NATURAL STONES

The modern idea of restoration dates back to the 18th century. Nevertheless, there is evidence, since ancient times, of interventions on artworks, which often included reworks and adaptations that did not take into consideration the originality and the aesthetic value of the artefacts. Sometimes they followed procedures similar to those used in restoration, though not in compliance with current theories.

Since the 70s, a greater interest in the deterioration of historic and artistic heritage has arisen in Italy. A heritage whose boundaries tended to expand to increasingly include the meaning of “cultural heritage”, that cultural resource which establishes relationships between man and what, being part of the past, represents his essence. The idea that every “object of the past” bears within itself the value of unrepeatability – a condition sufficient to raise the need to protect it and guarantee its best preservation – is being reinforced. The theory of architectural heritage has by now strengthened concepts which are essential for the preservation of the original material, being it authentic, unique and non-repeatable, a document providing evidence of a civilization marked by time and history.

Unfortunately, these fundamental principles are not often applied on worksites due to inadequate specific regulations, use of low-quality products and labour, indifference of the local administration to the preservation of historic heritage, lack of control and monitoring of the works, together with the permanent alibi of the economic circumstances. The natural-stone wall surfaces used as finishing for the architectural facades are the most exposed to degradation and erroneous procedures. Products meant to be used for restoration, in addition to strict laboratory research, also require accurate on-site verification to ascertain their real behavior over time, their stability, the absence of direct and indirect negative effects, and their potential reversibility. PHASE products for the restoration of natural stones and historic structures/artifacts are selected to support techniques of intervention ensuring the respect of the historic heritage, environment and workers.

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