ABOUT US AND HISTORY
Conservation – Restoration education in Ankara University started in Başkent Vocational School of Higher Education which was founded in 1989 and which started admitting students in 1990-1991 academic years. It became the first education institute which displayed academic activity in this field in Turkey. The vocational school, which provides associate level education, has produced 230 graduates in 25 years until the year 2016. Most of those graduates work in Regional Conservation Laboratories, Museum Conservation Laboratories, and Archaeological Excavations and as instructors in Conservation-Restoration education in various universities.
As associate’s degree education becomes inadequate in the fields of Conservation – Restoration, transforming the program into undergraduate program came into attention. As a result of studies conducted for this purpose, Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage Department was founded in 2015 within the Faculty of Fine Arts. Our University gained strength as Vocational School of Home Economics and Başkent Vocational School of Higher Education instructors are integrated into the department. Our department was founded on 25 years of experience of Başkent Vocational School of Higher Education and is one of the institutions which provide education in this field with a long standing background in our country.
In the department where student admissions started in 2016-2017 academic year, education comprises every piece of stone, terra-cotta, porcelain, glass, metal, bone, ivory, wood, leather, paper (archive material), oil painting, painting, textile, mosaic and mural that has artistic value. There are 6 well equipped laboratories in our department dedicated for education and service in these fields:
- Terra-cotta Artifacts and Mural Application Laboratory ( Class Application Laboratory)
- Mosaic and Stone Artifacts Application Laboratory ( Class Application Laboratory)
- Metal and Terra-cotta Artifacts Application Laboratory ( Class Application Laboratory)
- Archive Materials and Oil Paintings Application Laboratory
- Textile Research and Application Laboratory
- Ceramic Artifacts Project Laboratory
When archaeological excavations and researches that tend to increase in numbers and existing museums and archaeological sites are considered, the need for education institutions, in which individuals will be educated in conservation of cultural heritage according to principles of national and international laws and in which research will be conducted, is obvious.
Nowadays, conservation science is interdisciplinary and has a very dynamic structure. Our department is open to international cooperation in accordance with these fundamental goals, aims to create new idea and application areas, and sees introducing and popularizing the conservation science, establishing Turkish terminology and conservation ethics and bringing in works to literature among its fundamental goals. Conducting research on the application of new technologies in conservation studies, prioritizing researches which will widen the area operation of the fields chemistry and physics in conservation science and educating successful personnel who are experts in their field, confident, innovative, embrace professional ethics are our essential purposes.
In human history, Anatolia, which has acted as a bridge between Africa, Asia and Europe for tens of thousands of years, has witnessed settlements intensely. Therefore, in cultural history, Anatolia has an irreplaceable place. There are excavations in all corners of the country which have been going on for almost a 100 years such as Troy, Ephesus, Pergamon, Gordion, Hattusa. At the same time, there are underwater cultural heritage sites in our country which is surrounded by sea from three sides.
Cultural heritages comprising several tens of thousands of years from prehistory to current time are subject to scientific researches in all corners of the country. As a result of all these studies, number of identified and registered archaeological sites has reached 14,840 and number of immovable cultural heritages has reached 100,000by the end of 2015. It is seen that number of immovable cultural heritages which need to be conserved has exceeded 144,000. Among these, 13 have been added to UNESCO World Heritage Site list and 62 have been added to the temporary list.
According to 2015 data, 545 archaeological excavations and researches have taken places which have been conducted by the Ministry of Culture in cooperation with domestic and foreign universities in public investment areas in Turkey. Also according to 2015 data, number of museums connected to the Ministry of Culture is 193, number of private museums is 211. Number of movable cultural heritages in all museums and collections is determined as 3 million 235 thousand. Göbeklitepe in Şanlıurfa, which has been discovered in recent history show that there are many archaeological sites waiting to be discovered in Anatolia. All of these indicate that number of cultural heritages in our country is going to increase.
Variety of cultural heritage of our country and the fact that our country has an important place in History of Civilization should be considered among the wealth of our country. Analyzing, documenting, registering our cultural heritage and publicizing said heritage by establishing museums and archaeological sites are among the most important ways of utilizing that wealth. In addition, conservation and restoration of cultural heritage using qualified scientific methods is a highly important subject. These data regarding cultural heritage brings along a difficult task of conservation. In light of this information, the fundamental vision of our department with its academic staff who prioritize ethics and with its students who has a developed knowledge of history and conservation is the conservation of cultural heritage within the scope of scientific research and ethics.