WHAT IS MEANT BY RESTORATION?
Are we sure we know everything about the world of restoration? Just like artistic techniques, the art of restoration has its own history and development over the centuries, up to the present day when it becomes a real profession. By restoration we mean that activities connected with the maintenance, recovery and conservation of works of art, cultural heritage, monuments and historical art crafts, to which a particular value is recognized. The restorer, therefore, not only has the task of intervening on the artworks that are now compromised or damaged, but also of taking care of their conservation over time. Restoration is – as stated by Cesare
Brandi in his Theory of Restoration – the methodological moment of recognition of the work of art, in its physical consistency and in its dual aesthetic and historical polarity, with a view to its transmission to the future.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN RESTORE AND REPAIR?
In restoration, everything revolves around value: both the intrinsic characteristics of the object and the cultural structure of the person dealing with it are fundamental. The recognition of the value of each object is, therefore, preparatory to the activity of restoration. The one who “brings back to life” a valuable artwork can therefore be defined as a restorer.
WHO IS THE RESTORER?
The work of the restorer is divided into several phases: first of all, he must carry out a very accurate assessment of the condition of the work, i.e. analyze the deterioration, evaluate to what extent it is possible to intervene without risking further damage to the work, discover the history of the work, in order to better plan the methods of intervention and evaluate the different possibilities. It is a profession in which passion is one of the essential driving forces, because we are dealing with an extremely delicate job and with a very strong individual component. Obviously, passion must be accompanied by excellent dexterity and an above-average artistic sense, personal dispositions which, however, can be refined in studies.
Choosing not to rely on competent people can involve various risks: the loss of the value of the work (and not the increase), the risk of ruining the work or, in the worst case, of doing it wrong, since these operations are very accurate.
WHERE CAN WORKS OF ART AND ARTIFACTS BE RESTORED?
The reference point for restoring works of art or artifacts are the restoration laboratories. The size of the space is not important, but that there is all the necessary equipment which, combined with the experience of the restorer, will contribute to the “rebirth” of the artwork.
Zanini Arte was founded in 1914, initially as a restoration laboratory. Crossing the threshold of one hundred years since its foundation and ranking as the oldest Artisan Workshop of San Benedetto Po, one of the most beautiful villages in Italy and Jewel of Italy Municipality 2012. The Zanini Arte workshop as well as for private clients, follows institutional commissions, such as the restoration of the portal of the Basilica del Polirone, an excellence of the history of local art from the Renaissance period, which sees the hand of Giulio Romano.
After more than one hundred years, the laboratory continues its activity uninterruptedly, handed down from father to son, with consultancy and restoration for the maintenance and conservation of works of art: furniture, sculpture and ancient tables.