SUMMER SCHOOL of updating and specialization in the conservation of the archival heritage

Our Association has always been involved in the training in the training and transmission of knowledge and know-how. The Italian Code of Cultural Heritage and Landscape clearly articulates the conservation of cultural heritage as a “coherent, coordinated and planned activity of study, prevention, maintenance and restoration” (art.29, c.1). Among them, “maintenance and restoration […] are carried out exclusively by those who are restorers of cultural heritage” (art.29, c.6).

In addition to the basic training course, which the Cultural Heritage Code itself entrust to schools and training centres specifically accredited by the Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities (MiBACT) in agreement with the Ministry of University and Research (MIUR), the essential baggage for the professional growth of restorers and restorative collaborators is constituted by the experience of permanent updating that allow them to face the principles of restoration as well as to master and apply intervention methods – both traditional and innovative – testing their effectiveness and invasivness.

In this perspective we have promoted, in collaboration with the Humanities Department, Master Degree in History and Management of the Archival and Bibliographic Heritage of the Ca’ Foscari University, Venice, a SUMMER SCHOOL for updating and improving the conservation of archival heritage as part of the “Archiporto Project: the archives of the Thiene Castle in the network of Vicenza archivessupported by the Cariverona Foundation, in partnership with the Bertoliana Public Library , Vicenza, the Castle of Thiene, the Central FIES art work space / Fies Core, Dro (Trento), the Iuav University of Venice, MeLa MediaLab.

Under this three-year project (2018-2020),  the study, census, conservation, digitization, networking and enhancement of one of the most important family archives in Veneto, kept at the Castle of Thiene, will be carried out. The initiative is intended for updating and specialization of operators of archival heritage conservation.  The maximum number of participants admitted is 15.  

The Summer School develops on 150 hours over 4 intensive weeks (Monday 10th   June to Friday 5th July 2019, daily lessons 9.00 to 13.00 and 14.00 to 17.30) at the European Centre for the Heritage Crafts in Villa Fabris, Thiene (Vicenza, Italy). It addresses all those having a basic training in the field of conservation and restoration of archival and book materials. The course, divided into theoretical lessons (60 hours) and practical laboratory activities (90 hours) focuses on the following topics:

  • history and events of the archival fund;
  • aspects of theory and history of the restoration of archival and book heritage;
  • history, manufacturing techniques and analytical study of archival materials;
  • principles of chemistry applied to conservation;
  • methods and techniques of restoration and long-term conservation. 

Being a course of improvement and professional updating, innovative procedures for the field and, in particular, the application of nanotechnologies will also be proposed and tested (in terms of effectiveness and invasivness).  Lectures will be articulated in frontal teaching and in practical demonstrations aiming at the observation of the original material belonging to the archive, the use of non-invasive investigation techniques to evaluate the condition of conservation and specific operations.  In the lab (90 hours) the participants will face direct interventions, individually and in groups, on the documents of the Castello Porto-Colleoni-Thiene archive having conservation problems, dealt with during the theoretical lessons. 

Summer School calendar 

I week
Monday, June 10
h 9.00 to 9.45
Opening of the Summer School and welcome to participants
h 10.00 to 13.00
Castle of Thiene
The family archive of the Thiene Castle and the Archiporto project
h 14.00 to 17.30
Melania Zanetti
The preservation of the archival heritage: principles and considerations
Tuesday, June 11
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Carlo Federici
Ezio Ornato
The handmade paper and the stages of its geochronological evolution
Wednesday, June 12
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Melania Zanetti
Organization of laboratories and planning of activities.
Examination of materials from the Castle of Thiene Archive
Thursday, June 13
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Alfonso Zoleo
Mechanisms of paper degradation
Friday, June 14
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Alfonso Zoleo
Analysis techniques applied to paper degradation

II week
Monday, June 17
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Restoration lab
Tuesday, June 18
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Giovanna Poggi
Alkaline nanoparticles for deacidification
Wednesday, June 19
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Giovanna Poggi
Gel and nanofluids for cleaning paper supports
Thursday, June 20
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Restoration lab
Friday, June 21
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Restoration lab

III week
Monday, June 24
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Francesca Pascalicchio
Scrolls in the archive: characterization and properties
Tuesday, June 25
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Francesca Pascalicchio
Scrolls in the archive: investigation techniques to assess the state of conservation
Wednesday, June 26
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Restoration lab
Thursday, June 27
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Restoration lab
Friday, June 28
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Restoration lab

IV week
Monday, July 1
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Claudia Benvestito
Roll-shaped materials: conservative alternatives and storage solutions
Tuesday, July 2
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Claudia Benvestito
Roll-shaped materials: conservative alternatives and storage solutions
Wednesday, July 3
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Restoration lab
Thursday, July 4
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Restoration lab
Friday, July 5
h 9.30 – 13 and 14 – 17.30
Final test and conclusion of the Summer School

The Teaching Body
Claudia Benvestito   Graduated in Literature, she trained at the European Specialist Training Course for Conservators-Restorers of Library Heritage in Spoleto between 1992 and 1995.
Since 1999, she is employed at the Restoration Laboratory of the Marciana National Library in Venice. She deals with the restoration and conservation of the materials of the Library. She studies and creates multifunctional containers for the Library, valid for preserving, consulting and exhibiting book assets, and other unconventional conservative solutions. She takes care of the design of display supports and is in charge with exhibitions in the Sansovino Library.

Carlo Federici  He is involved in the field of archival and book heritage conservation since 1974. He was director of the Angelica Library(1990-1992), of the Central Institute of Book Pathology (1992-2002) and of the Library Structure and Documentary Systems of the Lombardy Region (2003-2005). Author of about 200 publications, he has taught at the Catholic University of Milan and the University of Padua. He is currently Professor of Conservation of Archival and Book Material at the Ca ’Foscari University of Venice and Conservation and of Book Restoration at the Vatican School of Library Science  in Rome

Ezio Ornato   Directeur honoraire at the CNRS, where he carried out his entire scientific career, his research first concerned the history of French Humanism and the manuscript tradition of Ciceronian orations, then the medieval manuscript, the incunabulum and the paper, giving a crucial impulse to the application of quantitative methods to the history of book. In particular, he devoted a great number of studies to paper, including the two volumes on the Western Charter in the late Middle Ages, promoted by the Institute of Book Pathology (now ICRCPAL) at the end of the 1990s.

Francesca Pascalicchio  Graduated in Natural Sciences, she worked as a diagnostician at the Central Institute for Restoration and Conservation of Archival and Book Heritage (ICRCPAL) in Rome from 1985 to 2018, directing its technology laboratory from 2014 to 2018. She devoted herself to studying the constituent materials of books and documents, their properties and characteristics and production technologies, with particular regard to paper and parchment. She taught Materials Technology (paper and wood, parchment and leather) at the ICRCPAL High School from 2010 to 2017 .

Giovanna Poggi  she took a PhD in Sciences for Cultural Heritage at the University of Florence. She is currently a research fellow at the CSGI and Department of Chemistry of the same university, where she is involved in the development of nanomaterials for the conservation of cultural heritage. Her research activity mainly concerns the synthesis and characterization of nanophase systems for cellulosic-based materials and, recently, the development of gel for the cleaning of works of art.

Melania Zanetti   Graduated in Conservation of Cultural Heritage at the University of Udine, she graduated in 1995 at the European course of specialist training for conservators-restorers of archival and library assets in Spoleto and opened her own Studio Res in Padua. Since then, she has been designing and implementing conservation interventions for libraries, archives and museums. Since 2000 she has been teaching “Theory and history of restoration” at the Catholic University of Milan and since 2010 she has been professor of “Book and document restoration” at the Ca ’Foscari University of Venice. Since 2013 she presides over the Italian Association of Conservatories and Restorers of Archives and Libraries (AICRAB).

Alfonso Zoleo   University researcher confirmed at the Department of Chemical Sciences of Padua since 2010, since 2008 he mainly deals with spectroscopic methods applied to cultural heritage, with particular reference to the archival and book heritage. He collaborates with national and international experts in the sector, he is a member of the interdepartmental research centre “Study and conservation of archaeological, architectural and historical-artistic heritage” – CIBA of the University of Padua, carrying out pre-restoration and cognitive research on various works gender, for public bodies (superintendencies) and private individuals. It has dozens of scientific publications including cultural heritage, in particular paper materials.

Those interested in participating in the Summer School are invited to send the attached form (preregistration form), duly filled in, providing all the necessary information (curriculum vitae and studiorum, experience, participation in projects in the field of preservation of archival and book heritage, etc.) by 26 April 2019 to the email address  for evaluation by Selection Commission, in charge with drawing up a list of admitted to the course.

The theoretical lessons will be open to the participation of archivists, librarians, restorers and interested students.Those wishing to attend these lectures are invited to send the attached form (theoretical lessons admission form) duly filled in, by 26 April 2019 to the email address 

Final exam and certificate of attendance
At the end of the Summer School, a certificate of participation will be issued upon successful completion of a final exam which will consist in the presentation of a paper on one of the topics dealt with during the course. To be admitted to the final exam it will be necessary to have attended at least 90% of the lessons and laboratory exercises.
Students admitted to the Summer School will be recognized by the University Ca ‘Foscari, Department of Humanities 6 ECTS (University Credits) as an internship.
The certificate of participation will specify the program of the training modules as well as a certificate of attendance will be issued also to those attending the theoretical lessons.

Participation fee
The participation fee amounts to 2,000.00 euros and includes attendance at lectures, use of laboratory equipment and instruments, exercises materials, insurance costs, and accommodation in the Villa Fabris guesthouse.
Thanks to a contribution from the Cariverona Foundation, partially covering the costs, the individual fee requested to the participants is € 500.00 (+ VAT).
Registrations cannot exceed 15 participants.

Attendance at lectures is free and will be admitted all those who registered by sending the form. Due to the limited capacity of the classroom, the priority criterion is the chronological order of form reception.
Lessons are in Italian.

Admission procedure
On the basis of the information transmitted, the Selection Commission will draw up, according to its own unquestionable judgment, a ranking of those admitted to the course and to attend theoretical lessons.
The Commission is composed by Melania Zanetti, president, Carlo Federici and Alberto Finozzi.

For further information, please contact:
via Trieste 43 – Thiene (VI)
(Monday – Friday 8am-1pm / 2pm-5.30pm)
Telephone 0445.372329
email:  –

Lecture admission form
Summer School preregistration form
Summer School Calendar




Corso trimestrale sulla conservazione della pietra e degli stucchi: possibilità di richiedere una borsa di studio di €. 8.400,00

E’ stato riaperto, per i soli settori della conservazione della pietra e degli stucchi,  il termine per concorrere all’assegnazione di una borsa di studio di €. 8.400,00 messa a disposizione dalla Fondazione Villa Fabris di Thiene (VI) per poter partecipare al corso trimestrale di conservazione del patrimonio architettonico che avrà inizio presso il Centro Europeo di Villa Fabris il prossimo lunedì 4 settembre, per concludersi venerdì 1 dicembre 2017.

La nuova scadenza è fissata per il giorno lunedì 21 agosto 2017. La borsa di studio copre i costi relativi a tutte le lezioni (teoria, pratica, cantiere), i pranzi giornalieri dal lunedì al venerdì (sono escluse le cene e i fine settimana), le visite d’istruzione, il servizio di interpretariato, i costi assicurativi, i testi didattici,  l’uso delle attrezzature e del materiale, il pernottamento presso le foresterie del Centro.

Per partecipare al corso trimestrale di conservazione del patrimonio architettonico è necessario dimostrare di avere una formazione artigianale con almeno un anno di esperienza pratica sui cantieri nel campo della conservazione, oppure una formazione universitaria, tecnica o artistica, abilità manuali dimostrabili e almeno un anno di pratica  nel campo del restauro conservativo.

Per avere tutte le informazioni utili e scaricare la domanda di ammissione alla borsa di studio è possibile collegarsi al link:


Aperte le iscrizioni per il corso trimestrale di conservazione del patrimonio architettonico

Il corso trimestrale di conservazione del patrimonio architettonico edizione 2017 avrà inizio il giorno Lunedì 4 settembre e si concluderà il giorno Venerdì 1 dicembre.

La partecipazione al corso trimestrale ha un costo complessivo di €. 8.400,00. Continue reading Aperte le iscrizioni per il corso trimestrale di conservazione del patrimonio architettonico