Materiales de Construcción, Vol 56, No 282 (2006)

Classification of multi-layered plaster in St. Abbondio Cloister at Como, Italy: an analytical tool for architectural archaeology


https://doi.org/10.3989/mc.2006.v56.i282.23

R. Bugini
CNR - ICVBC - Sezione ‘Gino Bozza’, Milano, Italy

S. Della Torre
Dipartimento BEST, Politecnico di Milano, Italy

A. Pozzi
Dipartimento di Scienze Chimiche e Ambientali, Università degli Studi dell’Insubria, Como, Italy

L. Rampazzi
Dipartimento di Scienze Chimiche e Ambientali, Università degli Studi dell’Insubria, Como, Italy

A. Sansonetti
CNR - ICVBC - Sezione ‘Gino Bozza’, Milano, Italy

Abstract


St. Abbondio, at Como, Italy, is one of the most outstandingRomanesque basilicas in Northern Italy. Theentire building, and particularly the cloister, has beenthe object of a number of restorations over the centuries,as well as a significant conservation endeavourconducted between 2000 and 2003. In the in-depthdiagnostic survey undertaken on that occasion, thecomposition and morphology of the plaster in bothinteriors and exteriors were determined to obtain furtherinsight into the history of the cloister and its conservation.Plaster representative of the various phasesof construction were characterized with techniquessuch as powder X-ray diffraction, mercury intrusionporosimetry, thin section optical microscopy and atomicspectrometry. As a result of these analyses, groupsof samples with similar characteristics could be identified,confirming historiographic hypotheses on thesequence of the restoration and conservation workdone on the building and establishing a possible toolfor architectural archaeology.

Keywords


plaster classification; architectural archaeology; St Abbondio Cloister (Como); historic plaster

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