In front of you sits a black lacquer box with a golden crest inlaid on the lid, tied with decorative red cords. Intrigued, you untie the cords, revealing three rare Japanese scrolls in gold Gohei paper decorative silk wrappers, tucked neatly into this beautiful housing. Of course, you want to unroll and see these scrolls! But how does one go about examining a 47-foot-long physical object? Furthermore, how can the objects be kept safe while doing so?
When Charles Fosselman, of Stanford’s East Asia Library, identified these objects up for potential digitization, the Digital Production Group (DPG) was thrilled to have the opportunity to help showcase such unique and beautiful objects. The Digital Library Systems and Services team had been working on a viewer that would be perfect for close inspection of such physically enormous materials, bringing new opportunities for a greater audience to experience these hidden treasures.