We believe there is a quality, a component, an aura, unique to works of art which sets them apart from other human endeavors, even closely related ones. It is our fear that this quality is particularly endangered in modern times. Those responsible for custodianship of our collective inherited imagery should be held accountable for decisions regarding the well being of works of art. We are calling for a full disclosure of information regarding specific art conservation projects, methods and historical research. We believe that, had there been a free exchange of points of view and data, many headline-gathering interventions would have been dropped altogether in favor of minimal dustings and careful maintenance procedures. Through the efforts of artwatch, a dialogue concerning restoration and conservation has begun, a dialogue which we hope will prevent further tragedies involving our cultural heritage.
TO SERVE as an international advocate for the conservation and stewardship of historically significant works of art and cultural monuments.
TO PROMOTE an open exchange of ideas and information on the full range of practices in the field of conservation, restoration and international stewardship of important cultural artifacts.
TO WRITE AND PUBLISH scholarly and lay commentary bearing on these and related issues, and to develop a study collection of publications and reference materials.
TO DEVELOP manifestos such as A Bill of Rights for a Work of Art, which will facilitate the enlightened stewardship and protection of the global cultural patrimony.