Maria ANDALORO1 / Tatiana PIGNATALE2 / Giorgio VERDIANI2
(1Dipartimento di Scienze dei Beni Culturali, Università degli Studi della Tuscia, Viterbo / 2Dipartimento di Architettura, Università degli Studi di Firenze, Italy)

Keywords: modeling, rupestrian, Turkey, digital survey, heritage at risk

In the deep core of Turkey, in Cappadocia, the Meryem Ana church in Göreme, is a meaningful place, rich of suggestions, it is carved in an emerging peak, it faces on the “valley of the swords” 25 meters high over the area where the valley becomes narrow. It’s a small church, but enriched with wonderful mural paints, showing the stories from the Bible about the mother of Christ Mary. The main problem of this church is the large crack dividing in two parts the whole structure, threatening almost the whole church. Other parts of the cave system is already gone lost and the access is done passing through the remains of tunnels and small openings. The water passing by the large crack has partially damaged a large area of the mural paints cancelling their colours. So while our mission was visiting the area during September 2012, it came out clearly that there was no time to lose and our group has operated the 3D laser scanner survey of this monument, finding the needed time in an already very dense agenda. The survey work was planned in three main solutions: photographic survey, laser scanner survey, panoramic photos survey. The results are quite impressive, because they allow to read quite clearly how dramatic is the condition of the crack and to read the extension of this imminent disaster. But at the same time the digital survey is also the right base to start projecting possible interventions on the church and its mural paintings. The possibility to carry into the whole work in a very short time according to the possibilities of the digital tools, showed how a correct documentation can be done also in emergency situations allowing to preserve the status of a monument reducing the risk of its total loss.