The conservation program for the paintings provided an occasion to study a broad strategy intended to contribute effectively to developing a conservation culture in Yemen and supplying a starting point for autonomous implementation in the country.
Thanks to support from the Italian government channeled through the General Direction for Cooperation and Development of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which has been active for years in the region, the CCA implemented various initiatives for training local personnel and circulating information. Apart from the conservation work in itself, the following activities were developed:
- a training course for six technicians of GOAMM (Antiquities Department of Yemen) in the field of wall-paintings maintenance, together with experience of hands-on treatment of the surfaces;
- a study day held in June 2005 at Sana’a with the participation of notable international professionals. The topic was Conservation and Enhancement of the Cultural Heritage of Yemen;
- publication of books (in Italian, English and Arabic) entitled “Amiriya Madrasa. The conservation of the wall paintings,” providing the building’s history and scientific data about the project. Together with the books, a DVD was also produced containing an informative video;
- for the tourist trade, 16,000 postcards were printed with images of the madrasa and the paintings.
Proceeds from the sale of the books, DVD and postcards will go into a fund for future maintenance of the monument. It was essential to create a way to make the project sustainable so that all the effort put into a monument destined for oblivion would not be in vain due to a lack of economic and professional resources.