A Study in Conservation: The Case of the Carved Monoliths of Cerro Sechín, Peru
This event took place virtually on Thursday, September 29, 2022, at 12:00 PM (ET). See below for more information on the discussion, including the event description and speaker information.
Among the earliest known ornamented sites in the Americas, Cerro Sechín once served as the ceremonial center for one of the oldest coastal Andean civilizations in Peru. The hundreds of carved stones that make up the monument's facade date back thousands of years, showcasing combat rituals as well as human sacrifice. Cerro Sechín's lithic facade is unique in the Andean region.
Join WMF Project Conservation Leader Ingrid García for an investigation into the stone conservation techniques safeguarding Cerro Sechín’s unique monoliths, precious records of the site’s ancient history. The event will feature presentations and a conversation with guest panelists and stone conservation experts Simon Warrack, Cristina Vazio, and Nelly Robles Garcia.
Date: Thursday, September 29
Time: 12:00 noon (ET)
This event has already taken place.
WMF’s work at Cerro Sechín is made possible thanks to support from the U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) and the U.S. Embassy in Peru, as well as Tianaderrah Foundation / Nellie and Robert Gipson.
About the Speakers
Artist, Conservator, and WMF Project Conservation Leader
Ingrid García is an artist specialized in Conservation and Restoration of Artworks. She holds a master's degree in Cultural Heritage Management at the National University of San Marcos, Lima, Peru, and a bachelor's degree in Conservation and Restoration of Artworks from the National University Diego Quispe Tito, Cusco, Peru. She has a diploma in Management Studies and Environmental Impact Assessment from University Ricardo Palma, Lima, Peru. She was a scholar in the Stone Conservation Specialization Course: 19th International Course on Stone Conservation – SC15 organized by ICCROM and Getty Conservation Institute.
She has fourteen years of professional experience in the cultural heritage field, eight of them at the Ministry of Culture of Peru. She focuses on movable and immovable cultural assets, stone conservation, project development, supervision, and teaching.
Stone Conservation Consultant
Simon Warrack is a British-born stone conservation consultant based in Italy. After studying Renaissance History at the University of Warwick, he attended the Building Crafts Training School in London to pursue a career in the field of conservation. Following a four-year apprenticeship at Canterbury Cathedral, he moved to Venice where he attended the San Servolo Course (UNESCO) and the ICCROM\UNESCO Stone Conservation Course. He worked in Venice for three years on various sites including the Ducal Palace, the Church of San Zaccaria, and San Salvador, and also participated in projects in France. He then moved to Rome where he worked on the Trevi Fountain, Trajan’s Market, and SS Vincenzo and Anastasio, amongst other monuments, before becoming involved in the conservation of the Temples at Angkor in Cambodia in 1994.
Since 1994, Warrack's work has centred on stone conservation and training in southeast Asia. He recently led the conservation team at the ancient site of the Temple of the Sun at Ed Dur in the Emirate of Umm al Quwain in the United Arab Emirates and then worked as the stone conservator for WMF's project at Lalibela in Ethiopia. In 2020 and 2021, Warrack spent seven months training Syrian refugees in traditional stonemasonry within the context of a WMF capacity-building project in Tripoli, Lebanon. He has just come back from working on the World Heritage site at Great Zimbabwe.
Conservator, technical and managing director of the Cristina Vazio s.a.s. company
Cristina Vazio currently serves as technical and managing director of the Cristina Vazio s.a.s. company, which she founded in 1997. The organization collaborates with many Superintendencies of the Ministry of Cultural Heritage in Italy and with various international organizations, including with ARCE (American Research Center in Egypt ) and WMF. Vazio has published papers in Italian and in foreign academic journals on her numerous projects and has been invited to participate in several conservation-related conferences. In addition to these accomplishments, she has also conducted educational and teaching seminars for the Higher Institute of Conservation and Restoration of Rome and for other universities and institutions.
Vazio is a graduate of the Higher Education School of Rome "Higher Institute of Conservation and Restoration" (formerly the Central Institute of Restoration), with a specialization in the field of wall paintings, paintings on wood, and paintings on canvas, as well as the restoration of stone materials, stuccoes, and mosaics. In 2005, she graduated from the University “La Sapienza” in Rome with a degree in Artistic Historical Science.
Nelly M. Robles Garcia
Senior Researcher, INAH Mexico; Director of Conservation at Monte Albán, World Heritage Site; and Vice-President of ICAHM-ICOMOS
Nelly Robles Garcia is a full-time researcher at the National Institute of Anthropology and History and works for the INAH Oaxaca Center. She is also Vice President of the International Council for the Management of Archaeological Heritage (ICAHM-ICOMOS) and a published author and editor of works on the topics of of Archaeology of Oaxaca, Conservation of Cultural Heritage, and History of Archaeology. Robles Garcia has led various archaeological and conservation projects in Oaxaca, such as the Mitla conservation project; the Yagul archaeological project; the Monte Albán Management Plan. As an expert member of ICOMOS, Robles Garcia has participated in the integration of the UNESCO World Heritage List, evaluating various sites in the Americas for their potential inscription.
Robles Garcia has won multiple academic awards, including the 1988 INAH Manuel Toussaint Award; the INAH Francisco de la Maza Award; Award for Excellence in Cultural Resource Management from the George Wright Society; and the Federico Sescosse Award of ICOMOS MEXICO. She has a degree in Archaeology from the National School of Anthropology and History; a master's in Restoration of Pre-Hispanic Architecture; and a PhD in Anthropology from the University of Georgia, United States.