Convening and Facilitating Professional Meetings

The third component of the project has involved convening meetings and conferences and disseminating information to further an understanding of the needs of the field and provide a forum for professional discussion of mosaic conservation.

Ninth ICCM Conference (2005)
Formed in 1977, the International Committee for the Conservation of Mosaics (ICCM) is the only international organization devoted to mosaic conservation. One of its main activities has been to convene a conference every three years, which provides the principal forum for professionals in this field of conservation. The published results of these conferences are an essential source of information about mosaic conservation. The GCI coorganized the sixth ICCM conference held in Nicosia, Cyprus, in 1996.

The ICCM held its ninth triennial conference in 2005 in Hammamet, Tunisia. The event was coorganized by the GCI and the Institut National du Patrimoine of Tunisia. Two hundred and fifty participants were in attendance and over sixty papers and posters were presented.

The theme of the conference was Lessons Learned: Reflecting on the Theory and Practice of Mosaic Conservation, pertaining to all aspects of mosaic conservation:

  • training;
  • in situ conservation;
  • interventions such as sheltering, treatments, reburial, and lifting and relaying;
  • documentation;
  • presentation;
  • maintenance; and
  • site management.

The conference was aimed at professionals in the conservation of ancient mosaics, as well as art historians and archaeologists of the Roman world. A particular focus of the ninth conference was encouraging the involvement of conservation professionals from the Arab world. This event marked a unique opportunity to discuss the conservation issues faced in the Arab world, a region rich in Roman mosaics.

In the closing session of the conference, the ICCM Board put forth two general recommendations, and on the final afternoon of the conference, an overview was presented of the main recommendations that emerged during the thematic sessions. The proceedings from the Ninth ICCM Conference were published in 2008. (See Related Materials).

Mosaics Panel, Reburial Colloquium (2003)

In 2003 a colloquium on reburial of archaeological sites was organized by the GCI in partnership with the U.S. National Park Service (Intermountain Region) and ICCROM, held in Santa Fe, New Mexico, March 16-21, 2003. The purpose of the colloquium was to gather together professionals from conservation—as well as allied fields such as soil sciences, engineering, and biodeterioration—who have been involved in planning and implementing reburial strategies or who could contribute to a discussion of reburial as a method of protecting exposed archaeological remains. Four themes, with a broad geographical scope, ranged from decision-making to technical matters. Theme Three consisted of case studies of reburial interventions and included a panel focused on the reburial of ancient floor mosaics. Selected papers from the colloquium were published in a special issue of the journal, Conservation and Management of Archaeological Sites, in cooperation with ICCROM (Vol. 6, nos. 3-4, 2004). Together, the three papers on reburial of mosaics provide a comprehensive overview of how reburial of mosaics has been practiced, the problems encountered, and the challenges to be met. (See Related Materials).

Experts Meeting in Cyprus (2002)
A meeting of international experts on the conservation of ancient mosaics was co-organized by the Getty Conservation Institute and the Archaeological Research Unit, University of Cyprus in Nicosia, June 11-14, 2002. The purpose of the meeting was to bring together professionals who are committed to the conservation of ancient mosaics to discuss existing needs in the field, current initiatives, and opportunities for fostering research and establishing collaborative projects. It was intended that the meeting would provide an opportunity for a substantive exchange on how professionals and organizations involved in mosaics conservation could forge stronger relationships and work in a more integrated way. The meeting was attended by twenty-three professionals from eleven countries, mainly in Europe and the Mediterranean region. Resulting from the discussions was a series of strategies to address areas of weakness; these formed the basis for subsequent activities of the Mosaics in Situ project. The participants also issued a concluding statement.

Page updated: November 2009

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