All Blog Posts

After 12 weeks of work, exchanges, discussions, and sites visits, the second training course of the WMF Cultural Heritage Conservation and Management Program was completed. The program was held during 2014 and 2015 primarily at the Iraqi Institute for the Conservation of Antiquities and Heritage (IICAH) in Erbil, as well as at the American University in Iraq, Sulaimani.
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As the culmination of our International Field Studies trip to Panama this spring, 15 Tulane Master of Preservation Studies (MPS) students had the opportunity to visit the UNESCO World Heritage site of Portobelo, a strategic fortress stunningly situated on the Caribbean coastline of the Spanish colonial empire.
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This past May, I traveled to Serbia and Croatia with my colleague Stephanie Ortiz. She's overseeing WMF's Jewish Heritage Program, and together we went to meet with stakeholders and survey potential locations for exhibitions at two synagogues.
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Aqsunqur mosque, built in 1347 by Emir Shams ad-Din Aqsunqur, is located in Cairo's Darb al-Ahmar district. The building was renovated in 1652-1654 by Emir Ibrahim Agha al-Mustahfizan who decorated the back wall of the prayer hall, as well as his own mausoleum, with blue Iznik-style tiles, which led to the structure being known as the “Blue Mosque."
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In Zanzibar, the legacy of slavery has not gone away. The slave trade was abolished in Zanzibar in 1873. Ownership of slaves finally became illegal in colonial East Africa in 1922, still within living memory. Although now largely hidden, the legacy of slavery continues to affect society. It is a wound that has not yet healed.
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Emphasizing a dynamic partnership philosophy, Thai Fine Arts Department (FAD) and World Monuments Fund (WMF) collaborated to complete a condition assessment at Wat Chaiwatthanaram, part of the ancient city of Ayutthaya.
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The mausoleum L’timad-ud-Daulah is located in the Mughal Gardens in Agra, a WMF 50th Anniversary Priority Site. Constructed between 1622 and 1628, it represents a transition from the first phase of monumental Mughal Architecture, built primarily from red sandstone, to the subsequent phase that used pietra-dura on white marble. L’timad-ud-Daulah is thus a building representative of a paradigm shift in construction styles. Over the decades, several attempts have been made at conserving I’timad-ud-daulah and the building has seen many interventions.
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Blog post | May 28, 2015

Structural Issues at Phnom Bakheng

Phnom Bakheng has structural issues at several locations. These structures have collapsed due to forward leaning walls, movements, or shifts of the structure, and uncontrolled vegetation grows in between the walls and the bedrock.
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Blog post | May 28, 2015

Ancient Khmer Masonry at Phnom Bakheng

For almost 20 years I have worked on the conservation and restoration of Angkor monuments, and I have learned many things from the construction techniques of these Khmer monuments. Construction materials used for almost all the Khmer temples are basically the same, including sandstone, laterite, and bricks.
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On April 25, 2015, a group of 110 students, primarily from ASEAN countries, visited the World Monuments Fund conservation program at the temple of Phnom Bakheng. The students were participants in the <a href="https://youngsoutheastasianleaders.state.gov">Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative</a> (YSEALI), a program of the U.S. government designed to strengthen leadership development and networking in Southeast Asia.
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