Stone by stone. The mapping of the floor of the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre

The "stone by stone" mapping of the floor of the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre has begun.

Every day hundreds of pilgrims visit the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre. Over the centuries, millions of people from all over the world have walked on these stones.

Arch. Andrea Caligaris
Caligaris architects
"I'm an architect and right now I'm drawing the stones, stone by stone, which will then be transported from this iPad to the computer. From there we will get a technical drawing that will be used, together with the information gathered by the restorers, the geologists and those who are part of our team. We will be able to understand the state of conservation, the mapping of the deterioration, the surfaces, in order to formulate a hypothesis of a restoration project."

The project is carried out by the Foundation Centre for the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage La Venaria Reale (Ccr), of Turin, and the Department of Antiquity Sciences of the University La Sapienza, of Rome.

Arch. Osama Hamdan
Al Quds University - Jerusalem
"We're in the first phase of work. This phase came after the documentation by a laser scan on the entire floor of the Basilica. In this way, working on this document, we can then evaluate the state of conservation. This means evaluating the degradation that every stone and every slab on this floor has suffered. But at the same time, we are also studying the type of material, the origin, where the material which made the floor of the Basilica comes from".

For the Architect Osama Hamdam, "the approach to the work is conservative, even if at this stage it is not entirely clear what can be preserved and what can’t".

Arch. Osama Hamdan
Al Quds University - Jerusalem
"I'm very happy because we've finished restoring the Aedicula, and we're not starting with the floor. Gradually, the situation of the Basilica is improving. Especially with regard to the issue of the visitors' safety, which have increased in the last period. Our project will take into consideration the safety of the pilgrims, but at the same time we have to take into account the facilities that will provide the basilica as well as the aesthetic aspect".

Arch. Andrea Caligaris
Caligaris architects
"It is a particular emotion because we are in this place, the fulcrum of Christianity and we are right next to the Wayside Shrine of Jesus. It is a great emotion, it is very beautiful and interesting because there are so many layers of this floor that have been added over the centuries, as a result of the various interventions and occupations that took place. So, it is also very interesting to discover and see the various differences and how all these elements have been intertwined, a great historical testimony and certainly a great pleasure".

 

Christian Media Center