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Boletín del Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino

On-line version ISSN 0718-6894

Abstract

CASANOVA, Paz. INITIAL SURVEY OF THE STATE OF CONSERVATION OF ROCK PAINTINGS IN THE ALTO LOA AREA, ANTOFAGASTA REGION, CHILE. Bol. Mus. Chil. Arte Precolomb. [online]. 2011, vol.16, n.1, pp. 47-66. ISSN 0718-6894.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0718-68942011000100004.

The paper describes the first general survey of the state of conservation of rock paintings located in the Alto Loa area, in Chile’s Region II. The physical integrity of 88 archaeological sites was evaluated, taking into account the value and use of these cultural resources. The links between the alterations recorded and the processes involved in making the works was also studied. The results establish the stability of the substrata and paintings, but identify as a weak point the loss of material caused by soluble salts and problems with adhesion and cohesion of the pigments. The paper concludes that these changes result from factors intrinsic to production, which distinguish the red pictographs from those of other colors. The relative inaccessibility of the sites, which are minimally affected by humans, is favorable to their conservation.

Keywords : rock art; conservation; production processes; alteration factors; alteration indicators.

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