The Angera stone is a sedimentary Triassic dolostone mainly composed of dolomite, which was widely employed in the Lombard architecture. In the present work, the study of the Angera stone of the ‘Cortile del Richini’, a masterpiece of the Lombard baroque, is discussed as an example of a particularly challenging conservation issue. The courtyard suffered from a particularly troubled conservative history and the highly polluted urban environment of Milan provided very favourable conditions for the decay of such a delicate stone type. The last extensive conservative intervention was performed during the nineties due to massive black crust formation and granular disintegration of the stone. Almost 20 years later, a thorough study of the stone has been aimed at the definition of a long-term maintenance project. The Angera stone has been investigated in order to define an updated version of its state of conservation, as well as to track any changes in the degradation mechanisms due to the environmental variations of the Milan city centre. In particular, the soluble salts’ content of the stone substrate has been evaluated as an indicator of the damage level. The results highlighted that the stone is currently in critical condition: An extensive sulphation process is taking place, leading to the chemical transformation of the dolomitic substrate into gypsum. Moreover, the powder deposits affecting the stone surfaces have a similar composition to those generally found in the black crusts growing in urban environment. Therefore, they can be considered as precursor of this particularly dangerous decay mechanism.

THE ANGERA STONE: A CHALLENGING CONSERVATION ISSUE IN THE POLLUTED ENVIROMENT OF MILAN (ITALY)

GULOTTA, DAVIDE;BERTOLDI, MARGHERITA;BORTOLOTTO, SUSANNA;TONIOLO, LUCIA
2013

Abstract

The Angera stone is a sedimentary Triassic dolostone mainly composed of dolomite, which was widely employed in the Lombard architecture. In the present work, the study of the Angera stone of the ‘Cortile del Richini’, a masterpiece of the Lombard baroque, is discussed as an example of a particularly challenging conservation issue. The courtyard suffered from a particularly troubled conservative history and the highly polluted urban environment of Milan provided very favourable conditions for the decay of such a delicate stone type. The last extensive conservative intervention was performed during the nineties due to massive black crust formation and granular disintegration of the stone. Almost 20 years later, a thorough study of the stone has been aimed at the definition of a long-term maintenance project. The Angera stone has been investigated in order to define an updated version of its state of conservation, as well as to track any changes in the degradation mechanisms due to the environmental variations of the Milan city centre. In particular, the soluble salts’ content of the stone substrate has been evaluated as an indicator of the damage level. The results highlighted that the stone is currently in critical condition: An extensive sulphation process is taking place, leading to the chemical transformation of the dolomitic substrate into gypsum. Moreover, the powder deposits affecting the stone surfaces have a similar composition to those generally found in the black crusts growing in urban environment. Therefore, they can be considered as precursor of this particularly dangerous decay mechanism.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11311/789319
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