Virtual Schönbrunn (VR Arena)
Horst Hörtner (AT)
Florian Berger (AT)
Friedrich Kirschner (DE)
Martin Bruner (AT)
Stefan Feldler (AT)
Erwin Reitböck (AT)
Christine Pilsl (AT)
Schloss Schönbrunn Kultur- und Betriebsges.m.b.H. (AT)
Schönbrunn Palace, famed summer residence of Austrian rulers in days of yore and now a must-see tourist attraction in Vienna, is the centerpiece of an Ars Electronica Futurelab pilot project. Some of the palace’s magnificent rooms have been converted into their virtual equivalents via state-of-the-art visualization.
According to legend, 18th-century Austrian Empress Maria Theresia had priceless miniatures depicting the lives of the Mogul rulers of 16th- and 17th-century India shipped to Vienna from Constantinople. Today, set in gilt frames amidst precious rosewood paneling, they adorn the walls of the so-called Million Room.
These three rooms are named after prominent Baroque painter Josef Rosa. The walls are hung with paintings depicting idyllic landscapes in Northern Italy and Switzerland as well as river valleys and mountainous regions.
The Ceremonial Hall is decorated with paintings commissioned by Maria Theresia that portray scenes from the wedding of her son and heir Joseph II to Isabella of Parma.
The use of ultra-high-definition digital technologies ranging from laser point measurement to meticulously produced photographic material make these incredibly detailed visualizations possible. Visitors can examine the Million Room’s miniatures right up close in larger-than-life-size, take in a view of the Habichtsburg, the Habsburg family seat, in the Rosa Room, and experience scenes from an 18th-century royal wedding in the Ceremonial Hall.
For the graphic depictions, FutureLab staffers developed highly advanced 3D software and utilized the latest techniques in the field of real-time computer graphics like Pixelshader. The resulting reproductions of the great artistry and craftsmanship exhibited by the superb décor of these rooms are accurate down to the finest detail and represent a world-class achievement in the field of computer visualization. In addition to opening up new approaches to the digital conservation of irreplaceable cultural treasures, this method of 3D simulation also provides the Schönbrunn Palace Society with an interesting and effective means of international promotion.
Special thanks to: Jürgen Hagler, Werner Pötzelberger