Recent progress in arts computing.
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The application of computing in the Arts has increased dramatically in the last decade. There has been an increasing use of computer graphics to generate static art, animations, films and even live visual accompaniments for music. A less publicised use of computing, which will be explored here, is in digital imaging, archiving of fine art and image processing for analysis. Many museums and galleries are exploring the uses of imaging, from public-access systems and CD-ROM publications to internal reference archives. On-line catalogues have been created on the Internet and research is underway to link diverse image archives and databases as well as allow image-based image searching. Scanners and cameras have been specially produced for art imaging, such as the VASARI scanner and MARC camera, both capable of resolutions of around 20k x 20k pels, with colour accuracy higher than film. Digital images of increasing quality are now an important research resource. The application of conventional image processing techniques is valuable in enhancing, overlaying and comparing images. New techniques are also being developed for feature enhancement or elimination (for example cracks) and colour analysis. Imaging techniques which give calibrated CIE Lab values allow colour changes to be analysed, due to cleaning or fading for example. This paper will present a brief review of the field and specific new techniques being developed for the analysis of art.
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