As part of a new master study course in monument preservation and conservation at the National University of Architecture and Construction (NUACA) in Yerevan/Armenia, a project week on damage assessment and conservation at a medieval Neghuts monastery took place.
The impressive building complex is partly in ruins and consists of the Church of Surb Astvatsatsin (Holy Mother of God) with a large adjoining gavid, served as narthex, a mausoleum and assembly room. The southern entrance to the gavid, which was probably built in a final construction phase, clearly shows influences from Persian architecture. The building combines architectural styles from different building traditions and cultures.
The students became familiar with the principles of weathering processes and the method of evidence based conservation. At place, they carried out damage mapping and carried out investigations into the moisture, water absorption, salt load and surface hardness of the different rock materials. Examinations of mortar samples were able to provide important new information on construction phases and construction technology. In further project weeks, a conservation concept will be developed and the first security work will be carried out on the endangered structure.
Our commitment in Armenia is in continuity with the summer school “Stones in Armenian Heritage Architecture” that we held in Armenia in 2019 on behalf of the University of Goettingen as project partner of NUACA.