GEO-SR –Multidisciplinary approach to alteration, alterability and conservation of Soares dos Reis’ geomaterial sculpture: breaking boundaries in museum paradigms and creating value in changing societies through culture

Research and Development
Main researcher: 
Eduarda Vieira

This project aims to fill a gap in scientific and technological knowledge regarding the material, conservative and symbolic components of 19th-century geomaterial sculpture, in museum and outdoor contexts through the study of 35 sculptures by António Soares dos Reis (1847-1889). GEO-SR responds to this main motto through the material characterization of marble, granite, plaster and clay sculptures, mainly belonging to the National Museum of Soares dos Reis, Porto, Portugal and by the innovative and sustainable experimentation of portable non-invasive analytical techniques used traditionally in the diagnosis of building anomalies (radiography, thermography and UPV). The team is led by CITAR (EA-UCP) and includes researchers from GeoBioTec (U. Aveiro), Center of Physics (U. Minho), Construct (FEUP-U.P) and the National Museum of Soares dos Reis (DGPC-MC). It is a purpose to define parameters of degradation and fragility of sculptural objects, comparing the degree of decay in materials, as well as indoors and outdoors environments’ influence. The gathered information will be applied in the elaboration of innovative, portable, non-invasive, objective and more affordable evaluation methods, which will make possible to redefine ethical issues and protocols for the conservation, exhibition, storage, handling, security and transportation of geomaterial sculpture. This will have repercussions in the economic activities of the business and industrial sectors that provide related products and services.

The project also includes the international partnerships of the Rodin and Camille Claudel Museums (France) and the National Gallery of Modern Art - Rome (Italy).

Research group: 
Heritage and Conservation-Restoration