Restorers prolong life of historical artifacts in labs

Restorers prolong life of historical artifacts in labs

BURSA - Anadolu Agency
Restorers prolong life of historical artifacts in labs

AA photo

The Bursa Restoration and Conservation Regional Directorate Laboratory, which serves in five Turkish cities, prolongs the life of historical artifacts at museums and preserves them for future generations. The restored artifacts are then delivered to museums, where they are displayed. 

Lab official Yasemin Dalgıç said there were 10 regional labs in Turkey working in affiliation with the Culture and Tourism Ministry. 

She said that the first lab was opened in Istanbul and then nine more labs began serving in the country after a cabinet decision in 2012. 

Dalgıç said they were restoring artifacts from museum displays and storage areas, adding, “Their age and material are not important. We do our best to prolong the life of all artifacts, regardless of if they are metal, earth, glass, textile or others. We have five restorers in the lab. We also restore earthenware artifacts which are on display at the Turkish Islamic Artifacts Museum in Bursa. We use updated materials to clean and restore them. We are working like doctors; they do their best to save the lives of patients and we do the same for the artifacts. We are historical artifacts doctors, we try to heal them.”

She said that one of the artifacts they were working on was a fire engine from the Ottoman era, adding that the piece from the 1800s had been on display at the Bandırma Archaeology Museum. 

Dalgıç said that not all of the artifacts came from museums, as ones found by treasure hunters or seized by officials were also brought to the lab for restoration. 

“We sometimes receive very precious artifacts such as diadems, rings or earrings found in graves. We find out that they date back 2,000-3,000 years ago,” she said. 

Dalgıç said that the restoration time of the artifacts changed according to their condition and style, adding, “For example, the fire engine has been with us for one year. We have been working on it for a long time because it is made of composite materials like metal and wood. But earthenware products may take only a few days.”