Architectural restoration is a field rich in antinomy (history/science, history/art, history/technique, as well as material/form, tradition/innovation, and so on). For this reason, it can be considered an atypical discipline that cannot easily be defined or regulated by unequivocal laws. Given its unusual nature, the first question tackled by this paper is whether or not architectural restoration can be con- sidered a scientific subject and, above all, whether it is possible to carry out scientific research in the field of restoration. Like medicine, architectural restoration is characterised by a close connection between science and ethics; like a doctor, a restorer should continually ensure that his or her technical skills comply with the theoretical principles of conservation. It is a type of research that cannot be measured in terms of scientific progress but rather in terms of the professional, personal growth of each restorer and in his or her ability to provide specific scientific knowledge from within a generally accepted ‘code of ethics’ for conservation projects. That is why it is very difficult to convert the result of each personal experience into a theoretical apparatus and it is also the reason why the future of restoration research probably does not lie in the practical field (where it usually borrows tools from other scientific fields) but in the conceptual one. This essay also proposes a reflection on the need, in a rapidly changing world, to update our approach to conservation, which should no longer be understood as an inflexible strategy to defend cultural heritage from the hostility of the external world, but rather as an activity with which the restorer manages the unavoidable changes of the past in (for) the future.

Al margine della scienza, Il restauro fra competenze e buon senso

A. M. Oteri
2017-01-01

Abstract

Architectural restoration is a field rich in antinomy (history/science, history/art, history/technique, as well as material/form, tradition/innovation, and so on). For this reason, it can be considered an atypical discipline that cannot easily be defined or regulated by unequivocal laws. Given its unusual nature, the first question tackled by this paper is whether or not architectural restoration can be con- sidered a scientific subject and, above all, whether it is possible to carry out scientific research in the field of restoration. Like medicine, architectural restoration is characterised by a close connection between science and ethics; like a doctor, a restorer should continually ensure that his or her technical skills comply with the theoretical principles of conservation. It is a type of research that cannot be measured in terms of scientific progress but rather in terms of the professional, personal growth of each restorer and in his or her ability to provide specific scientific knowledge from within a generally accepted ‘code of ethics’ for conservation projects. That is why it is very difficult to convert the result of each personal experience into a theoretical apparatus and it is also the reason why the future of restoration research probably does not lie in the practical field (where it usually borrows tools from other scientific fields) but in the conceptual one. This essay also proposes a reflection on the need, in a rapidly changing world, to update our approach to conservation, which should no longer be understood as an inflexible strategy to defend cultural heritage from the hostility of the external world, but rather as an activity with which the restorer manages the unavoidable changes of the past in (for) the future.
Ricerca/Restauro
9788871407647
science, research, theory, processes, architectural conservation
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
sez.-1a Oteri completo.pdf

Accesso riservato

: Publisher’s version
Dimensione 534.04 kB
Formato Adobe PDF
534.04 kB Adobe PDF   Visualizza/Apri

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11311/1072864
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus ND
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? ND
social impact