Conservation of Roman Wall Painting Fragments from Issa: Research and Reconstruction of the Original Scheme

Author: Marija Lena Bošković
Mentors: Nikola Radošević, Lecturer; Krešimir Bosnić, Lecturer

Department of Conservation-Restoration, Arts Academy of the University of Split (Croatia)
Study programme: Integrated undergraduate and graduate course of study in conservation-restoration
Specialization: Wall Paintings and Mosaics (5th year of study)


BOSKOVIC LenaArchaeological excavations carried out in 2012 and 2013, at the site of the Antique city of Issa on the island of Vis, revealed a large number of fragments of Roman wall paintings, dating back to the first century AD. Following the collapse of an ancient construction, the fragments remained buried for almost 2000 years. After systematic research into the original scheme and the appropriate conservation treatment, the fragments could become one of the most important examples of Classical wall paintings in the area.

When found, the fragments were in a relatively good condition. The paint layer was of high artistic quality, depicting, among other things, some interesting mythological characters. Because of their large number, only one third of them have become object of research and conservation. The aim of the laboratory analysis and cleaning tests carried out on the surface dirt was to better understand the original techniques and materials and to provide the conservators with valuable information concerning the future treatment. After a close examination, which included the positioning of individual fragments, some assumptions have been made concerning the original design.

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Short biography

MARIJA LENA BOŠKOVIĆ  was born on the island of Brač, in 1993. After finishing general programme secondary school,  she enrolled into Conservation-Restoration program of study, at The Arts Academy of the University of Split, in 2012. She is specialising in the field of conservation and restoration of the wall paintings and mosaics, currently working on her final year research project. She has participated in several conservation-restoration field projects and two international conferences, with posters. In 2017/2018 she spent one semester on Erasmus+ internship program in Milan, Italy. She speaks Italian and English languages.