We’ll be updating this entire site in 1997, putting in our virtual museum halls and exhibits (we hope to be able to post several thousand virtual exhibits ithis year) and we think you’ll be excited and amazed at what we’ve dug up! (archaeological humor) We’re building installations at lightning speed; it’s our dream to build a website museum that any child anywhere in the world can visit for the price of a local phone call; as I said, we’re going as fast as we can, but please remember, we’re all volunteers here and many of us are working mummies, moonlighting a second job just to make ends meet. We’ve even had to rent out the King’s Chamber on weekends to cyberparties…what has this world gotten to? We hope that you’ll enjoy every visit here; wander the halls freely, and dream with us of the day that we’ll be able to offer our 3-D museum gaming levels in Realtime directly on the Web. It might happen tomorrow! Don’t forget to visit us often, and please, please let us know how you loved our museum site!
The Museum of Ancient and Modern Art is a 501(c) (3) corporation organized and operated exclusively for charitable purposes established under the California Nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation Law for public and charitable purposes.
The public and charitable purposes of the corporation are: To present to the community for the public benefit exhibits demonstrating the close artistic connection between ancient and modern life demonstrating that when seen in context the aesthetic values remain constant although technologies may change; To incorporate in the museum’s collection and exhibits material relevant to the impact of ancient civilizations upon the modern; To actively preserve, protect, conserve and shelter art and artifacts for future generations giving archaeological evidence of the nature and quality of life in ancient and modern civilizations; To prepare and present to the public programs operated not for profit of an educational nature on the museum’s collection and exhibits; To encourage the active use and availability of the collections and exhibits for research purposes by qualified individuals; To participate in and/or sponsor archaeological excavations and expeditions in search of evidence which documents the quality of life in ancient and modern civilizations.In Quake it is possible to recreate dynamic exhibits of martial conflicts both modern and ancient. This much is obvious and does represent a goodly portion of the museums cybernet collection.
Extending this technology further it is very possible to recreate ancient sets and settings that would otherwise be lost to us. Once again it may be possible to walk the streets of ancient Egypt. In cyberspace we are able to extend ourselves into the environment using the player-point-of-view developed originally for 3D gaming.
This extension of the museum goer into an archeological site through the use of 3D interaction is at the very heart of this Hall. For this purpose M.A.M.A. will rely principally on the two differently-abled 3D viewing engines: Quake and G.O.D.D.TM. Each has its advantages and limitations. Between the two everything other than smell can currently be recreated — and we anticipate that will be available before long.
No longer is it necessary for the exhibit viewer to gaze docilely at flat renditions of architectural plans drawn from excavations. Now it is possible to walk in, around and through an excavation viewing the exhibit from unguessed-at perspectives.
Many physical sites are crumbling beneath our collective cultural feet never to be seen by future generations. We know beyond a shadow of doubt if future generations are ever to view the King’s Chamber in the Pyramid at Giza it will be in cyberspace. Why wait for that undefined future? It is within our grasp today. Using the tools of 3D Gaming this exhibit is a reality.
Not only will the museum be able to prepare and present to the public programs of an educational nature on the museum’s collection and exhibits — the museum will be finally able to deliver those programs to any child throughout the world for the price of a local phone call.
Using 3D technology, the catalogs and exhibit cases will no longer be locked by geography to all but a handful of individuals living within commuting distance to the museum. Now it is possible to encourage the active use and availability of the collections and exhibits for research purposes by qualified individuals around the world.
Now we can explore the quality of life in ancient and modern civilizations through the creation of virtual communities that can recreate the environs of any designated culture.
We expect this project to be extensive and consuming of person hours beyond the capability of any one institution to absorb. This is where the profound attitude of cooperation and sharing that is a cornerstone of the Internet gaming community will be of value. There are literally hundreds of maps floating about the Internet representing thousands of development hours by hundreds of volunteers. It is the intention of the Museum of Ancient and Modern Art to direct a small but enthusiastic portion of this resource into the recreation of ancient settings.
To this aim we are soliciting donations of the following gaming memorabilia to chronicle the creation and development of the 3D tools used in the project.
- Archived copies of early demos from all the significant gaming engines.
- Screen shots from developing models and textures.
- Specifications of early hardware used in the production.
- Maps of archeological sites.
- Maps recreating the various type of ancient arena games.
- Models of ancient armor and weaponry.
- Exhibit hall catalogs built in 3D format.
- Search directories interfaced by walk-throughs.
- Interactive Docent-Exhibit Viewer dialogs using online chat systems.
“Stonehenge is surely Britain’s greatest national icon, symbolizing mystery, power and endurance. Its original purpose is unclear to us, but some have speculated that it was a temple made for the worship of ancient earth deities. It has been called an astronomical observatory for marking significant events on the prehistoric calendar. Others claim that it was a sacred site for the burial of high-ranking citizens from the societies of long ago. In its day, the construction of Stonehenge was an impressive engineering feat, requiring commitment, time and vast amounts of manual labor. In its first phase, Stonehenge was a large earthwork; a bank and ditch arrangement called a henge, constructed approximately 5,000 years ago. It is believed that the ditch was dug with tools made from the antlers of red deer and, possibly, wood. The underlying chalk was loosened with picks and shoveled with the shoulderblades of cattle. It was then loaded into baskets and carried away. Modern experiments have shown that these tools were more than equal to the great task of earth digging and moving.” — Britannia Internet Magazine
This project under development by Bob Kirkland and Claude Needham of the ancient Druidic site of Stonehenge is being reconstructed in both its idealized nondecayed state as well as in its semi-collapsed state.
Maze at Hampton Court
“The Maze at Hampton Court, the royal palace on the Thames to the west of London, is probably the most famous hedge maze in the world. It was planted as part of the gardens laid out for William of Orange between 1689 and 1695 by George London and Henry Wise. It was described with great wit in Jerome K. Jerome’s novel ‘Three Men in a Boat.’ Hampton Court Maze continues to attract hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.“ — “Secrets of the Maze” by Adrian Fisher and Howard Loxton
Map designer Bob Kirkland loves mazes of all types. This is sure to be just the first of a whole series of historical mazes.
The Library Maze
“The library is constructed according to a celestial harmony to which various and wonderful meanings can be attributed….” “A splendid discovery,” I said, “but why is it so difficult to get our bearings?” “Because what does not correspond to any mathematical law is the arrangement of the openings. Some rooms allow you to pass into several others, some into only one, and we must ask ourselves whether there are not rooms that do not allow you to go anywhere else…. The maximum of confusion achieved with the maximum of order: it seems a sublime calculation. The builders of the library were great masters.” — Brother William of Baskerville, explaining the mystery to his young scribe (and narrator of the story) Adso of Melk
Map maker Bob Kirkland loves of mazes is exemplified in this recreation of the Library Maze from Umberto Eco’s novel “The Name of the Rose”. The design is taken from the description of the library maze in Umberto Eco’s first novel “The Name of the Rose” published in 1980. The story takes place in a Franciscan abbey in northern Italy, in the year 1327. In the heart of the abbey lies its extensive library, which, in the words of one abbey resident, is designed as “a great labyrinth, sign of the labyrinth of the world. You enter and you do not know whether you will come out.
VRML Temples of Amarna
In this project supervised by Tim Elston the Temples at Amarna are being translated first into VRML then into BSP Game compatible maps. This project is well underway and we hope to have a sample of the VRML available within days or weeks. This temple was originally built from a ground plan of the original site of the main temple at Amarna, Egypt in Lightwave 3D and has just recently been translated to VRML 2.0. Textures will be applied to the model approximating as closely as possible the original textures of the temple in ancient times. Plans are to continue to flesh out the whole ancient city of Amarna.
M.A.M.A. Museum of 3D Gaming — Hall of Gladiators
The Gladiators have traditionally been the best of the best selected by attrition in the arena. “Only the strong survive.” “If it doesn’t kill you, it makes you stronger.” “Don’t spit in the general direction of the Emperor,” These and other adages helped the ancient gladiator survive their ordeal in the arena thereby earning a place for themselves in the Gladiator’s Hall.
We are not so structured. The losers don’t go out in a leather body bag. And the winners can go home without the stench of blood soaked into their clothes. And yet, they are still able to earn an immemorial place in history. Isn’t cyberspace grand?