulent architectural decoration. Having those difficulties with both the construction and the texture of the outside representation of the building, we would like to re-focus our vision of the model and to concentrate on the interior of the basilica. The main goal of our project is to simulate and re-create the atmosphere of ceremonial performances and for that reason the inside part of the place is much more important for our final intention. Therefore, we are currently taking the direction of building the interior of the basilica of San Marco.

Similarly, we encounter the same problem about the superimposing of images inside the 3D model. After discussing with our supervisor, we have chosen to put that approach aside for now and first try to use lights with regard to the interior of the basilica instead of material. The only thing we want to keep is the representation of the floor tiles since we have succeeded to find a number of images.

In the following weeks, we will focus on completing a 3D model, representing the internal part of the basilica, and start our research about musicians, orchestra and ceremonial performances at San Marco. This will help us to better understand which places inside the building are essential for the ceremonies. Thus, we will be able to focus our attention on re-creating those particular places in more details. After completing this task, we will explore different software techniques for audio and acoustic representation.