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Conservation Practices on Archaeological Excavations: Principles and Methods

Corrado Pedelì and Stefano Pulga, translated by Erik Risser

The relationship between archaeology and conservation has long been complex and, at times, challenging. Archaeologists are often seen as interested principally in excavation and research, while conservators are concerned mainly with stabilization and the prevention of deterioration. Yet it is often initial conservation in the field that determines the long-term survival and intelligibility of both moveable artifacts and fixed architectural features.

This user-friendly guide to conservation practices on archaeological excavations covers both structures and artifacts, starting from the moment when they are uncovered. Individual chapters discuss excavation and conservation, environmental and soil issues, deterioration, identification and condition assessment, detachment and removal, initial cleaning, coverings and shelters, packing, and documentation. There are also eight appendixes.

Geared primarily for professionals engaged in the physical practice of excavation, this book will also interest archaeologists, archaeological conservators, site managers, conservation scientists, museum curators, and students of archaeology and conservation.

Corrado Pedelì is senior conservator/restorer with the Superintendence for Cultural Heritage of the Aosta Valley Regional Administration in Italy. Stefano Pulga is a freelance restorer based in Aosta. Erik Risser is assistant conservator in the Department of Antiquities at the J. Paul Getty Museum.

“Given the book’s easily accessible format and language, this book offers insight for archaeologists, site managers, conservation scientists, curators and heritage students.”
Journal of the Institute of Conservation

168 pages
7 5/8 x 10 3/8 inches
88 b/w illustrations
ISBN 978-1-60606-158-9

Getty Publications
Imprint: Getty Conservation Institute