“CONSERVATION VERSUS RECONSTRUCTION.” DO WE NEED OTHER OR NEW CRITERIA FOR CONSERVING ARCHITECTURAL SURFACES OF THE 20THCENTURY?


Abstract

Until today, in most European countries there is no juridical definition or legal recognition of the profession of the conservator-restorer. This fact means an almost complete lack of specific regulations anticipating conservation-restoration activities and stipulating the quality of these activities. The absolute need for qualified professionals, for a legal status, for an evaluation of the dynamics in a conservation–restoration project and finally for an analysis of the essential methodological steps of the conservation project require evidence of professional responsibility, competence and qualification. At the very beginning of the conservation of 20th century architecture, the professional figure of the architect wasn´t discussed in his historically grown leading position. The task of the conservator-restorer and of the conservation sciences at that time was to take part in a planning process that often started with a “reconstruction concept” for regaining the lost “original” design of the architecture. It seemed to be more important to reconstruct “ideas” than to follow the traces of the authentic materials, and to document and conserve them. Often this was justified with the alleged “special status” of modern architecture which was supposed to be too fragile and too ephemeral to be conserved in the same way as other historical monuments. This article wants to illustrate that effective “project management” based on a shared and transparent theoretical fundament is able to bring about a conciliation of the apparently diametrically opposed opinions and concepts of “Conservation” and “Reconstruction”.


Keywords

20th century architecture; conservation and restoration of architectural surfaces; modern building materials

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Published : 2019-12-20


Danzl, T. (2019). “CONSERVATION VERSUS RECONSTRUCTION.” DO WE NEED OTHER OR NEW CRITERIA FOR CONSERVING ARCHITECTURAL SURFACES OF THE 20THCENTURY?. Protection of Cultural Heritage, (8), 89-102. https://doi.org/10.35784/odk.1037

Thomas Danzl 
Technical University Munich, Department of Architecture  Germany
https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7719-5254

Graduated conservator-restorer, PhD in art history, member of the board of ICOMOS Germany and member of the NSC “Conservation-Restoration” of ICOMOS Germany; Professor at the Technical University Munich, Department of Architecture, Chair of Conservation-Restoration, Art Technology and Conservation Science






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