Digitizing the Collections

Martin Van Buren Bust

(GERMAN, 1789–1872)

Dr. Bernard Means, professor at Virginia Commonwealth University and director of the Virtual Curation Lab, has returned to the NYSM to help digitize our collections. From fossils and skeletons to artwork, historic furniture, and even rare books, the 3-D scans will provide a digital archive that can be virtually accessed (and even printed) anywhere in the world!

Featured here is a recent 3-D scan of a 19th century marble bust representing the eighth president of the United States, Martin Van Buren. Sculpted from life by German artist Ferdinand Pettrich, the marble bust had been on long-term display at Ichabod Crane High School in Kinderhook, Columbia County, where Van Buren was born and lived much of his life. Returned to the NYSM in 2021, the original bust remains safe and secure in our collections while the 3-D scan can be manipulated from all angles online and publicly downloaded for years to come.

View and interact with the 3-D scan of Martin Van Buren’s bust here: https://skfb.ly/ouGUB

The 3-D digitization of the NYSM collections is supported in part with federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds allocated to the New York State Library by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

You can see all of NYSM’s current 3-D models here: https://sketchfab.com/virtualcurationlab/collections/new-york-state-museum

Want to learn more about the Virtual Curation Lab? Check them out here: https://sketchfab.com/virtualcurationlab

Martin Van Buren Bust
3D scanning
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