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059 - The Conservation of the Cultural Heritage in John Ruskin, 2013

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43rd International Seminar Kyoto University Human and Environmental Studies

The Conservation of the Cultural Heritage in John Ruskin

Professor Olimpia Niglio

May 23, 2013

Summary

English art critic John Ruskin (1819-1900) wrote in his famous book “The seven lamps of architecture” (1849): The true meaning of the word restoration is not always understood by the public or by those who have the care of public monuments. It means that the total destruction that a building can suffer is related to a destruction out of which no remnant can be gathered; a destruction accompanied by a false description of the thing destroyed. Prof. Niglio discusses this concept of restoration in the seminar while comparing it with other literary theories.