Heritage conservation – the 3 most important concepts: preventive conservation, remedial conservation and restoration


Doubts often arise as to the terms used to describe the set of interventions that we intend to carry out in heritage conservation , often confusing what are conservation and restoration treatments.

And it is these concepts that we will start by clarifying.

  • Preventive Conservation
  • Remedial conservation
  • Restoration

Heritage Conservation

What is “Conserving”?Online course Preventive Conservation

A quick search in the dictionary tells us that conserving translates to “Keeping [something] in good condition”.

Therefore, we can consider Conservation as a discipline that encompasses several levels of intervention, each one with certain specificities, all of them aiming to preserve one or more objects.

Within the area of ​​Conservation we can distinguish:

– Preventive conservation;

– Remedial conservation;

– Restoration.

Heritage Conservation – Preventive conservation

Preventive conservation interventions have as main objective to create conditions that help to prevent the occurrence of damages or losses in the assets and contribute to slow down the pace of aging of the materials.

Some examples of preventive conservation interventions are:

– the cleaning of books / documents and the spaces where they circulate and are stored;

– the correct handling and packaging of books and documents;

– the control of the surrounding environmental conditions, such as temperature and relative humidity levels.

Although preventive conservation interventions generally do not produce visible results on the pieces, these preventive actions are absolutely essential to keep the collections in good condition, avoiding damage, losses and unnecessary expenses with deeper and more intrusive interventions.

Advantages of Preventive Heritage Conservation

Heritage conservation - Preventive

Heritage Conservation – Interventional Conservation

In the event that damage has already occurred or there is damage in progress, interventional conservation measures can be applied that helpPreservation of books and documents online course to stop degradation processes and stabilize the material, thereby reducing the risk of further damage.

This type of intervention can be essential to maintain the cohesion of the various elements of a book, for example, until the intention is to eventually carry out a more in-depth intervention (restoration).

These interventions work as “first aid”.

Some examples of interventional heritage conservation interventions are:

– the planning of folded sheets,

– the consolidation of fragile areas of paper,

– repair of paper tears,

– the reintegration of detached sheets and bindings,

– deacidification.


Restoration is a term often used to refer to conservation and restoration interventions in general.Conservation of ceramics online course

However, the restoration has as its main objective specifically to return the original appearance and / or function, in part or in full, of the material to be restored.

Some examples of restoration interventions in books and graphic documents are:

– re-binding,

– filling in gaps (on sheets or in the binding),

– the revival of texts and illustrations.

In other materials like ceramics, for example:

– removal of old restorations that compromise the stability of the ceramic piece.

– reintegration of glaze gaps.

– gluing of detached fragments.


By clicking on the link below you can analyze the specifications related to these concepts on the website of the ICOM (International Council of Museums):

Get to know the online courses about Heritage Conservation


  • zoritoler imol
    19/04/2022 12:10

    You actually make it seem so easy together with your presentation however I to find this matter to be really something which I feel I would never understand. It kind of feels too complex and extremely huge for me. I’m looking forward to your next publish, I will attempt to get the hang of it!

  • graliontorile
    19/04/2022 16:08

    Hiya, I am really glad I’ve found this information. Today bloggers publish just about gossips and net and this is really frustrating. A good blog with interesting content, this is what I need. Thank you for keeping this site, I will be visiting it. Do you do newsletters? Can’t find it.

  • 金万达
    16/05/2022 20:19

    Today a reader,tomorrow a leader!