International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property

Europe

Alhambra Palace - Granada
Alhambra Palace - Granada

The Second World War claimed more lives than any other war in history and obliterated a great deal of cultural property that defined the communities in which they were erected. This included many historic cities of Europe.

In its aftermath, the world needed a technical institution dedicated to preserving, protecting and restoring what humanity had destroyed. In response, UNESCO created ICCROM and chose Rome as its headquarters. As home to ICCROM and as a beneficiary of its earliest efforts, Europe is a region with which the organization has always had close ties, and which has also had an important role to play in the conservation sector.

Sixty years later, humanity is faced yet again with large-scale and catastrophic developments – mass displacement of people, entrenched conflict, harshening climate. All are challenging cultural heritage preservation. Europe is again in a positon to both benefit from and serve ICCROM’s efforts. This is not only because these demographic, political and climatic forces are playing out within or near its borders, but also because Europe is able – and therefore responsible – to play a more universal role in enacting change.

ICCROM is eager to engage with a Europe that leverages everything from its resources, to experience and diplomatic know-how to model inclusive and engaged societies. Europe can take the lead in truly integrating refugees who come in search of safety, embracing the cultures they bring and incorporating them into Europe’s own. Europe can show how caring for culture is caring for people as heritage congregates and generates cohesion, understanding and even economic opportunity. And when Europe extends this work beyond its borders, it can demonstrate how the returns on cultural diplomacy are more stable, inclusive and just nations – indeed, a better world.

 

Latest News

When a major disaster strikes, urban search and rescue (USAR) teams, under the coordination of the International Search and Rescue Advisory Group (INSARAG), are deployed within several hours. In these first moments, especially when disaster debris is removed, the affected region stands to lose most of its significant cultural heritage. Due to the extensive loss of cultural heritage during these first stages of a crisis, ICCROM has been striving to promote the integration of cultural heritage first aid into existing international guidelines for humanitarian aid and search and rescue operations.

The first international course on “Conservation and restoration of wooden architecture” has been nominated as one of the best museum educational projects at “Intermuseum ‘19”, the annual all-Russia museum fair.

ICCROM and its partners in Ukraine are sending out a call for papers to participate in the International Scientific and Practical Conference “Restoration of architectural monuments under the conditions of high level of subsoil waters and increased interior humidity” which will take place on 24-25 October 2019 at the National Kyiv-Pechersk Historical and Cultural Preserve.

Michael Albert Petzet, former President of ICOMOS Germany from 1988 to 2008 and of ICOMOS International from 1999 to 2012, has passed away. He was 86 years old.

The National Museum of Contemporary History in Ljubljana has hosted RE-ORG Slovenia, organized by ICOM Slovenia. The first part of the training programme took place from 22-24 May 2019.

The anticipated innovations include active and intelligent display cases, storage crates and archival boxes to improve exhibition, storage and transport conditions for museum, archives, libraries and private collections. To provide critical guidance for the project please take this survey and share your experience.

Partners are essential for heritage conservation efforts, as collaboration can leverage various types of capital (e.g., financial, human, social, physical materials) for such activities as fundraising, management, research, education, and outreach. In disaster contexts, partnerships are needed to coordinate response efforts—and the importance of including cultural heritage conservation in response efforts is gaining more attention. In particular, ICCROM is increasingly viewed an important partner in both leveraging their network to access needed local expertise and training response workers in best management practices.

ICCROM is shocked and saddened by the fire at Notre Dame Cathedral, and extends its heartfelt sympathy and solidarity with Parisians, the French people and the Catholic Church at this tragic time. It is a terrible loss for the world.

How should decisions be made regarding projects in or near World Heritage properties? This was the subject under discussion recently in Kotor, Montenegro, where ICCROM coordinated a course on Heritage Impact Assessments.

A new volume available for free download for those working on the protection, conservation, and management of archaeological heritage. One of few publications to address the issue of protective shelters, this book records the results of a week-long symposium in 2013 that used the archaeological site of Herculaneum as an “open classroom”.