07.11.2019 - Culture Sector

Conservation and restoration in underwater archaeology: experiences, methods and new discoveries – CRUA 2019

© ICUA Zadar

24 – 26 October 2019

Category II Centre ICUA Zadar, University of Zadar, Croatia

The UNESCO Category II Center associated to the 2001 Convention on the Protection of Underwater Cultural Heritage - International Centre for Underwater Archaeology in Zadar (ICUA Zadar) in partnership with the University of Zadar hosted an international conference ‘’Conservation and restoration in underwater archaeology: experiences, methods and new discoveries’’ – CRUA 2019 from 24th to 26th October 2019.

The conference aimed to raise awareness of the key role of conservation-restoration in safeguarding cultural heritage as well as to share knowledge of the complex activity of this discrete profession. The conference was focused on experiences and conservation methods which have already been developed around the world. Underwater archaeology techniques evolved rapidly allowing better scientific research and led to the need to preserve objects for storage or public display.

Keynote speakers were Mr. Quoc Khoi Tran (ARC-Nucléart, CEA, France), Mr. Jean-Bernard Memet (A-CORROS Expertises, France), Mr. Peter D. Fix (Texas A&M University, USA),and Ms. Barbara Davidde (high Institute for Conservation and Restoriation, Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Tourism, Italy).  Ms. Davidde is also an active member of the Scientific and Technical advisory body to the 2001 Convention.    

The conference was thematically divided into three panels followed by panel discussions within which 21 experts from 11 countries took part (Slovenia, Italy, France, United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Portugal, USA, Colombia, Republic of Korea and Croatia).

The first day of the conference was held on Thursday, October 24th 2019 at St. Nicholas Church and gathered 11 speakers divided into two panels.

Panel 1 In situ conservation of underwater archaeological materials and sites encouraged participants to present their case studies according the basic principles set by the UNESCO Convention on the protection of the underwater cultural heritage for the protection of both ancient and modern shipwrecks and of submerged archaeological sites.

Within Panel 2 entitled Application of new materials and technologies for conservation practice and continued review of established methods the speakers tried to give an answer what are the best conservation techniques of waterlogged wooden or metallic objects. The lectures focused on different conservation experiences and methods that have already been developed and are being applied worldwide.

The second day the conference was held on Friday, October 25th 2019 at the University of Zadar. Panel 3 entitled Conservation case studies convened 10 speakers who described their own experiences and conservation expertise examples. Presentations were intended to contribute to the understanding of materials and conservations techniques, as well as to present treatment procedures in the most accessible way to different specialists connected with underwater archeology.

There was a showcase on innovative conservation research and practices from 6 countries (Slovenia, Germany, Greece, China, Mexico and Croatia).

CRUA 2019 conference was financed by the Croatian Ministry of Culture and was held under the patronage of the Zadar County.




<- Back to: Underwater Cultural Heritage
Back to top