Heritage is gradually built up, generation after generation, carrying memory and identity. This layering of time transforms both material relics and immaterial practices. So, the sediments of time on a single place can enrich or denature its signification, as well as lifestyle adapts to the evolving world. How can the present generation deal with such transformations, in a world that faces new challenges of globalization, sustainability etc.
This lecture focuses on the process of evolving perception and ‘heritagization’. How does a relic become heritage? Why does each generation reinvent its past by writing new heritage narratives? How to choose (or not) for a reference period when renovating a relic? The lecture will be illustrated with examples from China and Europe.
• Heritage cannot defend itself and needs to be protected by man against all kind of attacks.
• It is when we lose something, that we become aware of its importance.
• Each generation redefines heritage (and history) in function of its needs of memory and identity.
About the Speaker:
Prof. Thomas Coomans teaches architectural history and conservation at the University of Leuven, Department of Architecture, and at the advanced master of conservation program of the Raymond Lemaire International Centre for Conservation. His research and publications focus on religious architecture and heritage. He also works on foreign architecture in China during the first half of the twentieth century.
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