cod. 1007891

Academic year 2019/20
3° year of course - First semester
Academic discipline
Chimica dell'ambiente e dei beni culturali (CHIM/12)
Attività formative affini o integrative
Type of training activity
30 hours
of face-to-face activities
6 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Learning objectives

The course intends to give the student, within the framework of the European descriptors for the three-year degrees (Dublin descriptors), the tools to develop the knowledge and the capacity to understand the pictorial artistic good, through the study of the materials Original, Degradation and restoration (1st descriptor-Knowledge and ability to understand).
At the end of the course the student must be able to: • Apply such knowledge and comprehension skills in addressing, with a professional approach and through the conception of arguments, different questions of knowledge of constituent materials A work of art, • Identification of the executive technique, • The processes of degradation that afflicge the pictorial works,
• Appropriate materials and techniques of intervention conservatively of a pictorial work,
• Elaboration of a conservative intervention protocol on the work of Art (2nd descriptor-Knowledge and comprehension skills applied);
• Independently collect and interpret articles, protocols of conservative interventions (3rd descriptor-autonomy of judgement);
• Communicating information, ideas, problems and solutions of conservation interventions of pictorial Works (4th Descriptor-communicative skills);
• Develop further learning skills necessary to undertake successive studies with a high degree of autonomy in the field of cultural heritage and, in particular, artistic (5th Descriptor-Ability to learn).


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Course unit content

The pictorial techniques over the centuries.
Structure and constituent materials of polychrome works.
Preventive conservation
Materials and methods for the conservation of paint works of art

Full programme

Painting techniques over the centuries
Structure and constituent materials of polychrome works.
• General information on painted surfaces.
• Description of pictorial techniques.
• Characteristics and chemical composition of organic materials
– proteins;
– Siccatives oils;
– Polysaccharide binders;
– Animal and plant waxes;
– Natural plant and animal resins
• The processes of alteration of organic pictorial materials
• Investigation techniques to characterize organic pictorial materials.
• Organic pigments and dyes
• Case studies
• Preventive storage
The "cleaning" of the paintings: the risk of interaction with the materials of the work


L. Campanella, A. Casoli, M.P. Colombini, R. Marini Bettolo, M. Matteini, L. M. Migneco, A. Montenero, L. Nodari, C. Piccioli, M. Plossi Zappala’, G. Portalone, U. Russo, M. P. Sammartino, Chimica per l'arte, Zanichelli editore, 2007 .

Teaching methods

Classroom lectures, with powerpoint projections (sources, works of art, video, documentaries). Powerpoint slideshows containing images and sources shown during frontal lessons are available at the end of the course on the platform for blended learning Elly DUSIC).

Assessment methods and criteria

The interview (about 20/30 minutes) focuses on the entire exam program and intends to verify the knowledge acquired by the student.
According to the Italian university system, the evaluation will be expressed in thirtieth (30/30). The minimum assessment threshold shall be 18/30; The votes obtained below this threshold are not recorded and the student is invited to reintroduce themselves to the next call.
A failure assessment is determined by: 1. Lack of knowledge of the minimum contents of the course; 2. The inability to express themselves adequately; 3. The lack of autonomous preparation; 4. The inability to solve problems related to information retrieval and analysis; 5. The inability to make judgements autonomously and to communicate the contents relating to the course. A sufficient assessment (18-23/30) is determined by an acceptable level of performance by the student of the evaluation indicators listed above. The average scores (24-27/30) are attributed to the student who proves that they have a more than sufficient (24-25/30) or Good (26-27/30) level of the evaluation indicators listed above. The highest scores (from 28/30 to 30/30 and Lode) are awarded to students who demonstrate an excellent to excellent level based on the rating indicators listed above.

Other information

Expected Learning Outcomes
To be able to evaluate the possibilities present in the chemical field for a suitable knowledge and valorization (preservation, recovery) of the historical-artistic cultural heritage. Know how to distinguish materials according to the chemical composition. Know how to understand the strengths (inertia, stability) and weakness (reactivity, instability) of the materials. From the physico-chemical properties of the substances constituting the study materials know how to recognize and evaluate the state of preservation and the potential causes of degradation.