Museum of Adrano, archaeology and history under the volcanoMuseum of Adrano, archaeology and history under the volcano

The restoration

In the fifties of the twentieth century the building, which during the nineteenth century, almost by a twist of fate, had been declared a national monument, lived one of the darkest periods of its centennial history. Partly in ruins and abandoned completely in the upper floors, was fully used only in the first floor, where work of adjustment  as district penitentiary had entailed the destruction of salons, to deface also the architectural exterior style.

Norman Castle
(particularly the east facade before restoration)

The ground floor was used for purposes not in keeping with the dignity of the monument. The space inside the eastern bastion was, in fact, used as a kennel and divided  with walls that were useful to keep separate the animals. The two beautiful rooms with covering vaulted   of the same floor  had been converted, respectively, in municipal stock and wells in black.

Finally thanks to the pressure of institutions and of public opinion the prison was removed and, in a letter dated 8 August 1956, sent by the Superintendency of Monuments of Catania to Revenue Office, says: "The building, State property, remains enemployed, given the state of ruin its walls
It would be the intention of exceeding the Ministry of Education take over the castle and allocated it to use cultural ....
The story, sad, of the monumental tower, from fortress and patrician residence to prison, may be finally over.

Norman Castle
(the upper floors in ruins with collapsed ceilings)

Detail of the Chapel
(before restoration)

At first the work that will lead to restoration of the lower floors of the castle, where the first sections of the infant Museum of Adrano  will be placed and then simultaneously with the increase in archaeological collections, restoration of the superior rooms, is immediately undertaken, in close collaboration between the Superintendency of Monuments in Catania and the Antiquities of Syracuse.

New interventions

Under the POR Sicilia 2000 - 2006 the "Project of development of new Adrano Regional Museum" has been achieved. It even if mainly targeted the establishment of museums, has created the conditions to treat even small works of restoration that, for organizational and functional reasons, had not been considered previously.

The problems emerged in the design phase before and after execution, were somewhat complex given that it had to combine both the functional aspect of the new development, while fully respecting the rules that govern the safety and enjoyment of property at destination museum That the conservative, to which we tried to intervene without affecting the characteristic elements manufactured indeed, in some cases, highlighting the special features.

Norman Castle
Furnishing of museum before the works P.O.R 2000-2006 

These considerations, given the establishment of the museum is a landmark of great significance in the territory, have meant that the intervention as a whole was basically aimed towards the realization of the new museum, without neglecting aspects relating to the collection of architectural manufactured.

This was primarily cared for the Study of the tour. Successively led to a series of interventions that make available to a wider number of visitors.
So, not to interfere with the flow of inbound and outbound, the ground floor was connected to the first through a steel ladder situated in interspace between the walls and the castle while, in order to provide access to the first three levels, dedicated entirely exposure, the third floor is been used as the post office management or custody of the museum. The historical and artistic section has also been prepared in this plan and has found conclusion the path archaeological; successively, you can access the terrace of coverage.

For the disabled was made an entrance, south through the reopening of an existing gap in the fortified walls at the road level and  the installation of an elevator between the ground floor and the first; in addition, through a ramp, west of the first floor, you can access the walkway between the tower and the  fortified walls.

In addition to revive the outside walkway was built a new loft on the third floor of mixed-concrete and wood structure in laminated wood on sight, replacing the old, in reinforced concrete.

The choice of flooring was directed towards the use of lava rock with regard to external environments and the ground floor while for the first and second plan was prepared a package of fire-resistant wood and dogato.
The third floor, however, was paved with bricks in brick.

The environments for services and facilities, functional at the Museum, were positioned along the interspace of ground floor, not to interfere with the path to fruition and to visit and structures of historical monument.

The conservative interventions generally consist of a the reconfiguration and restoration of the internal wall ,  of the ground floor and of the first.
At this level have been torn down the walls of the premises and services previously used for offices and staff housing.
As regards external, have been reconfigured and refurbished the walls on the east side of the monument, on the terrace.

The interiors of the ground floor and first were treated with a protective product  for broken surfaces. This compound, not films and complete absorption, was specially evaluated in order not to alter the composition and colors of materials which would be used.

In the post chapel in South-East corner of the second floor were provided a series of interventions aimed at restoration of the stone decorations and at the reconstruction of plasters.

By installing new lighting fixtures and 26 exhibition showcases the development has taken the final image.

In conclusion, the action taken returned the architectural historical image of monument and an ancient visual relationship with the surrounding  fulfilling also rules that govern the safety and functionality of public buildings at the destination museum.

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