Publication of ICOMOS University Forum Volume 1 on Authenticity and Reconstructions

Article Index

ICOMOS Reconstruction Workshop March 2017 Group Photo small

ICOMOS has released the first volume of its International University Forum's scientific output. The papers in this collection derive from the international ICOMOS University Forum Workshop on Authenticity and Reconstructions held 13–15 March 2017 at ICOMOS International Headquarters in Paris, France. The meeting constituted a pilot project of the new ICOMOS University Forum to stimulate dialogues between academics and heritage experts. Accordingly, this is the first volume of the new ICOMOS University Forum Results.

The full title of the workshop was “A contemporary provocation: reconstructions as tools of future-making”. This topic is timely indeed. With the recent destructions of cultural heritage in the Middle East on our minds and a widely shared concern for the future development of areas affected by a high loss of human lives, religious extremism, political instability, large numbers of refugees and the catastrophic outcomes of war, the question of future reconstructions of destroyed cultural heritage has become critical.

Given that ruins and the heritage of war are both significant parts of cultural inheritance, and form an essential element in the mental landscape of peoples, the following questions arise: can the reconstruction of such inheritance play an important role in the process of re-building society in the wake of destructive events? Could reconstructions be seen as manifestations of desirable futures and tools of future-making? And what is the relationship of the reconstructed artefact with the inherited artefact?

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