W trzydziestolecie powojennej opieki nad zabytkami
THE THIRTY YEARS OF POST-WAR PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE
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The first conservations started in this country already within the early period of the newly formed political and social system. On August 30, 1945 an extensive programme of activities in this field has been formally approved; as a consequence of unprecedented losses suffered by cultural heritage in Poland the necessity emerged to rebuild the key elements of the country’s culture. In the 1960’s the interest of practicizing Conservators' and restorers Was chiefly focused on protection of historical monuments that have survived and only in recent years may foe observed some signes o f return to practices from the early years after the country's liberation. No doubt, however, that a good deal of experience gathered during the thirty years of activities greatly contributed to development of both theoretical and practical knowledge of those dealing with conservation and restoration. In 1972 once again was established the post of Chief Conservator to make the skilled care of architectural and townplanming monuments more effective. The ranks of conservators and restorers undertaking their work in 1944—1945 were extremely scarce, however, they were growing systematically with the passing time and now some deficits are to be noted only in the government conservation services. Unlike in early post-war years, when the restoration and conservation were carried out by various working teams and companies, at present they are realized by a state-owned company known as The Ateliers for Conservation of Cultural Property entrusted with almost monopolistic rights and active not only in this country but also abroad. Contributions made by that Company to restoration of entire urban centres and especially of ancient palaces, castles and sacred buildings were quite enormous. Acting since January 1962, being the date of its establishment, the Historical Monuments Documentation Centre, Warsaw is responsible for specialized publications, collecting of information and giving as extensive as possible aid to conservators and restorers. An undisputable merit of Polish conservators consists in publication, since 1948, of a quarterly “Protection of Historical Monuments” and of a series known as the “Library of Museums and Historical Monuments Protection”. Both popularity and interest in conservation were most vivid in 1945—1955 but in the 1960’s some stagnation prevailed; at present the situation improved which the fact may be evidenced by appearance of numerous publications, organization of an all- country action called „The Monuments are awaiting their owners” and the establishing of the Society for Preservation of Cultural Property. As is well known fact the foreign professional circles are highly appreciating our achievements in art of conservation and the Polish conservators have deserved a wide reputation.
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