Chasing Future Feelings: a practice-led experiment with emergent digital materialities of heritage

Tracy Ireland, Tessa Bell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
182 Downloads (Pure)


High-fidelity imaging methods such as laser scanning and digital photogrammetry
have captured public and professional audiences in a flurry of optimistic discourse
about their capacities as forms of preservation and of archaeological recording
and interpretation. With technical finesse and mastery, endangered heritage
can, it is argued, be captured, re-materialized, and recovered from the forces
that threaten it. As the plot concerning our ‘digital futures’ thickens, we discuss
here an experimental project that offers an oblique approach to the practice
of 3D visualization, one that subverts the dominance of neutral, technical field
engagements. We examine digital materiality by exploring digital heritage
objects as both method and site of ethnographic encounter. Orbiting the ruins
of Asinou, an abandoned village in the Troodos Mountains of Cyprus, with our
‘low-tech’ equipment, we sought to observe the conditions of the ‘in-between’
of two makeshift forms, each as ‘real’ as the other. We focus our thinking on the
tensions of translation that play on the surface of our technically crude digital
assemblages, as spaces of generative potential for speculations about encounters
with emerging digital materialities, their affective capacities and status as future
heritage objects.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-165
Number of pages17
JournalMuseum and Society
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jul 2021


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