The Cultural Heritage Act and the Profession of Conservators-Restorers in Bulgaria Cover Image
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Законът за културното наследство и професията „реставратор” в България
The Cultural Heritage Act and the Profession of Conservators-Restorers in Bulgaria

Author(s): Ivan Vanev
Subject(s): Cultural history
Published by: Институт за изследване на изкуствата, Българска академия на науките

Summary/Abstract: The paper considers the development of conservation of cultural heritage in Bulgaria over the recent century focusing on specialized education and training, which ensures the competence of each conservator-restorer. The requirements for such education have been defined for decades now and provided for in various international documents. Reports from the 1920s and the 1930s kept at the archives of the National Archaeological Museum in Sofia show that even then specialized education and training and experience in the field were required for assigning conservation works. It is a well-known fact that the conservators-restorers working in Bulgaria in the first half of the twentieth century have acquired experience abroad through training in techniques and technologies of fine arts and follow-up-schooling at various conservation studios. In the 1960s, professionals, who have majored in conservation at European universities, commenced their work in Bulgaria. Specialized education here has been established in 1973. In defiance of the above, in 2009 a Cultural Heritage Act was adopted allowing for people without any such specialized education and training to undertake conservation projects. According to Article 165 of the Act, a public register of the persons entitled to undertake conservation projects was created. Over 400 individuals have been entered for the time being, who alongside the certified conservators-restorers, are legally capacitated not only to undertake conservation interventions but also to devise conservation programmes, lead projects, conserva- tion studios and labs. With this Act, the Ministry of Culture neglects the century-long his- tory of conservation in Bulgaria, making pointless four decades of educational tradition at the National Academy of Arts and putting in jeopardy the future of cultural heritage in Bulgaria.

  • Issue Year: 2013
  • Issue No: 3
  • Page Range: 3-6
  • Page Count: 6
  • Language: Bulgarian