General principles of conservation

Work carried out on a monument follows a code of ethics and adheres to a framework of actions applicable to built heritage in general.

Built heritage and material heritage are the manifestation of a community’s historical consciousness through locations, buildings, objects, and cultures.

Preserving this heritage requires action, but also principles, as defined in the Venice Charter (1964) by the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS).

CONSERVATION of a monument consists in a set of cultural, legal, and political measures taken to maintain a building’s ‘identity’ (what makes it recognisable) over time, in all its substance and historical components.

RESTORATION of a monument involves all the practical, constructive or technical measures taken to not only preserve the monument, but also to showcase it and adapt it to contemporary uses within certain limits that help preserve its identity. Restoring a monument should not be confused with renovating, as renovation consists in refurbishing, often by erasing all its historical traces.

Finally, REHABILITATION of a monument consists in repurposing it for a new civil and social use or function.

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