If you've ever set foot in a museum of Greek and Roman art, you've probably seen the rows of tranquil-looking concrete busts. They do, however, have no pupils in the eyes, lack any sort of color, and in general, get kinda repetitive after the third and fourth display hall.

But the artist named Haround Binous is bringing the dusty emperors back to life in a series of hyper-realistic illustrations. The guy from Université de Lausanne, Switzerland is combining facial recognition AI, Photoshop, and historical references to revive all the Roman emperors, from Augustus to Valentinian III.

The result is so precise and true to life, these ancient dudes with luscious curls and sun-kissed tans could easily pass as A-list Hollywood actors off duty. I mean, look at Augustus—is that you, Daniel Craig?

More info: Facebook | Instagram

#1

Augustus

Augustus

Haroun Binous Report

Ani Archeron
Community Member
3 months ago

its like a mix of jeremy renner and daniel craig

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#2

Philip II

Philip II

Haroun Binous Report

Deson
Community Member
3 months ago

What throws me off is you can see the pupils on the sculpture. The eyes in the CGI don't match the location of the sculpture.

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#3

Galba

Galba

Haroun Binous Report

Brandy Dor
Community Member
3 months ago

Resting Bi+<h face!

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Turning cold emperors' stones into hyperreal flesh may seem like a mission impossible. But with the help of today’s machine learning technologies, images can be reconstructed and brought to life in colorful illustrations.

This is what Haroun has done for his Roman emperor recreations. With the help of AI, Photoshop, and historical references, he came up with these hyperrealistic illustrations giving us a glimpse of how great Roman emperors like Caius Julius Cæsar Germanicus and Nero looked in real life.

#4

Nero

Nero

Haroun Binous Report

sbj
Community Member
3 months ago

Looks like Prince Harry has gained a bit of weight due to the lock down

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#5

Philip The Arab

Philip The Arab

Haroun Binous Report

Martha Meyer
Community Member
3 months ago

The nose and mouth look completely different.

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#6

Gordian II

Gordian II

Haroun Binous Report

Annette Herr
Community Member
3 months ago

This is the most similar. The others are way off.

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Haroun Binous said he used “superposition and simultaneous comparison” techniques that “allowed me to arrive at these faces.”But the facial features are just one part of the job.

In order to get hold of the textures and colors, Haroun researched original historical sources. “Eyes, hair, and colors were based on quotes from Suetonius,” he wrote.

#7

Caligula

Caligula

Haroun Binous Report

Jonny Chevalier
Community Member
3 months ago

Lower lip wrong..

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#8

Domitian

Domitian

Haroun Binous Report

Kathryn Baylis
Community Member
3 months ago

Got the lips wrong,

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#9

Tiberius

Tiberius

Haroun Binous Report

Jonny Chevalier
Community Member
3 months ago

Mouth off as is farhead

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In reality, it’s not entirely clear how accurate the emperors' busts are to begin with since our best evidence of how they looked are the busts themselves. However, we do perceive them as roughly accurate, since we now know that stylistically, the Romans preferred realism in their sculpture dating back to the Republican period.

Other than busts, historical sources do reveal a thing or two about the people of the Roman Empire. The Roman historian Gaius Suetonius Tranquillus, for example, who wrote during the early Imperial era, described some of the emperors in his notes.

#10

Claudius Gothicus

Claudius Gothicus

Haroun Binous Report

Jeremi Colvin
Community Member
3 months ago

Dude kinda resembles Jerry Falwell Jr. (before the trouble) falwell-12...6-jpeg.jpg falwell-1280x720-5f3fc2526b176-jpeg.jpg

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#11

Trajan

Trajan

Haroun Binous Report

Miss Cris
Community Member
3 months ago

Not very similar to the sculpture...

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#12

Hadrian

Hadrian

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sbj
Community Member
3 months ago

Well, after all, he built that wall to last

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According to Christies, Suetonius was very receptive to physiognomic thinking and “may have been swayed by them in his description of the fearsome appearance of Caligula.” He was presented as the epitome of arbitrary cruelty and immoral excesses that was reflected in his description of Caligula’s face.

On the other side of the opposite extreme, there was a fair share of heroic idealization of the most powerful men and it’s likely that their busts have done some justice to their looks. Who knows—maybe some of the most breathtaking busts have undergone an ancient equivalent of airbrushing? That, we may never know.

#13

Marcus Aurelius

Marcus Aurelius

Haroun Binous Report

D-m Keilman
Community Member
3 months ago

I'm seeing a lot of Hyde from that 70s show in the bust.

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#14

Gordian III

Gordian III

Haroun Binous Report

Miss Cris
Community Member
3 months ago

Where's the litle hole on his chin?

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#15

Tacitus

Tacitus

Haroun Binous Report

Jonny Chevalier
Community Member
3 months ago

Sculpture’s face looks more like Alec Guinness.

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#16

Vitellius

Vitellius

Haroun Binous Report

Andrew Gibb
Community Member
3 months ago

John Goodman?

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#17

Lucius Verus

Lucius Verus

Haroun Binous Report

boredpanDaman
Community Member
3 months ago

the sculpture is all curly, the end result is not... pfff, im dissapointed

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#18

Diocletian

Diocletian

Haroun Binous Report

Kathryn Baylis
Community Member
3 months ago (edited)

Total miss. Doesn’t look anything like the statue.

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#19

Theodosius I

Theodosius I

Haroun Binous Report

Ava Suri
Community Member
3 months ago

Hair needs to be curlier, lips fuller

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#20

Antoninus Pius

Antoninus Pius

Haroun Binous Report

T Simmons
Community Member
3 months ago

This comment is hidden. Click here to view.

Zuckerberg?!

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#21

Commodus

Commodus

Haroun Binous Report

Catlady6000
Community Member
3 months ago

Love the goofy sculpture

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#22

Gordian I

Gordian I

Haroun Binous Report

boredpanDaman
Community Member
3 months ago

his knot!!

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#23

Claudius

Claudius

Haroun Binous Report

Elak Swindell
Community Member
3 months ago

Eyes are wrong. Need to be close set like the original bust. That is an important feature.

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#24

Valerian

Valerian

Haroun Binous Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
3 months ago

The chin is really off

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#25

Nerva

Nerva

Haroun Binous Report

Kathryn Baylis
Community Member
3 months ago

Not a match at all.

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#26

Caracalla

Caracalla

Haroun Binous Report

Dirk Van Troyen
Community Member
3 months ago

Needs more of the "Who farted" expression

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#27

Maximinus Thrax

Maximinus Thrax

Haroun Binous Report

Kathryn Baylis
Community Member
3 months ago

Hope he didn’t name his daughter Anne. Ba dum tss.

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#28

Maximian

Maximian

Haroun Binous Report

boredpanDaman
Community Member
3 months ago

the statue looks chinese

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#29

Titus

Titus

Haroun Binous Report

Miss Cris
Community Member
3 months ago

The pic face look less human than the sculpture!

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#30

Otho

Otho

Haroun Binous Report

Wolfik
Community Member
3 months ago

Not even close.

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Note: this post originally had 69 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.