The conservation state of the Sassi of Matera site (Southern Italy) and its correlation with the environmental conditions analysed through spatial analysis techniques

Fabrizio Terenzio Gizzi, Maria Sileo, Marilisa Biscione, Maria Danese, Monica Alvarez de Buergo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations

Abstract

The current study aims to analyse the conservation state of the Sassi of Matera site (Southern Italy), a place inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1993 (the Sassi and the Park of the Rupestrian Churches of Matera) and recently awarded 2019 European Capital of Culture. Furthermore, the article considers the influence of some of the causative factors controlling the Matera building conservation state, paying particular attention to the site microclimatic conditions such as the insolation and winds. We studied this subject through a new methodology that makes a combined use both of stone decay data gained from the extensive field assessments of the visible weathering forms catalogued in an ad hoc questionnaire and GIS advanced spatial analysis techniques such as Map Algebra and Kernel Density Estimation. The research puts into evidence that the Sassi of Matera shows a fair state of conservation that is conditioned by the wind/rain actions and sun exposure. Besides, just the already well known facts that the surfaces facing north seem to be most influenced by the wind/rain actions; and that, on the contrary, the decay of the walls facing south seems to be guided mainly from the sun exposure, put into evidence the importance of locating the intensities of the decays in any urban tissue or any site in order to plan conservation interventions and prioritize actions and the usefulness of the spatial analysis techniques and data processing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-74
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Cultural Heritage
Volume17
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors thank the Basilicata Region for supporting this activity in the framework of the Project “PRO_CULT” (Advanced methodological approaches and technologies for Protection and Security of Cultural Heritage) financed by Regional Operational Programme ERDF 2007/2013. Furthermore, the authors wish to thank three anonymous reviewers for taking the time to provide detailed and constructive comments that greatly improved the article.

Funding Information:
The authors thank the Basilicata Region for supporting this activity in the framework of the Project ?PRO_CULT? (Advanced methodological approaches and technologies for Protection and Security of Cultural Heritage) financed by Regional Operational Programme ERDF 2007/2013. Furthermore, the authors wish to thank three anonymous reviewers for taking the time to provide detailed and constructive comments that greatly improved the article.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier Masson SAS.

Copyright:
Copyright 2018 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Conservation state
  • Decay index
  • Historical centre
  • Kernel density
  • Spatial analysis

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