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The course teaches how to apply scientific and technological investigations to materials of artistic and historical importance.

Our students participate in laboratory and field, disciplinary and interdisciplinary activities, also organized with the participation of professionals from the fields of conservation, diagnostics and restoration of cultural heritage (see an example on UniGe's YouTube channel).

The graduate in Methodologies for the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage can become the architect of the enhancement of an asset and work alongside the professional restorer in the conservation and recovery of even problematic situations. He or she can also become the cornerstone of preventive conservation of artistic and architectural heritage, as he or she can read data and 'enter' materials, and can perform and interpret the analysis of their conservation site.

For the experimental activities carried out during the internship and thesis, the graduate in Methodologies for the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage can have up to 9 of the 24 months of documented experience in the applied sciences for the conservation of Cultural Heritage provided by Ministerial Decree 244/2019 recognized for registration in the national list of 'experts in diagnostics and applied science and technologies for cultural heritage'.

See the Course presentation video


What will you study

Here are some of the subjects taught in the course of study:

  • Physics
    . Elements of physics addressed to conservation and restoration of cultural heritage. Physical techniques most commonly used in conservation and restoration.
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  • Chemistry
    Quantitative understanding of alteration processes in cultural heritage (metallic and pictorial materials). Chemical-physical techniques of degradation characterization and intervention issues.
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  • Metal materials
    . Materials in artistic and archaeological heritage: study techniques, hints of metallurgy, alloys, degradation. Exercises on copper alloys in optical and electron microscopy with microanalysis.
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  • Mineralogy
    . Morphology, crystal-chemical-physical structure of minerals in cultural heritage. Methods of characterization of the state of preservation (optical microscopy in polarized light, X diffractometry) and possible restoration interventions.
  • Petrography
    . Tools for classifying stone materials, correlating petrographic analysis with technical aspects to develop a predictive potential for the durability of materials.
  • Mineralogical-Petrographic Applications
    Mineralogy and petrography applied to archaeometry of ceramic and stone materials of archaeological significance. Tools for characterization of artifacts, provenance and preservation of goods.
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  • Biology
    . Integrated course on aspects of cultural heritage conservation. Recognition and study of damage of works of art due to biological agents and innovative interventions in preventive conservation and biorestoration.
  • History and technique of restoration
    . History of restoration from the sixteenth century to the present, particularly pictorial restoration in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Theory and methods of modern restoration, treatment techniques of paintings, wood and stone sculpture. Visits to workshops, meetings with restorers.
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  • History of painting techniques
    . Behavior and history of pictorial materials between the Middle Ages and the 18th century; execution procedures on movable and masonry supports. Materials and procedures to historically contextualize and set up the conservation of paintings.
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    After graduation


    Who is he


    The master's degree graduate is a professional who can work on his/her own or with companies and professional organizations in charge of the conservation, restoration, management and protection of cultural heritage, as well as with local authorities and specific institutions, such as superintendencies, museums, archives, libraries and research institutes in conservation and restoration, both public and private.
    In particular, the graduate identifies, performs and evaluates applied diagnostic methodologies for understanding the properties, material constitution, degradation, and ancient production techniques of cultural property and for the development of new materials and treatment methods.

    What does it do?

    The graduate of the master's degree program:

    • designs and directs diagnostic protocols aimed at the conservation and/or restoration of cultural heritage
    • designs interventions with identification of methods, materials, measures and techniques for the recovery, conservation and/or restoration of cultural property
    • designs conservation and/or restoration interventions on the cultural property also in order to facilitate its readability, knowledge and usability by users
    • collaborates in the design and implementation of statistical and information systems for the processing of data related to cultural heritage

    Where does she work?

    • Researcher and graduate technician in diagnostics applied to the preservation and/or restoration of cultural heritage, in the field of ancient and historical-artistic sciences
    • Collaborator and coadjutor of university professors or officials of superintendencies, museums, archives, libraries and research institutes in public and private conservation and restoration in the planning and implementation of educational and curricular activities
    • Diagnostic expert in restoration laboratories
    • Museum curator and conservator