In January 2003, Dr. Giacomo Chiari joined the staff of the Getty Conservation Institute as chief scientist. He assumes overall responsibility for the Institute's Science group, which includes research sections devoted to building materials, collections and museum research, analytical technologies, and environmental science.
Dr. Chiari comes to the GCI from the University of Turin in Italy, where he was a professor of applied mineralogy. He has had a distinguished career in mineralogy, devoting most of the last 25 years to research regarding the conservation of cultural heritage. His scientific contributions to the field include extensive work in crystallography, seminal research into the chemical and mineralogical characterization of earthen building materials and methods for their treatment, and the development of methods for dating mural paintings and identifying their pigments. In addition, he has worked on an array of important works of art and architecture, including Michelangelo's Last Judgment in the Sistine Chapel, the sites of Pompeii and Herculaneum, the earthen architecture of the Hadramawt region of Yemen, the painted reliefs of the Huaca de la Luna in Peru, and the World Heritage City of Trinidad, Cuba.