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Digitizing Visual Memories in Architecture and Cityscapes

The 4D Research Lab facilitates researchers from different disciplines in the Humanities who have specific spatial and architectural i.e. three dimensional questions that cannot be answered with traditional methods, nor have the knowledge of 3D modeling programs and computing facilities. The Lab offers these computers and computational specialists to support the analysis of transformations in the built environment. The 4D Research Lab has 3D scanner, drones and specialized software and hardware at its disposal.

Reconstruction of the office interior of Pompejus Occo, a prominent citizen in the 16th century Amsterdam
Reconstruction of the office interior of Pompejus Occo, a prominent citizen in 16th century Amsterdam.

3D modeling an innovative tool

3D Modeling is increasingly becoming an essential research tool. The usage of 3D reconstructions during the research into built environments offers new insights and a new approach for analyzing data. The many perspectives on the actual building itself, i.e. the spatial context, and the possibility of visualizing the architectural phases through time (the ‘4D’ element), makes 3D modeling an innovative tool for the specialist. The path that leads to the final reconstruction of the building is documented and this documentation generates a vast amount of new data otherwise never encountered. 3D Reconstructions offer a virtual world where various kinds of experiments can be conducted by scientist form the Humanities. In addition, this technology contributes to present the new knowledge to a wider public in the form of websites, virtual and augmented reality worlds and applications.

3D scanned antefix from acquarossa, Italy
3D scanned antefix from acquarossa, Italy


The 4D Research Lab supports and trains Bachelor and Master students (theses and tutorials) from all the Humanities who need 3D models to support their research. They can either learn 3D modeling at the 4D Research Lab and/or use one of the computers. One of the 3D specialists can assist in the modeling. For further questions contact Tijm Lanjouw via t.j.r.lanjouw@uva.nl.

More information

Dr. J. (Jitte) Waagen

Coordinator 4D Research Lab