Romoe Conservators Network

Conservation and restoration

What is restoration and what is conservation?

Here you can learn more about the differences between conservation, preventive conservation and restoration.

What is the difference between the term conservation and restoration? Gain insights into works and projects from academic restoration to handcrafted restoration and read more about the profession of restorer in the following article.

The different fields of restoration

Restoration and conservation play an important role in the conservation of cultural heritage. These objects can be works of art, books, furniture or architectural monuments. Out of this necessity several specialist fields have emerged such as book restoration, painting restoration, furniture restoration and stone restoration. Experts are active in each of these areas, whose work contributes to the fact that mankind, even after several hundred or thousand years, still gets an insight into the works and creations of societies and peoples long past.

The conservation of cultural heritage is carried out in different ways. In general, the intervention should be kept as minimal as possible. Therefore, it is first checked whether a conservation is sufficient. In this case the object will be preserved in its current state. Also, preventive measures can be taken, which have the goal to prevent that a cultural asset takes damage in the future. This includes, among other things, safe storage at a constant air temperature and humidity, but includes also protection against harmful influences due to light. A restoration, on the other hand, aims to partially restore an object to its former state, for example to restore its original appearance, "readability" or functionality.

Specialist and specialized topics on conservation and restoration

How important is restoration?

Our cultural circle has dedicated itself to the task of protecting objects with an old cultural heritage. On the one hand, this mentality stems from the desire to preserve testimonies of the past because they have a historical and thus educational value. On the other hand, it is postulated that the past is just as important as the new, modern. In the course of the last century, several international charters and conventions established standards according to which the protection of cultural heritage should be proceeded. The creation of museums for smaller objects on the one hand, but also the introduction of courses of study and the profession of restorer are testimony to these efforts.

The profession of the restorer

As can be seen above, the profession of a restorer is very varied. Depending on requirements, specialists are trained for each of the areas mentioned. However, they not only deal with practical implementation, but are also responsible for identifying cultural heritage, documenting damage and restoration measures and recommending measures to best protect an object. It follows from this that restoration and conservation is both a manual-artistic as well as a scientific activity.



Art conservation and restoration




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