Dancing Śiva

of the Prasat Thom in Koh Ker


Dancing Śiva Project of 3D-Reconstruction
of the Dancing Śiva of the Prasat Thom in Koh Ker

Shiva (or Śiva), the god of destruction, is one of the most important deities in hinduism.
At the Koh Ker Site in Cambodia, the french arachaeologist Eric Bourdonneau, from École française d'Extrême-Orient (EFEO) localized hundreds of fragments of a statue group destroyed by looters. He identified them as Shiva, surrounded by Uma, Camunda-Kali, Nandikesvara and Mahakala.
To reconstruct this heavy and up to 6 meter high "puzzle", members of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Scientific Computing (IWR)s scanned a selection of these fragments in Siem Reap, Phnom Penh, and Paris to gain 3D-models. In the Computergraphics Lab of the IWR - after a four weeks marathon of modelling and shifting blocks - the Shiva Statue is virtually dancing again!
On ARTE (German/French TV channel) in the video Angkor entdecken / Angkor redécouvert the whole story is told in a 90 min documentary, a film by Frédéric Wilner.


Interactive 3D Models of Fragments

In case your browser (e.g. recent versions of Firefox, Chrome) supports WebGL, you can have a closer, interactive look at reduced 3D models of the fragments of the Dancing Śiva. Use the left mouse for rotation, mouse wheel for zooming, and right mouse for translation. Have a try here.



In our 2011 and 2013 IWR Campaigns in Cambodia we scanned about 70 parts which are listed in the links below. We strictly followed the numbering in the description by Eric Bourdonneau, École française d'Extrême-Orient (EFEO)

2011 IWR Campaign in National Museum of Cambodia, Phnom Penh

National Museum of Cambodia, Phnom Penh

2013 IWR Campaign in Preah Norodom Sihanuk Museum, Siem Reap

Dancing Śiva

Uma, Nandikeśvara, Camunda-Kali

Reliefs of Angkor Wat

2013 IWR Campaign in Musée Guimet and Morangis, Paris

Musée Guimet

Musée Guimet, Paris

Morangis, near Paris



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Permission for Laurent Gillet, Frédéric Wilner for processing of the data related with the filming, reconstruction and exhibition in October 2013, Musée Guimet.