Taplow House Unit 001 Room 001

RTIs from Taplow House


In the spring of 2014 Ian and Dawson and Louisa Minkin got into Taplow House’s row of forgotten shops – a cab office, a laundrette, a butcher’s – a street in the sky that was closed up in the early seventies. We were intent on recording the site before it was lost. Over a ten-day period we attempted to apply contemporary archaeological recording practices to the site; new vision technologies such as photogrammetry, reflectance transformation imaging [RTI] and 3D scanning.

Our archaeological colleagues referred to our recording attempts at Taplow House as ‘dirty RTI’. We had become interested in the artefacts of the process itself, the shiny black ball used to register each shot, the camera recording itself in a mirror, dirt on the screen, clouds and ripples in the processing; excitable and sensuous surfaces. Constructing the buildings in 3D software produced ruined monuments from the future, unstable depopulated sites, ‘inadequate descriptive systems’ of expropriation and dispossession.

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