These three months at Vorderasiatisches Museum were the most important months for my conservation practice.
During this period I had an opportunity to work with very experienced colleagues, and besides conservation work I had a chance to see how a progressive museum works, and I got to see other great museums in Berlin.
I worked on the conservation of the ceramic sarcophagus from Uruk-Warka (Iraq) from the early Babylon period (1800 B.C.). First phase of conservation work was removing the old conservation work/old gypsum and glue, and then I could start second phase: cleaning process. In this process I was introduced to new cleaning materials that are very efficient. After every fragment was cleaned it needed to be desalinated. Third phase of conservation work was consolidation of fragments. Consolidation was done by injecting consolidate which was also new material for me. This procedure needed to be done with extra care because of sarcophagus’s delicate surface. The last phase of my work was putting the fragments back together by gluing first smallest pieces, and then bigger ones. There were 37 fragments.
I also made a lot of different fillings samples in order to make a perfect filling for the restauration work on sarcophagus. This filling needs to be similar to original material and color of sarcophagus, but also to be solid enough in order to support the object structure.
I also got a chance to participate UNESCO workshop on Conservation of Mural Paintings, which was a very important workshop for me, I saw presentations of experts from all over the world, and I was introduced to conservation works of murals from the Asiatische Kunst Museum. I also applied for the workshop “The Sciences and the Arts: Different or Similar Tendencies of Evolution?'' that will be held during ending days of my staying in Berlin. I tried to use my stay in Berlin for my professional development and I am very grateful that I got Rave scholarship for my work at the Vorderasatisches Museum. These three months really changed my life for the better.
I hope that I will get a chance to share knowledge and apply this experience with my colleagues on conservation works in my home country.
Nada Krstajic, von April – Juli 2015, Vorderasiatisches Museum, Berlin