Edited by BookTime, the records from the study conference dedicated to one of the most important pieces in the Duomo di Milano's collection are now available
On 16th October 2017, on the occasion of the day of study dedicated to the international symbol of Milan and to the Veneranda Fabbrica's great renovation projects entitled "The Infinite Fabbrica", together with the 630th anniversary of the approval of the first regulation granted to the Veneranda Fabbrica del Duomo di Milano, the records from the conference dedicated to the Cross of Chiaravalle were officially presented, a conference promoted by the University of Milano-Bicocca together with the Fabbrica, which took place on 16th May 2016 in the Sala delle Colonne of the Museo del Duomo.
The volume, edited by BookTime and completed with the contribution of Intesa Sanpaolo and the support of the “Scuola della Cattedrale” presided by the Duomo Archbishop, Mons. Gianantonio Borgonovo, brings together historic and scientific studies carried out on the occasion of the artwork's restoration, made possible by its inclusion in the Intesa Restituzioni's 2016 restoration program.
The Cross of Chiaravalle is a complex piece of art, with an elaborate iconography, beginning with the commission (there is no documentary certainty) in which a combination of various techniques and materials were used: cast silver and silver filigree, golden, chiselled; jasper,gems, quartz, and cameos; sheets of embossed and chiselled silver: rock crystals.
This very complexity required a multi-disciplinary investigative approach, alongside the restoration (curated by Franco Blumer), in which various and widely different specializations openly contributed, each making their skills available to all. The University of Milano-Bicocca coordinated a multi-faceted study: all of the gemmological samples were analysed (thanks to GECI, Milan), Raman and XRF measurements were taken (thanks to XGLab, a spin off company of the Polytechnic University of Milan), as well as SEM (thanks to the University of Pavia, Department of Earth Science and Environment and the Arvedi Laboratory), and nuclear investigations were carried out (thanks to the University of Milano-Bicocca's Physics Department, and several European collaborators).
At the same time, art historians were able to reinterpret the piece and previous studies in light of what emerged as a result of the restoration, launching new investigations and providing all-new contributions.
The volume is for sale in the bookshop of the Grande Museo del Duomo (Piazza del Duomo, 12) and in the Duomo Shop (Ticket office 1 – Sala delle Colonne – Piazza del Duomo, 14/a) for €20,00.
The Cross of Chiaravalle
Historical and scientific insights on the occasion of the restoration
Compiled by Giulia Benati and Daniela Di Martino
Editor BookTime (Milan, 2017)