Sustainable Preservation Strategies for Street Art
Street art has been recognized part of our cultural heritage only in the latest years. The ephemeral character, free access, and exposure to the environment and anthropic actions, make public paintings vulnerable to neglect, removal, vandalism, and degradation. Beyond that, the strategies aimed at their preservation and fruition are rather unclear or lacking.
The project PRIN-2020 SUPERSTAR Sustainable Preservation Strategies for Street Art sets as a goal the definition of innovative guidelines for the preservation strategy of street art, aimed at safeguarding its powerful social and cultural message in the urban context. A combination of non-invasive and micro-invasive techniques are optimized to shed light on the chemical-physical properties and vulnerability aspects of modern paint materials that constitute street artworks. The studies performed in the laboratory on reference materials are supported by research performed on relevant case studies, located in different environmental urban contexts. The focus is on the materials used by the artists and the environmental risks and anthropic stresses.
Thanks to the strong collaboration between the partners with complementary expertise and with conservation institutions, the project will provide the following outputs: optimized innovative cleaning procedures for the restoration of outdoor murals and for the removal of vandalistic graffiti; selected protective coating materials with particular attention to durability aspects; and an integrated protocol for long-term sustainable monitoring and conservation.
The outputs will support institutions and entities engaged in safeguarding public urban art and in establishing preservation guidelines.
- Investigating street art materials and their susceptibility to the aggressive urban environment by innovative and optimized methods.
- Developing mitigating actions to reduce the impact of physical/chemical and environmental factors.
- Providing options and guidelines for preservation strategies.
- Developing of innovative cleaning solutions for the selective removal of surface deposits and unwanted graffiti.
- Implementing knowledge and technology-transfer of innovative preservation strategies to curators and conservators, heritage managers, and policymakers.