A Digital Monograph

SITE CONSERVATION

The nature of site preservation

     In principle, everything that is laid bare in the excavations is susceptible to conservation – in the first place the features of the built environment, such as walls, floors or installations, but also aspects resulting from archaeological intervention, such as sections.
     Being outdoors, these elements are the object of conflicting degrees of attention. On the one hand, they require extreme and immediate care, precisely because, being exposed to the weather, they are more readily degraded. On the other, the scope of the task is so vast, and the impression of durability so deceptive, that one is easily tempted not to do anything until it is too late.
     Which is why conservation of the outdoor often resorts to restoration, and, perhaps even more frequently, to outright reconstruction of what we may call doubly ruined ruins – original ruins as they were when first excavated, ruined once more by the subsequent neglect.
     At Mozan, site conservation has been a central concern since the beginning, and the site has served as a wide open experimental ground not only for a variety of practical innovations, but also for an ongoing reflection on matters of theory.

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