(Dipartimento di Architettura, Disegno Storia Progetto, Firenze, Italy)

Abstract: The rupestrian settlements have always been a highly suggestive and interesting subjects for archaeologists and artistry scholars. In many rupestrian sites, one of the main problem has always been the clear reading of the shape of the cave and the creation of relationship between a certain variety of information and graphical and textual elements coming from the state of knowledge about that structure. Often the place where the monument is situated can be quite difficult to find and to access, even in the case of some well known sites it can be hard to find their exact position when moving in their surroundings. A possible answer to this complex problem, can come from a multimedia digital solution, combining the web geographic resources and the use of virtual panoramic images capable to create links to a wide range of data. In the proposed case study, the complex settlements in the Massafra area, near Taranto in Puglia –Italy, has been taken as a test to build a system based on Google Earth paths and waypoint tracing combined with panoramic images built using standard photographic cameras and a dedicated tripod head. The overall result is linked to a system of connections capable to establish a complete network between the location of the monument and all the available information about architecture, art and history related to it. In specific, the Church of San Simine and Sant’Angelo are the core of the research, while a partially rupestrian architecture was studied in the town center of Massafra. As shown, this work has born from the wish to deal the studied projects in a manner capable to develop a method to establish a different technical methodology which can be applied also in other architectonic cases and can be expanded using the latest multimedia technologies.

Keywords: Rupestrian, Panoramic, Google Earth, Web Geography, Digital imaging