The Ringlemere Cup – British Museum

The Ringlemere Cup is a Bronze Age vessel found in the Ringlemere barrow near Sandwich in the English county of Kent in 2001 and it currently resides at The British Museum. During a three month residency at The British Museum I had the honor of working with its curator Neil Wilkin and 3D scanning this beautiful artifact.

We decided to scan the cup to aid the reproduction of a replica and potentially gain new knowledge about the object. I used an Artec Spider ( a high resolution blue light scanner) to capture, in real time, both the surface structure and texture of the cup. The Artec has a sensitivity setting that compensates for the effectiveness of the gold, thus allowing me to capture the entirety of the cup and avoid data holes.

Ringlemere Cup by The British Museum on Sketchfab

By scanning the cup, it is possible for audiences from across the world to engage, explore and even download the Ringlemere cup in the comfort of their own homes. There is the possibility to learn about how the cup was crushed and in a more technological frame use the skecthfab platform to understand how the scan was produced.

From a personal perspective 3D scanning museum objects and disseminating them on online platforms helps to increase access and engagement, object understanding and learning in the museum. When scanning the object I became fascinated by the diamond shaped details on the cups internal rim and the zoom feature on sketchfab helped my to understand the construction of these details.

The image below are visualizations of each stage of the processing.

A special thanks to Neil Wilkin, Dan Pett and The British Museum for making this work possible.