Engaging Community in Ancient Sculpture Research and Preservation: Digitizing the Collection amidst Local Communities in Central Java

Atina Winaya1, Brahmantara2, Andreas Satria Wibowo3, Titi Surti Nastiti1, Agustijanto Indradjaja1, Ashar Murdihastomo1, Dimas Seno Bismoko1, Panji Syofiadisna1, Indah Permatasarie Tjan1, Rangga Dipta Azhari1, Rama Putra Siswantara1

1The Research Organization for Archaeology, Language, and Literature, Indonesia

2The Agency for Borobudur Conservation, Indonesia

3The Research Organization for Earth and Marine, Indonesia

Technological advances in archaeology are improving for both research and preservation purposes. One of the methods is documentation using close-range photogrammetry to produce digital data in 3D form. Digital data benefits the research by broadening perspectives in analysis and interpretation, preserving tangible heritage by increasing documentation quality and providing material reconstructions. In Indonesia, digital documentation of ancient sculptures is still limited, usually only undertaken on those artifacts held in museum collections. This project attempts to digitize ancient sculptures in open spaces amid Central Java communities in Semarang and Surakarta. The local community in Semarang is quite concerned about the heritage of their hometown and has established a cultural group to help support the protection of their objects and values. Meanwhile, the sculptures collection in Surakarta is in Panembahan Hardjonegara's residence, which is called Dalem Hardjonegaran. It was a private collection at first, but later on, the owner registered it as government property - though an agreement in the collection management remains. In addition to the documentation of ancient sculptures, the project aims to engage the local community in the recording process and situation. It has created two-way communication between the researchers and local people and helped to build dialogue and understanding. The outcomes include the ancient sculptures in digital three-dimensional form, a print-out and a web-based catalog being developed. The local people involved in this project also receive the data and hopefully can use it for preservation, education, and other purposes.