10/12/2017 06:00 PM ISAW Lecture Hall

ARCE Lecture: Conserving Cairo 1882-2012

Nicholas Warner

This presentation offers a retrospective view of the history of architectural conservation in Cairo. Blessed, or perhaps cursed, with an astonishing number and variety of historic structures, Cairo has served as a physical laboratory for different conservation approaches from the time of the foundation of the "Committee for the Conservation of Monuments of Arab Art" in 1882 until the present. The lecture addresses many of these approaches ranging from "honest repair" to "Disney-esque" fabrication, and looks behind them to motivations that vary from the aesthetic to the commercial. Recent attempts to quantify Cairo’s architectural heritage, to devise strategies for its economically sustainable re-use, and to expand the scope of preservation efforts to include late-19th and early-20th century buildings will also be discussed in the context of recent civil conflict.
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