”The virtual reconstruction of the Simu Museum” project is part of a current stage of recovery regarding the collective memory related to old Bucharest. The demolition of the Simu Museum was among the city's first traumatic experiences during the communist era. Where remedial action is (almost) impossible on a practical level, digital reconstruction, events, and associated exhibitions attempt a symbolic reparation. The finality of the project is the awareness of the impact of the demolition as well as an urge to appreciate the remaining heritage.
The project starts with the objects and stories from CED UAUIM (over time, several pieces from the Simu Museum were used for ornamental drawing in the training of future architects) complemented by a historical documentation made by archive studies and partnerships with various institutions (National Archives of Romania, The National Museum of Art of Romania, Bucharest Museum, Agerpress, Romanian Academy Library, Union of Romanian Architects, National Institute of Heritage) as well as with the support of photographers or photo collectors (Ion Lucăcel, Andrei Bârsan, Cezar Buiumaci, Radu Ştefănescu).
The main phases of the project were: 3D scanning and photogrammetry of several preserved pieces from the Simu Museum (currently in the patrimony of the Bucharest Museum, The National Museum of Art of Romania and CED UAUIM), 3D modeling and reconstruction of the Simu Museum building, adaptation to experience space in reality virtual. Throughout the project, the VR Headset and the associated application made several stops in different key areas of the city (Bucharest Municipality Museum, University Tourist Information Center, Town Hall in Șerban Voda Street, etc.) being most of the time accompanied by exhibitions, debates, conferences.
Unlike panoramic photos and applications such as the Universal Museum of Art, the VR application for the Simu Museum is one that does not distort the exhibition space or the pieces. Being a public building and preserving a good part of the original pieces, for the Simu Museum there is enough information to reconstruct the interiors and the atmosphere. The virtual reconstruction can thus provide a context that the collection, dispersed through various museums in Bucharest, has lost.