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The Institute for Conservation and Restoration operates at the interface of various scientific and artistic disciplines. Its activities are aimed at accomplishing the complex task of preserving artworks and cultural assets for future generations in a condition corresponding as far as possible to the original or an authentic state to counteract their decay through aging processes or inadvertent damage. This objective ensures the future influence of artistic manifestations and the preservation of cultural heritage for posterity.

Students learn to proceed responsibly on all levels: perception, description, and research for understanding a work’s historical and artistic significance, its documentation, and its interpretation based on a materials science analysis constitute the foundation for interventions and strategies of conservation in such diverse fields as painting/sculpture, murals/architectural surfaces, moveable and immovable wooden objects, as well as musical instruments and papers/books/archival materials.

The conservation - restoration of modern and contemporary art is a subject of its own: students learn to cope with the manifold challenges one is confronted with when dealing with contemporary art productions and concerning oneself with their preservation. The expansion of approaches beyond the specifics of traditional media and techniques ranges from issues of ephemeral art, installations, and performances to time-based media and requires non the least intense communication with the artists. The curriculum includes conservation commissions and research activities carried out in cooperation with public and private clients.