A replica of the Syrian monument, 2,000 years old built with 3D technology
Last year, the Islamic State destroyed the Arc de Triomphe in the Syrian city of Palmyra. It was a monument 2,000 years old, declared a World Heritage Which is indeed a great loss.
Since the 19th of April, in Trafalgar Square in central London, a replica of this iconic monument is exposed. Built in Egyptian marble by the Institute of Digital Archaeology (IDA, its acronym in English) using technology 3D based on photographs of the original arc.
The director of antiquities of Syria described the event as a "solidarity action".
After London, where it will be on display for three days, it will be taken on tour in different cities like New York and Dubai. Roger Michel, executive director of IDA, says that "their final destination will be Palmira, where it will be permanently installed near the original arc".
The director of antiquities of Syria, Maamoun Abdulkarim said that "it is a message to raise awareness in the world", "We have a common heritage. Our heritage is universal, not only the Syrian people". It stresses that "the purpose of this project is the restoration, using new technologies and the remains of the site to rebuild the ancient monuments, rather than creating new ones."
"We can never have the same image that was before ISIS" Abdulkarim said. "We try to be realistic. But we seek to respect the scientific method and the identity of Palmira as a historical site."
When Palmira was attacked, Roger Michel decided to launch the IDA´s database project "One Million Pictures" distributing 3D cameras worldwide.
Roger Michel wanted the replica, 5'5 meters tall, made with machines that carved the marble with a drill programmed with 3D images of the arc, was exposed in London in the first place because the city itself was rebuilt after the Second World war and hoped that "anyone who respects freedom of expression" understood the importance of recreating the arc. Their intent is to restore the monuments "promptly" and "consciousness" not to give extremists "the power to erase these objects of our collective cultural archive".