The restoration treatment, which was carried out on mosaics in varying degrees of preservation, was aimed at relaying the artifacts on a new support that would substitute the missing original support, and at stabilizing the conditions of the original materials, thus improving the legibility of the surface. The final result was mosaics applied on movable honeycomb aluminum panels, roughly 1m2, cut following the lines of the original design. The panels that compose the surface are easy to handle and store, they allow the mosaics to be displayed and transported easily, and once assembled together form a complete floor.
The mosaic fragments were applied on panels with a layer of mortar formed by lime and crushed pottery, similar in composition to the original mortars that were destroyed during lifting.
This type of support allows for retreatability, replicates the original structural features, is resistant and light at the same time, as well as stable and unreactive over time.
The sequence of operations carried out to obtain these objectives can be synthesized in the following steps:
- checking the strength of the tesserae’s temporary support, formed by the textile applied during lifting;
- positioning the fragments on clay in order to integrate the lacunae caused by detachment or poor adhesion of the textile, followed by the application of a new facing;
- preparation of the rear of the fragments for application on the new support;
- positioning on the new support and integration of lacunae;
- cleaning of the surfaces;
- application of mortar between the tesserae;
- final protection;
- separation of the pieces and storage.