INTRODUCTION TO THE SPECIAL FOCUS COLUMN
Shibing Dai* and Peng Zhang
College of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tongji University, Shanghai, China
We are delighted to act as guest editors for the Special Focus Column on ‘Technology for conservation and restoration of built heritage’ that opens the third volume of the Built Heritage Journal. As the first international journal published in English on heritage conservation in China, one of the objectives of Built Heritage is to share latest research results between China and the rest of the world. Our main purpose with this Column has been to provide a platform where to enable this exchange on the specific issues of material science conservation.
The heritage architecture of China is extremely multifaceted. Styles and techniques of traditional architecture vary from region to region due to locally available resources related to climate, geology and styles of the different ethnical groups that inhabit the country. In addition to Chinese traditional architecture, there is a variety of Western-influenced architecture, e.g., the Chinese modern architecture since the middle of 19th century, often with a mix of Chinese and Western architecture styles, decorative elements and techniques. It is our contention that both threads, traditional and modern, require specific material conservation methods, which need to be compatible with their characteristics and also allow for their continued use in the future.