By Neville Agnew
The Mogao Grottoes, a global background web site close to Dunhuang urban within the Gobi desolate tract, is found at the old caravan course that after associated China with the West. approximately 500 of those grotto temples stay. This quantity of symposium lawsuits marks the end result of a special three-year Getty Conservation Institute collaborative venture with the chinese language gurus and discusses a variety of ways to website managementas good as conservation rules and perform and geotechnical and environmental issues.
THE GETTY CONSERVATION INSTITUTE is dedicated to the renovation of the world’s cultural history and, as such, seeks to discover how one can increase the information and knowledge to be had to conservation execs in addition to to a broader viewers. those lawsuits are a part of that dedication. they've been lengthy within the making, yet anticipating them has been worthwhile.
The overseas convention at the Conservation of historic websites at the Silk street, backed by way of the Getty Conservation Institute including China’s Dunhuang Academy and nation Bureau of Cultural Relics, came about in October 1993 on the Mogao grottoes, Dunhuang, the People’s Republic of China. considering then, a number of different conferences were held. all of them shared within the goals of the preliminary convention: to collect a global panel of experts from quite a lot of disciplines to supply a serious mass of workmanship that will or might be utilized to fixing the tough and various difficulties that threaten a few of the world’s so much enforcing and significant cultural background websites, the tremendous Buddhist grottoes at the Silk Road.
Grottoes pose quite thorny difficulties for conservation. They require a essentially holistic view if the conservation strategy goes to be priceless within the long-term. on the comparable time—because in their importance, geographic situation, richness and diversity of fabrics, precise microclimates, carrying on with use as spiritual websites, and transforming into allure for tourists—the Buddhist grottoes of the Silk street require committed learn with quite a few disciplines to appreciate their deterioration difficulties and acceptable tools of prevention. The convention on which those lawsuits are established marked the 1st time that students and scientists from the West and China had convened at a history website in China for the typical objective of supplying info, replacing rules, and devising mechanisms to avoid wasting grotto websites. The essays assembled right here signify contributions from Australia, Canada, France, Germany, India, Japan, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, and the uk, in addition to China and the us.
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Additional info for Conservation of Ancient Sites on the Silk Road
In the course of this exercise, a number of issues crucial to the future of the site emerged. Participants and staff found themselves considering a range of issues and making decisions about questions such as: • whether the protection of the carvings by the erection of an intrusive structure is more in keeping with the stated significance and management context than leaving them exposed, or whether it is more appropriate to protect them less completely and keep the setting and aesthetic feeling of the site more intact; • whether to allow access to a particular part of the site that is very significant to visitors—perhaps to people practicing religious rites—or to prevent this type of activity because it may damage the site; • how best to interpret the site—with signs, brochures, a visitor center, guided tours, or a combination of these; • whether the natural vegetation should be left, removed, or restored, depending on its importance and its effect on other significant elements of the site; • whether research will be allowed on the site, and if so by whom, and in what circumstances; and • what the best makeup of the staff might be, including the roles and priority of guides, guards, scientists, and managers.
Weather stations were set up to monitor the environmental patterns around the Mogao grottoes (Sun 1993). 4. Descriptive pamphlets were published and explanatory plaques installed around the grotto site. Visitor regulations were drawn up and tour guides provided to explain the site to the visitors, monitor their conduct, and keep them from damaging the caves. 5. A system of regular grotto inspection was established to detect any damage caused by natural processes or human factors and to facilitate immediate emergency repairs to damaged caves.
Li Shi Initial findings on cementation materials in Dunhuang wall paintings. Collected Papers on Dunhuang Research 2:14–17. Lanzhou: Gansu Minzu Chubanshe. Li Shi and Li Yunhong Experiments on aging of polyethylene glycol and polyethylene acetate emulsions illumination in special environments. Collected Papers on Dunhuang Research 2:206–12. Lanzhou: Gansu Minzu Chubanshe. 1993 Li Shi and Zhang Yongjun Atmospheric monitoring in the Mogao grottoes at Dunhuang. Collected Papers on Dunhuang Research 1:53–55.
Conservation of Ancient Sites on the Silk Road by Neville Agnew