||Recognizing the contribution of individuals and institutions who, in the course of three years, have participated in the preparations of the International Conference on Conservation “Kraków 2000” and its Plenary Session “Cultural Heritage as the Foundation of the Development of Civilisation”,
We, the participants of the International Conference on Conservation “Kraków 2000”, conscious of the profound meanings associated with cultural heritage, submit the following principles to those responsible for heritage as a guideline for the efforts to safeguard such principles.
Acting in the spirit of the Charter of Venice, taking note of the international recommendations and urged on by the process of European unification, at the turn of the new millennium, we are consciuos of living within such a framework, in which identities, in an ever more extensive context, are becoming characterized and more distinct. Europe today is characterized by a cultural diversity and thus by the plurality of fundamental values related to the mobile, immobile and intellectual heritage, the different meanings associated with it and consequently also conflicts of interest. This obliges all those responsible for safeguarding cultural heritage to become increasingly attentive to the problems and choices they need to face in pursuing their objectives.
Each community, by means of its collective memory and consciousness of its past, is responsible for the identification as well as the management of its heritage. This cannot be difined in a fixed way. One can only define the way in which the heritage may be identified. Plurality in society entails a great diversity in heritage concepts as conceived by the entire community. The monuments, as individual elements of this heritage, are bearers of values, which may change in time. This variability of the individual values of monuments, constitutes “each time” the specificity of the heritage. From this process of change, each community develops an awareness and consciousness of the need to look after the individual built elements as bearers of their own common heritage values.
The tools and methods are developed for appropriate preservation and should be adapted to the evolving situations, which are subjected to the process of continual change. The particular context of selecting these values requires the preparation of a conservation plan and a series of decisions. These should be codified in a restoration project according to the appropriate technical and structural criteria.
Conscious of the profound values of the Charter of Venice and working towards the same aims, we propose the same principles for conservation and restoration of the built heritage in our time.
AIMS AND METHODS
1.The architectural, urban and landscape heritage, as well as artefacts, are the result of an identification with various associated moments in history and social-cultural context. The conservation of this heritage is our aim.
Conservation can be realised by different types of interventions such as environmental control, maintenance, repair, restoration, renovation and rehabilitation. Any intervention implies decisions, selections and responsibilities related to the complete heritage, also to those parts that may not have a specific meaning today, but might have one in the future.
Maintenance and repairs are a fundamental part of the process of heritage conservation. These actions have to be organised with systematic research, inspection, control, monitoring and testing. Possible decay has to be forseen and reported on, and appropriate preventive measures have to be taken.
3.The conservation of built heritage is implemented by the project of restoration, including the strategy to conserve in the long run. This restoration project should be based on a range of appropriate technical options and prepared in a cognitive process of gathering knowledge and understanding of the building or site. This process may include traditional and subsequent new materials, structural investigations, graphical and dimensional analysis and the identification of historical, artistic and socio-cultural significance. All pertinent disciplines have to participate in the restoration project and the co-ordination should be carried out by a person qualified and well trained in conservation and restoration.
The reconstruction of entire parts “in the style of the building” should be avoided. Reconstruction of very small parts having architectural significance can be acceptable as an exception on condition that it is based on precise and indisputable documentation.
If necessary, for a proper use of the building, completion of more extensive spatial and functional parts should reflect contemporary architecture. Reconstruction of an entire building, destroyed by armed conflict or natural disaster, is only acceptable if there are exceptional social or cultural motives that are related to the identity of the entire community.
DIFFERENT KINDS OF BUILT HERITAGE
Any intervention involving the archeological heritage, due to its vulnerability, should be strictly related to its surroundings, territory and landscape. The destructive aspects of the excavation should be reduced as far as possible. At each excavation, the archeological work must be fully documented.
As in all other cases, conservation work on archeological finds must be based on the principle of minimum intervention. This must be done by professionals and methodology and techniques used must be strictly controlled.
In the protection and public presentation of archeological sites, the use of modern technologies, databanks, information system and virtual presentation techniques should be promoted.
The purpose of conservation of historic buildings and monuments, whether in the urban or rural context, is to maintain their authenticity and integrity, including internal spaces, furnishings and decoration according to their original appearance. Such conservation requires an appropriate “project of restoration” that defines the methods and aims. In many cases, it also requires an appropriate use, compatible with the existing space and significance. Work on historic buildings must pay full attention to all the periods that are present.
Architectural decoration, sculpture and artefacts that are an integrated part of the built heritage should be preserved through a specific project connected to the general project. This presupposes that the restorer has the proper knowledge and training in addition to the cultural, technical and operating capacity to interpret the different analyses of the specific artistic field. The restoration process must guarantee a correct approach to the conservation of the full setting decoration or sculpture, with respects to traditional building crafts and their necessary integration as a substantial part of the built heritage.
Historic towns and villages, in their territorial setting, represent an essential part of our universal heritage, and should be seen as a whole with the structures, spaces and human factors, normally in the process of continuous evolution and change. This involves all sectors of the population, and requires an integrated planning process, consisting of a wide range of different activities. Conservation in the urban context deals with ensembles of building and open spaces, which are part of larger urban areas, or of entire small urban or rural settlements, including intangible values. In this context, intervention consists of referring to the city in its morphological, functional and structural whole, as part of its territory, its environment and surrounding landscape. The buildings that form historic areas may not have a special architectural value in themselves, but they should be safeguarded because of their organic unity, distinctive dimensions, and their technological, spatial, decorative and chromatic characteristics as connecting elements, irreplaceable in the organic unity of the town.
The restoration project of the historic town or village should anticipate the management of change, in addition to verifying the sustainability of selected options, linking heritage issues with social and economic aspects. Apart from obtaining knowledge of the structure, there is the need for a study of the influences of changes and tools required for the management process. The project of restoration for historic areas regards the buildings of the urban fabric in their twofold function: a) the elements that define the spaces of the city within its urban form, and b) the internal spacial arrangements that are an essential part of the building.
Landscapes as cultural heritage result from and reflect a prolonged interaction in different societies between man, nature, and the physical environment. They are testimony to the evolving relationship of communities, individuals and their environment. In this context their conservation, preservation and development focus on human and natural features, integrating material and intangible values. It is important to understand and respect the character of landscapes, and apply appropriate laws and norms to harmonize relevant territorial functions with essential values. In many societies, landscapes are historically related to urban territories and influences.
The integration of cultural landscape conservation, and the sustainable development of regions and localities with ecological activities, and the natural environment requires awareness and understanding of relationships over time.
This involves making links with the built environment of the metropolis, city and town.
Integrated conservation of fossil and archeological landscapes, and the development of a highly dynamic landscape, involves social, cultural and esthetic values.
Conservation/preservation techniques should be strictly tied to interdisciplinary scientific research on materials and technologies used for the construction, repair and/or restoration of the building heritage. The chosen intervention should respect the original function and ensure compatibility with existing materials, structures and architectural values. Any new materials and technologies should be rigorously tested, compared and understood before application. Although the in situ application of new techniques may be relevant to the continued well-being of original fabric, they should be continually monitored in the light of the achieved results, taking into account their behavior over time and the possibility of eventual reversibility.
Particular attention is required to improve our knowledge of traditional materials and techniques, and their appropriate continuation in the context of modern society, being in themselved important components of cultural heritage.
11.The management of dynamic change, transformation and development of historic cities and the cultural heritage in general, consists of appropriate regulation, making choices and monitoring outcomes. As an essential part of this process, it is necessary to identify risks, anticipate appropriate prevention systems, and create emergency plans of action. Cultural tourism, beside its positive aspects on the local community, should be considered as such a risk. Attention should also be paid to the optimisation of running costs.
Conservation of cultural heritage should be an integral part of the planning and management processes of a community, as it can contribute to the sustainable, qualitative, economic and social developments of that society.
The plurality of heritage values and diversity of interests necessitates a communication structure that allows, in addition to specialists and administrators, an effective participation of inhabitants in the process. It is the responsibilities of the communities to establish appropriate methods and structures to ensure true participation of individuals and institutions in the decision-making process.
TRAINING AND EDUCATION
Training and education in cultural heritage matters requires social involvement and integration into national systems of education at all levels. The complexity of a restoration project, or any other conservation intervention, involving historical, technical, cultural and economic aspects requires the appointment of a competent and well educated leader.
Education of the conservators must be interdisciplinary and involve accurate study of architectural history, theories and techniques of conservation. This should assure the appropriate qualifications necessary to resolve research problems needed to carry out conservation and restoration interventions in a professional and responsible way.
The training of professionals and technicians in the conservation disciplines should take full account of evolving methodologies and technical knowledge, and be aware of the on-going debate on conservation theories and policies.
The quality of craft and technical work during restoration projects should also be enhanced by improved vocational training.
The protection and conservation of the built heritage could be better enabled if greater legal and administrative actions are taken. This should be aimed at ensuring the conservation work is only undertaken by, or under the supervision of, conservation professionals.
Legal regulations might also make provisions for a period of practical experience in a structured programme.
Consideration should be given to newly-trained conservators obtaining a permit for indipendent practice. This should be gained under the supervision of conservation professionals.
The redaction committee of this “Charter of Kraków” used the following terminological concepts:
Heritage is that complex of man’s works in which a community recognises its particular and specific values and with which it identifies. Identification and specification of heritage is therefore a process related to the choice of values.
Monument: A monument is an entity identified as a bearers of worth and forming a support to memory. In it, memory recognises aspects that are pertinent to human deeds and thoughts, associated with the historic time line. This may still be within our reach.
Authenticity means the sum of substantial, historically ascertained characteristics; from the original up to the current state, as an outcome of the various trasformations that have occurred over time.
Identity is understood as the common reference of both present values generated in the sphere of a community and past values identified in its authenticity.
Conservation: Conservation is the complex of attitudes of a community that contributes to making the heritage and its monuments endure. Conservation is achieved with reference to the significance of the entity, with its associated values.
Restoration: Restoration is an operation directed on a heritage property, aiming at the conservation of its authenticity and its appropriation by the community.
Project and restoration: The project, resulting from the choice of conservation policies, is the process through which conservation of the built heritage and landscape is carried out.