The 2022 edition with the theme “Towards the Metaverse” wanted to introduce the public to the perspectives that are outlined in the field of new virtual worlds. The announced advent of the Metaverse, while not representing an absolute novelty, suggests significant transformations in the methods of communication, entertainment, commerce, which will affect all areas of social life. What role will culture and archaeological heritage play in this context? To date, the characteristics of the phenomenon are not yet well defined, but ideally any survey or reconstructive modeling can become, in the near future, an immersive environment in which to move, meet other users, learn information and weave relationships. The Exhibition hosted the most interesting and original immersive applications focused on material and non-material heritage, for the creation of digital contexts with a high cultural content. The theme of the Workshop, focused on the Metaverse, addressed the transformations taking place, linked to the advent of this virtual world and the blockchain, which will drastically change the emotional and economic perspectives of the use of cultural heritage.
For 2021, ArchaeoVirtual was presented by CNR ISPC, Digital Heritage Innovation Laboratory, based in Rome, and it was under the banner of “New Interactions”, intended both from a technical and a social and narrative point of view. Almost all the applications of this edition do not require physical contact with surfaces, demonstrating the variety of touchless interaction tools, potentially available today for Museums, thanks to new technologies and strategies for collective fruition. At the same time, we wanted to enhance new interactive methods in terms of forms of use of heritage and the relationship with the communities, presenting some of the most significant ongoing projects on the theme of Heritage Science.
For 2019, ArchaeoVirtualwas presented by the Virtual Reality Laboratory of the CNR ISPC (www.ispc.cnr.it) the new great Institute of the National Research Council dedicated to the Sciences of Cultural Heritage and by the Mediterranean Exchange of Archaeological Tourism.
ArchaeoVirtual’s usual gaze at the evolution of digital applications for Cultural Heritage has turned to the renewed interest in the forms of narration (traditional and multimedia) of the past. Alongside the growing examples of narrative and non-interactive videos (historical fiction), even the most innovative applications such as immersive virtual reality are looking for new narrative metaphors.
ArchaeoVirtual presented itself in 2019 in the audiovisual format only, with a video area that saw the alternation of audio-visual products of great emotional impact and high graphic rendering.
For 2018, ArchaeoVirtual was presented by the ITABC of the CNR, Laboratory of Virtual Reality, by the General Management of the Museums of Mibac (DG Musei) and by the BMTA, who worked together for the conception of the Exhibition, the selection of projects and the organization of the thematic workshop that has been supporting this important temporary exhibition for years.
On the occasion of the 20th Anniversary, in 2017, the ArchaeoVirtual Jukebox was an interactive cinema theatre that allowed visitors to choose and “listen” to the 54 best memories of the last decade: from the virtual museum of Giotto’s Scrovegni Chapel to that of the Valley del Tevere, the journey crosses the 132 projects presented at the exhibition between 2006 and 2017.