You are on page 1of 23

This article was downloaded by: [193.194.88.

27] On: 19 February 2012, At: 06:17 Publisher: Taylor & Francis Informa Ltd Registered in England and Wales Registered Number: 1072954 Registered office: Mortimer House, 37-41 Mortimer Street, London W1T 3JH, UK

International Journal of Architectural Heritage: Conservation, Analysis, and Restoration


Publication details, including instructions for authors and subscription information: http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/uarc20

Typological and Structural Authenticity in Reconstruction: The Timber Roofs of Church of the Pieve in Cavalese, Italy
Maurizio Piazza & Mariapaola Riggio
a a a

University of Trento, Department of Mechanical and Structural Engineering, Trento, Italy Available online: 31 May 2007

To cite this article: Maurizio Piazza & Mariapaola Riggio (2007): Typological and Structural Authenticity in Reconstruction: The Timber Roofs of Church of the Pieve in Cavalese, Italy, International Journal of Architectural Heritage: Conservation, Analysis, and Restoration, 1:1, 60-81 To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15583050601126095

PLEASE SCROLL DOWN FOR ARTICLE Full terms and conditions of use: http://www.tandfonline.com/page/terms-and-conditions This article may be used for research, teaching, and private study purposes. Any substantial or systematic reproduction, redistribution, reselling, loan, sub-licensing, systematic supply, or distribution in any form to anyone is expressly forbidden. The publisher does not give any warranty express or implied or make any representation that the contents will be complete or accurate or up to date. The accuracy of any instructions, formulae, and drug doses should be independently verified with primary sources. The publisher shall not be liable for any loss, actions, claims, proceedings, demand, or costs or damages whatsoever or howsoever caused arising directly or indirectly in connection with or arising out of the use of this material.

International Journal of Architectural Heritage, 1: 6081, 2007 Copyright Taylor & Francis Group, LLC ISSN: 1558-3058 print / 1558-3066 online DOI: 10.1080/15583050601126095

TYPOLOGICAL AND STRUCTURAL AUTHENTICITY IN RECONSTRUCTION: THE TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE, ITALY Maurizio Piazza and Mariapaola Riggio
University of Trento, Department of Mechanical and Structural Engineering, Trento, Italy

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

In case of exceptional or accidental destructive events (e.g., earthquakes, floods, fire), the advisability of completely reconstructing a vanished artifact may be questionable. Among the possible approaches for reconstruction, the so-called philological method allows the complete reading of the whole building. Analogous to the study of literary texts, this method is based on the analysis of the architectural language of a building that is its form and its technical characteristics as well as its structural behavior. This case study concerns reconstruction of the timber roof of the Church of the Pieve in Cavalese (Italy), destroyed during a fire on March 29, 2003, for which the philological approach has been chosen. The design process consisted of two important phases: first the determination of the precise form of the original roof, by considering different kinds of evidence, then the introduction of necessary modifications, to meet the present-day structural standards. Such design choice, far from being a simplistic solution, involved the participation of different experts and a thorough multidisciplinary investigation. KEY WORDS: reconstruction, traditional timber structures, typology, authenticity, structural analysis

1. INTRODUCTION The Church of the Pieve in Cavalese, Italy, is one of the most noteworthy ecclesiastical monuments in the Trentino province and is also the result of a series of architectural interventions that have occurred over the course of time (Figures 1 and 2). The original Romanesque basilica, dated before 1111, survives in the two bays of both the nave and the two side aisles, next to the apse. The longitudinal area of the church is completed by the four bays built in the fifteenth century in the Gothic style. On the north side, a four-bay aisle was erected in 1610 and the Baroque Rosarios Chapel in 1640. The porch in front of the main entrance, as well as the Firmian Chapel on the south side, dates from the second half of the seventeenth century. Modifications were carried out to the choir and the apse in 1780 in the Classical style. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, the main sacristy was built and the bell tower was crowned with the belfry. Apart from this building activity, many repair, maintenance, and restorations works were carried out. A fire on March 29, 2003 destroyed most of the timber roofs
Received 15 May 2006; accepted 22 August 2006. Address correspondence to Maurizio Piazza, University of Trento, Department of Mechanical and Structural Engineering, Via Mesiano 77, 38050, Trento, Italy. E-mail: maurizio.piazza@ing.unitn.it 60

TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE

61

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Figure 1. The Church of the Pieve in Cavalese (reprinted from F. Betta, 1863).

Figure 2. Plan view of the Church of the Pieve in Cavalese.

and a so-called philological reconstruction followed to protect the underlying masonry structures and to secure the visual and aesthetic reintegration of the mutilated monument as well as to bring back important evidence of past crafts.
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

62

M. PIAZZA AND M. RIGGIO

Figure 3. The Church of the Pieve in Cavalese before (left), during, (middle) and after the fire (right).

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

The term philology, in reference to architecture, was first used in the nineteenth century by the Italian architect Camillo Boito (1836 to 1914) as a metaphor to indicate a restoration approach based on the analysis of the building as a document. The more important elements of the built text are its form, its technical features, and its structural behavior. In the case of the roof of the Pieve, metaphorically speaking, the original built text was lost and different kinds of evidence were used to indirectly read it as well as to properly rewrite it. Figure 3 shows the Pieve immediately before, during, and after the fire. The roof geometry reflects the planimetric complexity of the building. The nave is covered by a gable roof, whereas both the apse and the porch have hipped roofs. Lean-to roofs cover the north aisle and the sacristies. Rosarios Chapel has a polygonal hipped roof, whereas onion domes cap the bell tower and the Firmian Chapel. Larch shingles are used for the roofing, except for the cooper shingle of the belfry roof. Although plenty of iconographic documents easily permitted deduction of the geometry of the slopes, the lack of documentation on the timber load-bearing structures made their reconstruction a challenging task. In this regard, both the project planning and the design phases required the participation of different experts and a thorough multidisciplinary investigation, to highlight not only the original form but also the characteristics of the old materials as well as the structural behavior of the lost roof.

2. RESTORATION THEORIES AND RECONSTRUCTION Theories about conservation and, by implication, about reconstruction, have oscillated between two extreme attitudes, for which the works of the French architect Eugene Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc (1814 to 1879) and the English art and social critic John Ruskin (1819 to 1900) are precursors. Because of the central importance of the building completeness and stylistic unity Viollet-le-Duc advocated the reconstruction of missing parts (even including those parts that were planned but never actually built) and the elimination of elements added later that alter the original concept (Viollet-le-Duc, 1868).1 In contrast, Ruskin argued that the historical buildings authenticity should be defended through the preservation of its original material,
` ` ` Restaurer un edifice, ce nest pas lentretenir, le reparer ou le refaire, cest le retablir dans un etat ` complet qui peut navoir jamais existe a un moment donne (to restore a building is not to preserve it, to repair, or rebuild it; it is to reinstate it in a condition of completeness that could never have existed at any given time). INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081
1

TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE

63

rejecting, as consequence, any form of intervention (Ruskin, 1849). This controversy was partially reconciled through the work and writings of later European theorists who attempted to establish universal principles and standards. In Italy, Boito, with his theoretical approach known as philological restoration, criticized the falsification of the monument, which was considered as . . .a book, that I want to read without cuts, retouching and rehashes. . ..2 He was convinced that the only way to avoid fakes was to mark the new intervention . . .so that everyone can recognize it as a modern work. . .3 (Boito, 1893). This issue has been recorded in article 12 of the Venice Charter (ICOMOS, 1964). According to the historical restoration theory formulated by Italian architect Luca Beltrami (1854 to 1933), reconstruction must be based on reliable evidence and historical documentation (Beltrami, 1912).This theory was put into practice with the reconstruction of the Filarete tower during the restoration works of the Sforza Castle in Milan, Italy (1883 to 1911). In Der Moderne Denkmalkultus, Austrian art historian Alois Riegl (1858 to 1905) provided a basis for the assessment of cultural values of historic artifacts and buildings and their consequent treatments (Riegl, 1903). The value theory was ` further developed by another Austrian art historian, Max Dvorak (1874 to 1921), who highlighted in the Katechismus der Denkmalpflege the historical and documental value ` of handicraft versus the academic notion of artistic value (Dvorak, 1916). His contribution switched the preservation debate, which was so far focused on monumental masonry buildings, to a wider range of building typologies, including timber structures typically used in complementary structures and vernacular buildings. ` Dvoraks preservation theories, significantly developed during wartime, dealt with the Heimatschutz movement. To a certain extent, the homeland protection issues motivated many reconstructions of buildings destroyed by accident, by catastrophe, or by the events of war. The slogan of reconstruction dovera e comera! (where it was and how it was), coined after the collapse of the Campanile of St. Marks in Venice, Italy, on July 14, 1902, (Beltrami, 1903), had been widely adopted after the World War II in Europe, when not only the most significant monuments but also entire historic cities lay in ruins. Analogous situations prompt reconstruction in countries devastated by recent conflicts as well as in newly independent nations, bereft of the symbols of their cultural past. In this context, the criteria of reconstruction on a so-called scientificintellectual basis are seldom followed, in favor of the more indulgent principles of rebuilding. 2.1 Authenticity in Reconstruction Although the term reconstruction actually means rebuilding, the two terms are not used in exactly the same way in a preservation context,. The term rebuilding does not include the necessity to approximate the features of the original. Conversely, the term reconstruction denotes the reestablishment of a state that has been lost through disaster, whether of natural or human origin, on the basis of iconographic, written, or material evidence. The general reservations of the preservationist about
2 . . .un libro che io intendo leggere senza riduzioni, aggiunte o rimaneggiamenti. Voglio sentirmi ben sicuro che tutto cio che vi stia scritto usci dalla penna e dallo stile dellautore. . . 3 . . .cos ` che ognuno discerna essere laggiunta unopera moderna.

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

64

M. PIAZZA AND M. RIGGIO

reconstruction result from indiscriminate use of this practice, perpetrated to justify and facilitate demolition of an existing monument. Indeed, in the case of traditional buildings, especially for timber structures, reconstruction often becomes an expedient to avoid both a thorough analysis of the effective load-bearing capability of the existing structures and appropriate strengthening interventions. Partial reconstruction is a quite current practice on old timber structures. This approach represents, to some extent, a traditional way of maintenance, based on replacing the decayed timber elements with identical new ones (Larsen, 1992; Larsen & Marstein, 2000). In the common practice, as noted in the instructions in article 12 of the Venice Charter, Replacements of missing parts must integrate harmoniously with the whole, but at the same time must be distinguishable from the original so that restoration does not falsify the artistic or historic evidence (ICOMOS, 1964) are hardly observed with intention, but effective differentiation results from the unavoidable different age of the material as well as from the revealing modification of carpentry and ironwork details. According to modern restoration theories, either a partial or a total reconstruction requires a sound scientific basis. Indeed, one of the criteria for the inscription of cultural properties in the World Heritage List of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO, Paris, France) on the basis of the 1972 convention is that reconstruction is only acceptable if it is carried out on the basis of complete and detailed documentation on the original and to no extent to the conjecture (UNESCO, 1972). In this sense, the comments in article nine of the Venice Charter can be considered also valid for reconstruction: The process of restoration is a highly specialized operation. It is . . . based on respect for original material and authentic documents. It must stop at the point where conjecture begins . . . (ICOMOS, 1964). Looking at the problem from another perspective, restoration is, as well as a philological work, a work of interpretation and, in a manner, of re-edition of the architectural text when it has to deal with the interpolation, even if substantiated, of missing or lost part of the text. In this case the problem of the lack of evidence is incidental to the need to give the community a readable document. Actually, sensible handling of the subject of reconstruction requires a correct understanding of monuments in the full richness of their authenticity, as noted in the preamble of the Venice Charter, that exceeds just material and formal authenticity and that is founded on a broader basis than just the material evidence (ICOMOS, 1964). In 1977 the World Heritage Committee of UNESCO established the criteria of the test of authenticity. These criteria have been further specified and tuned to the different cultural contexts during the Nara Conference on Authenticity in 1994 (Larsen, 1996). Five points have been highlighted: authenticity of 1) form and design, 2) material, 3) site, 4) technique and workmanship, and finally 5) authenticity of function. Nevertheless, despite the efforts of the Nara Conference, some criteria are still open to question: a historical monument is frequently the result of modifications, repeated interventions (including preservation interventions), renovation of materials, changes in use and setting, all occurring over the centuries (Petzet, 1995). In this regard reconstruction can hardly reproduce the organic state of a building, but just attempts to respect its complexity. The problem of authenticity of built heritage becomes even more complicated when related to timber structures. In Bioi paralleloi (Parallel Lives), Plutarch posed the problem of authenticity as a philosophical dilemma, which he explained using the metaphor of the repairs of a mythical timber handwork: To what extent could the
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE

65

wooden ship of the Argonauts be considered still authentic after the original decayed material had been gradually removed and replaced with new (Plutarch, 1914)? In the case of the Pieve in Cavalese, given the irremediable lost of the original material and the lack of adequate documentation of the original state, the challenge of pursuing authenticity in reconstruction has been faced by taking into account the shortcomings of the results of a thorough multidisciplinary investigation. 3. TYPOLOGICAL ANALYSIS The historicaltypological analysis is an important step of the survey phase in the restoration process. This analysis becomes fundamental in reconstruction, especially when other sources of information are lacking. In this case, reconstruction gains by comparison with typologically similarartifacts. This approach confirms the assumption that historical buildings are documents, providing an insight into past cultures and containing precious information about techniques and formal languages of the architectural production of a certain area and period. The following discussion reports the typological reconstruction of the naves roof and the Firmian Chapel roof in the Pieve to highlight the different intricacies and results of such analysis. 3.1 The Naves Roof The reconstruction of the naves roof has been based on some photographs, taken some weeks before the fire, the remnants of the burned timber elements on the site, and the survey of three nearby and contemporary structures. The general geometry of the main roof, in particular the pitches, has been deduced from the triangular profile of the masonry gable and the remnants of the partially burnt wall plates. The photographs of the interior of the roof show some irregularities that have been reproduced in the new structure. In particular the naves roof ridge is out of alignment both with the longitudinal axis of the plan and with the apses roof ridge; hence the pitches of the two roofs are not continuous. Moreover, the lowest tie beams are not horizontal, and their slight inclination has been approximately estimated using as reference lines the masonry courses of the gable. The photographs permitted also to highlight the contingent analogies between the roof of the Pieve and the roofs of the other surveyed churches. This survey has been conducted on churches in the neighboring areas and on churches of the same age, considering the number and layout of their aisles as well as the height and the slope of their roof pitches. The comparative study, however, gave only partial answers about the original features of the vanished roof. Indeed, by definition, an artifact is unique even if it belongs to a certain typology, it rarely adheres to a canonical form, while often containing several variations on the theme. In timber structures, variation happens at different scales, from the details such as the joints to the overall structural configuration. Comparison was made of the contemporary (fifteenth century) roofs of the churches of Nostra Signora in Egna, Santi Martiri in Sanzeno and San Giovanni in Vigo di Fassa (Sommariva, 2003). In all the examined roofs, the trusses are closely spaced (approximately 90 to 100 cm), thus reducing the scantlings. Figure 4 shows the geometric schemes of the trusses in the three churches analyzed. In all these churches as well as in the Pieve, roof framing has to accommodate the interior vaulting that rises
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

66
Villa (Egna)

M. PIAZZA AND M. RIGGIO


Sanzeno Vigo di Fassa

Figure 4. Schemes of the roof trusses in Villa (Egna), Sanzeno, and Vigo di Fassa.

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

higher than the wall plates of the building. In Vigo di Fassa (Figure 4 c), because of the presence of the vaulted nave, the roofs are framed with a so-called raised bottom chord truss or scissor truss. This truss is characterized by a two-member bottom chord, with each member rising at an angle and terminating in the opposite principal rafter. In Vigo di Fassa the longitudinal stability is entirely provided by the boarding. Conversely in Egna (Figure 4a) horizontal straining beams are jointed at the rafters at different levels and braced by members rising from the outer ends of the beam at the lower level. In this case, hammer beams bear the posts and the struts at the lowest level. The load-bearing trusses alternate with a bracing frame, parallel to the truss. Longitudinal stability is ensured by timber braces, placed between the rafters in the plane of the roof, as well as by longitudinal bracing frames. The roof in Sanzeno (Figure 4b) is characterized by two different structural systems: in one half, trusses with posts and horizontal straining beams are present, as in Vigo di Fassa, whereas, in the second half, scissor-braced trusses, similar to the ones in Egna, are used. Even if a unique recurrent structural form cannot be identified from the comparison of the analyzed roofs, the survey permitted better interpretation of some characteristics of the lost roof, otherwise difficult to evaluate simply from the partial views of the original interiors. Structural frames, with either load-bearing or bracing functions, are present both in Cavalese and in Egna. Whereas in Egna two frame types alternate in a simple sequence, three frame types are present in the Pieves roof. Some variations in the form of each frame can be seen in the photographs, especially at the lowest level of the roof. Apart from these variations, two load-bearing truss types can be pinpointed: scissor-braced trusses, which are very similar to the ones in Vigo di Fassa, and trusses with horizontal tie beams and struts connecting the lowest tie with the rafters, which are dissimilar to all the frames in the other churches analyzed. In the new Pieve roof, the system of three truss types that is repeated along the roof axis is redesigned. The main load-bearing system consists of two alternating truss types (Figure 5 A and B ). In truss type A, three horizontal straining beams connect the rafters at different levels and diagonal braces connect the lowest of these to the rafters. The truss type B is a scissor truss with additional horizontal straining beams at two levels. Between the series of the two trusses, one complementary frame, bearing on the wall plates and on timber pillars, is interposed (Figure 6). It bears the longitudinal bracing members both at the level of the hammer beams and at the level of the straining beams.
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE

67

Figure 5. The naves trusses (type A and type B).

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Figure 6. The roof-framing module.

Strong similarities can be found in the carpentry details of all the roofs. Plain laps, such as the half laps at the crossing and the lap dovetails, as well as scarf joints were usually put together with pegs. Birdsmouth joints were used to connect inclined members in the areas were high stresses occur. The only kind of ironwork present in the analyzed churches was square nails. These nails have been found in the wreckage of the Pieves roof as well. Square nails made their appearance in the mid-1700s and
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

68

M. PIAZZA AND M. RIGGIO

began dominating the market in the following century. Hence, in the examined roofs, they were used as joint reinforcements, in repair work. Steel dowel-type fasteners have been used in the new roof of the Pieve also as local reinforcements. 3.2 The Timber Frame Dome of the Firmian Chapel The Classical Firmian Chapel was built in the second half of the seventeenth century. A masonry domical vault covers the square space of the chapel and rises over an octagonal drum on pendentives. The timber roof was erected over the drum and formed an octagonal, helmet-like dome. A collar around the base, which served to drain off precipitation, accompanied the dome. A forged iron cross on a ball topped the cupola. The origin of timber domed roofs can be traced to the Middle East in Early Christian churches. In most cases these roofs consist of a double-dome, with elements carrying the boarding and an outer weathering surface, arranged either along the meridians or along the parallels and sometimes braced or partially carried by the masonry dome below. Arabic and Byzantine architecture assimilated and spread this building tradition throughout Europe. In Venetian architecture some brilliant examples of timber domes are the roofing of San Marcos Basilica and Santa Maria della Salute (both Venice, Italy). Whereas these examples are hemispherical wide-span domes, different forms were developed, first in Eastern Europe, to cap bell towers and other similar buildings. Indeed, introduced in its later Byzantine form, the onion dome gradually assumed the typical bulbous shape during the thirteenth century, perhaps in response to weather conditions (this shape sheds snow easily, preventing it from accumulating at the seam between the dome and the drum). In Trentino, the tradition of the onion-shaped roofs can be ascribed to the Germanic influences. In the course of time a wide range of solutions were developed for the curved timber frame of the dome. The evolution of these techniques led to the development of two forms of laminated timber, the precursor of glued laminated timber (glulam). The older type of laminated timber derives from the ideas of French architect Philibert de lOrme (1510 to 1570) (de lOrme 1561). This approach used boards cut to a curve and assembled side by side to form timber arches. The other method, developed first by the French colonel Armand Rose Emy (17711851) in 1825, involves fastening boards one above the other and curving them to form the arch. In timber domes, radial spatial frames are also necessary as bracing system. In wide-span domes, eventually crowned by lanterns, these structures can be properly considered architectural machines, with both load-bearing and bracing functions. But even in smaller structures, the internal spatial frame is often quite complex. The wide variability of framing types used in this kind of structure and the lack of both material and documentary evidence made the reconstruction of the Firmian Chapel roof a particularly challenging task. The first problem consisted in reconstructing the shape and geometry of the lost roof based only on pictures of the exterior. For this purpose a method has been adopted, based on the digital modeling of the representative lines and points, such as the curves of the groins, at the intersection of the faces, the eave lines, and the apex of the dome. The digital three-dimensional wire model has been interactively arranged superimposing it and the scanned images of different views, as shown in Figure 7. The survey drawings, provided after the fire, allowed a digital model to be made of the masonry structures. The irregularity in the geometry of the drum as well as of the
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE

69

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Figure 7. Digital reconstruction of the Firmian Chapels roof.

extrados of the vault is reflected in the roof geometry. Furthermore, the axis of the timber dome is centered neither with the axis of the underlying vault nor with the centre of the drum. As result each groin curve is different from the others. Once the shape and dimensions of the extrados of the dome had been established, the next stage was the design of the timber load-bearing structure. In particular, the curved plank roof was designed according to the technique developed by de lOrme, while the lay-out of the internal radial frame was based on similar examples reported in old carpentry books (Warth, 1900). 4. AUTHENTICITY IN MATERIAL: SOME OBSERVATIONS Chemical and dendrochronological analyses were conducted to establish the species of timber and to date the structures. Dendrochronological analysis considered 18 samples taken from elements ruined during the fire and by the few, burned, elements that remained in situ. The results are shown in Table 1. Today most preservation experts concerned with timber buildings subscribe to the doctrine of using traditional materials and techniques in preservation work. Nevertheless traditional methods of repair presuppose the availability of timber of the same species and grading as the historic material (e.g., same growth circumstances, same seasoning techniques) as well as the availability of carpenters familiar with traditional tools and techniques. In contrast, where traditional techniques prove inadequate. . . and we can add unreplicable . . .the consolidation of a monument can be achieved by the use of any modern technique for conservation and construction, the efficacy of which has been shown by scientific data and proved by experience, as stated in the article 10 of the Venice Charter and asserted by many authors afterwards (Mader, 1991) (ICOMOS, 2003).
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

70

M. PIAZZA AND M. RIGGIO Table 1 Results of the dendrochronological analysis (DendroData s.a.s. Verona, Italy)

Element N 1 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23

Location sacristy / Purlin, IV bay / Nave Nave Nave Nave Nave Nave Wall plate/gable Wall plate/Rosario chapel gable Wall plate/gable Wall plate/south Board/gable Beam/gable Wall plate/Firmian Chapel Wall plate/southern sacristy

Species Larix decidua Mill. Picea abies Karst. Larix decidua Mill. Larix decidua Mill. Larix decidua Mill. Larix decidua Mill. Larix decidua Mill. Larix decidua Mill. Larix decidua Mill. Larix decidua Mill. Larix decidua Mill. Picea abies /Larix decidua Larix decidua Mill. Larix decidua Mill. Larix decidua Mill. Larix decidua Mill. Pinus sp. Picea abies Karst. Larix decidua Mill.

Dating 1571 AD / 1544 AD 1607 AD 1592 AD 1568 AD 1598 AD / / / / / / / / / / / /

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Because of the importance of churches, high quality timber was generally used for their roof, and the elements were sorted using primitive forms of visual strength grading. Today formal grading rules are established, but these rules are conceived to manage lumber strength and stiffness variability within the sawmill production (UNIEN 338, 1997). The Italian code, concerning on-site inspections of timber members (UNI 11119, 2004) permits the grading of elements for which the features do not meet the requirements of the categories used for new structural timber. Nevertheless, a recent research work (Piazza and Riggio, 2006) highlighted the limits of the actual codes to effectively evaluate old timber on site. The problem of the assessment of the mechanical properties of old timber is a very topical question, which is currently debated also within the International Union of Laboratories and Experts in Construction Materials, Systems and Structures (Bagneux, France) Technical Committee of the Applied Science and Technology In-situ assessment of structural timber. During the survey of the other contemporary structures a qualitative appraisal of timber elements was made (Sommariva, 2003). The general good quality of the material, expressed in terms of low defectiveness, is also dependent on the limited dimensions of the elements, in the examined roofs. In the three nearby churches as well as in the Pieve the main loadbearing structures of the roof were made of larch wood (Larix decidua), because of the higher mechanical properties and natural durability of this timber species, in comparison with the other local species (Picea abies, Abies alba). For the reconstruction of the Pieves roof, so called duo-glued wood was used, which can be considered equivalent to massive timber, according to the Deutsches Institut fur Normung (DIN) 1052 (1988). This choice allowed the use of the same species as the original (Larix decidua), overcoming the difficulties of providing high-grade large timber scantlings and of supplying structural dimensioned elements with the appropriate moisture content.
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE

71

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

To ensure adequate strength and dimensional stability, the material has been accurately selected and seasoned, as certified, according to European codes, and tested through quality controls (visual strength grading). A minimal strength class equal to S13 (DIN 4074, 1989) was required especially to minimize the effects of shrinkage in the seasoned larch elements. The mean moisture content, lower than 18%, ensures an acceptable dimensional stability of the elements on site, thus reducing the risk of selfstresses, particularly dangerous in highly statically indeterminate structures. We must note that the duo-glued wood elements are characterized by maximum cross-section dimensions (usually 160 240 mm) that did not allow the construction of the main beams over the southern sacristy and the timber columns over the nave. In those cases, composite elements have been used with a special arrangement (X-shaped) of doublethreaded screws used as connectors (Figure 8). The two-layer diagonal boarding consists in spruce boards (Picea abies) nailed together and connected by screws to the load-bearing members. Wall plates of reinforced glulam (Piazza et al., 2002) replace the original ones and also brace the roof as well as tie it to the masonry wall. The dome structure of the Firmian Chapel is composed of a grid of laminated timber ribs. The boards are not cut and shaped at the intrados, to avoid cutting the fibers and to prevent splitting along the grain. Table 2 provides a list of the materials used for the roof carpentry. The traditional carpentry joints, present in the original structure, have been reproduced. To conform to modern design criteria, metal reinforcements have been used in order to maintain the functionality of the connection in adverse and unpredictable conditions. Indeed, traditional timber joints rely on direct contact and friction only, hence, without reinforcements, unloading of compression elements may lead to disconnection of elements and, in extreme conditions, to structural collapse (Piazza and Parisi, 2000). Connectors are also used in lapped joints to avoid splitting along the grain (Figure 9). 5. STRUCTURAL ANALYSIS The design of a lost structure, with the intention of reestablishing its original state is a demanding task. Indeed, does structural authenticity meet modern standards? Moreover,

Figure 8. Detail of the composite timber pillar.

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

72

M. PIAZZA AND M. RIGGIO Table 2 Materials used for the timber carpentry

Element Trusses

Material Duo-glued wood

Details 2 lamellas (Larix deciduas), strength class S13 (DIN 4074) Adhesive: Phenol-Resorcinol-Formaldehyde resin Glulam (Picea abies), strength class BS14 (DIN 4074) Lamellas thickness: 33 mm. Adhesive: Phenol-Resorcinol-Formaldehyde resin Adhesive for timber-bars: epoxy resin Reinforcement: steel bars AISI 304 L (16 mm) Connections: double-threaded screws (x-shape arrangement) Adhesive: epoxy resin Spruce (Picea abies Karst.), strength class S10 (DIN 4074), 20-mm thick Special double-threaded screws ( 8,2 mm/ 6,5 mm) Steel rods with wooden nuts ( 20 mm)

Wall plates Reinforced glued laminated timber (glulam)

Pillars

Two-layer boarding Connectors Carbon steel

Compositeduo-glued wood Boards

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Figure 9. Detail of a lap-joint reinforcement.

which state must be reestablished? The probable original state, at the completion of the construction, or better the last state, just before the loss of the artifact? Actually, authenticity of cultural heritage could be either synchronic, at term referring to a given period of time, or diachronic, at term referring to a continuing process over the time. Neither state can be exactly reproduced, and the latter state is the most difficult to define. In fact, often the old structures are the result of settlements, local failures, and repeated interventions. In this work, the reconstruction has been performed conforming to the theoretical original structural behavior as well as according to the modern scientific and technological achievements and standards. Moreover, the structural analysis of similar typologies and the analysis of their damage helped to reconstruct the evolutionary structural behavior of the roofs and to avoid some faults. The choice to keep the structural behavior of the original typology avoids changing the load transmission to the underlying masonry structures. Reconstruction, in this case, evokes a holistic approach, in which the behavior of the whole and the interdependency of its parts are considered. In accordance with that perspective, numerical models of the single substructures and of the whole complex allowed the study of the overall behavior of the structure as well as the analysis of particularly delicate parts, such as the connections.
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE

73

5.1 Geometric, Mechanical and Loading Models All timber members of the roofs frames have been modeled as beam elements, which are uniaxial elements with tension, compression, and bending capabilities, to consider the different behavior of the structure related to different stiffness of the joints (pinned or full moment-resistant). Traditional timber connections usually exhibit semi-rigid behavior, difficult to accurately model because of its dependence on the geometrical and mechanical characteristics of the element at each joint (Piazza and Parisi, 2000; Piazza et al., 2005; Chang, 2004). The two extreme hypotheses of rigid joints and hinges permitted, in one regard the highlighting of structural problems at the connections, such as stress concentrations, and in another regard the evaluation of the behavior of the overall structure or substructure as well as of its members, far from the connections. The assumption of rigid joints has been used in particular for the dovetail joints, for the analysis of the local effects at the notches. Timber has been modeled as linear elastic; the mechanical characteristics of the material are noted in Table 3. The lean-to roof over the northern aisle consists of three basic framing components: the three common rafters, on which the roof covering is laid, bear on purlins, that are laid on the principal rafters. The roofs over the northern aisle and the sacristy can be easily analyzed by considering the common rafters as continuous beams, transmitting the loads from the overlying boarding. The purlins of the sacristy are simply supported beams with point loads, whereas, in the northern aisle, the purlins can be modeled as continuous beams, bearing on the principal rafters. The Chapels roofs and the roofs over the nave and the apse have more complex static behavior. Both the roofs, over the Rosarios and Firmian Chapels, are spatially framed, forming an interlocking beam grid, acting as one structural and bracing element. These structures, as well as the trusses of the main roof over the nave, are highly statically indeterminate, meaning that several possible load paths can carry the load. A spatial model has been used to study the behaviors of the Rosarios Chapel roof framing, which is structurally connected to the naves roof. Indeed, two nave trusses and the longitudinal trusses framing the chapels roof form a unique structural system (Figure 10).

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Table 3 Mechanical properties of larch wood (Larix decidua)* Stress Bending Compression Tension Compression Tension Shear Shear Torsion Young modulus Shear modulus Direction // fibers // fibers // fibers ? fibers ? fibers // fibers ? fibers E// G Allowable values (MPa) 13.0 11.0 9.0 2.0 0.05 0.9 0.9 1.0 10500 500

*Softwood: strength class S13 according to DIN 1052-1/A1

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

74

M. PIAZZA AND M. RIGGIO

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Figure 10. Timber frames of the Rosario Chapels roof.

The roof of the nave has a modular scheme that reflects the sequence of the bays. Hence, a symmetrical model of the trusses between two consecutive pillars (approximately 5.30 m longitudinally spaced) has been analyzed. Because of the presence of a raised bottom chord, instead of a base-tied bottom chord, the structural unit of the naves roof acts more as an arch than as a truss. The presence of beams in compression and lap joints required the use of large scantlings (Table 4). Trusses have been spaced taking into account their original distance (less than 1 m). The trusses and the gable are both braced by a two-layer diagonal boarding in the plane of the roof (Figure 11). The internal joints of the frames are further braced either by means of boards at the first level tie beams, where a gangway has been laid, or by diagonal struts, longitudinally arranged. The framing of the hipped roof over the apse is similar to the one over the nave but it has been analyzed separately, being structurally independent. The behavior of the spatial frame of the hipped roof has been studied modeling the whole roof. The portion of roof corresponding to the gabled pitches is framed with six identical trusses, bearing on the wall plates and on two longitudinal horizontal beams. The latter are supported by a transversal frame that bears on pilasters between the two bays of the

Table 4 Cross sectional dimensions of the main roof elements Element type Rafter Tie beam Chord (double-beam) Hammer beam Longitudinal beam (bracing system) Pillar Pillar (composite) Longitudinal beam (load-bearing system) (double-beam) Dimensions (mm) 160 160 160 160 100 160 (each element, 160-mm spaced) 100 200 (each element, 160-mm spaced) 160 240 240 160 320 160 160 200 (each element, 160-mm spaced)

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE

75

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Figure 11. Two-layer diagonal boarding of the Rosario Chapels roof.

apse. The longitudinal beams, supporting the trusses, meet a transverse horizontal beam that reduces the span of the hip jacks and prevent their sagging. Loading conditions were determined according to the national (D.M.LL.PP., 1996) and European codes. For the steeply sloping roof of the nave and the apse, wind loads cause the more dangerous loading condition, whereas snow loads are concentrated towards the bottom where snow guards hold the snow. Nevertheless, because of the specific geographic location and the height above sea level, the codes give also stringent indications for the determination of basic snow loads. Combinations of negative and positive wind pressure and snow loads on two or three slopes have been considered. Moreover a limit state has been considered for a condition of negative wind pressure and reduced dead loads (i.e., characteristic wood density value equal to 380 kg/m3), to check the behavior of roof connections and roofto-wall connections towards uplift loads. 5.2 Results of Numerical Analysis Figures 12, 13, and 14 are examples of plots of the finite element model analysis. They show models at different levels of magnification. In particular, Figure 12 represents a global model that considers the behavior of the roof in relation to the underlying masonry structures. In Figure 13 the complete structural system of the roof of the apse is modeled, and a module of the naves roof is represented in Figure 14.
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

76

M. PIAZZA AND M. RIGGIO

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Figure 12. Plot of the FEA results. Global model (one bay module).

Figure 13. Plot of the FEA results. Model of the Apses roof.

Figures 15, 16, and 17 report the axial, bending and shear stresses in the elements belonging to the single trusses of the naves roof (between two consecutive pillars). Some differences are clearly evident between the correspondent elements of identical trusses that are differently positioned along the nave (i.e. characterized by different distances from the timber columns belonging to the load-bearing frame in the naves roof) (Figure 14). This finding clearly demonstrates the complex three-dimensional behavior of this timber roof, the consequent necessity for a three-dimensional analysis
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE

77

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Figure 14. Plot of the FEA results. The roof framing of the nave.

of the global structure, and the inconsistency of single two-dimensional analyses of single trusses (model A, model B, main bearing frame). This problem occurs very often in ancient timber roof structures, which frequently exhibit a quite complex threedimensional static behavior. Such behavior, commonly involving considerable redundancy, ensures good structural performance that can accommodate large accidental loads or even local failures. The results of the finite element model analysis show that the value of shear stresses is in some areas higher (approximately 6% to 8%) than the allowable stresses for principal loads conditions. For a load condition that includes wind loads, the value of allowable stresses can be 25% higher (DIN 1052, 1988). Hence, in this case the stresses are within acceptable limits. For all other normal stresses parallel to the grain, the values in each element are sufficiently small: this finding is clearly the consequence of the particular types of carpentry joints adopted (e.g., half laps, lap dovetails, scarf joints). Indeed, in these types of traditional timber trusses, the most critical situations usually occur at the joints level (i.e., in the element, but near the joint that connects this element to another, referred to as a check on the connection). Because of this occurrence, detail verifications have been performed to check the behavior of connections, as well as of other critical areas of the structure (UNI EN1995-1-1, 1995). The carpentry joints are always checked with reference to the results of both the numerical models implemented (hinge or rigid internal joints). As already reported, the hypothesis of rigid joints (with regard to the relative rotation) results in stress concentrations at the connections and is generally the most severe situation for the analysis of the joint behavior. The results of this check guided some design choices, particularly to control the load path along the members and to avoid dangerous structural faults. For instance, where the risk of splitting was high, a number of special double-threaded screws were always inserted to prevent the development of such a fissure type or, simply, to prevent the propagation of the split.
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

78

M. PIAZZA AND M. RIGGIO

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Figure 15. Axial stresses in two consecutive trusses (Type A): envelope of minimal (a) and maximal (b) values for different load combinations.

6. CONCLUSION The design choices in the case of the complete destruction of an ancient artifact depend on the importance of the artifact itself. The availability of material and documental evidence represent an important precondition for carrying out reconstructions according to the Venice Charter. Nevertheless when other sources of information are lacking, some aid is provided by the typological analysis of similar artifacts. The typological study has to be coupled with the structural analysis, as well
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE

79

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

Figure 16. Bending stresses in two consecutive trusses (Type A): envelope of maximal values for different load combinations.

Figure 17. Shear stresses in two consecutive trusses (Type A): envelope of maximal values for different load combinations.

as with all the other methods adopted in the survey phase, in order to provide a scientifically based reconstruction. Furthermore, the need to meet present-day structural standards often requires some modifications to the original structure. Nevertheless the authenticity of the monument must be preserved, despite these modifications. Authenticity does not
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

80

M. PIAZZA AND M. RIGGIO

exclude the considered use of modern technologies and methods in reconstruction, thus distinguishing the modern intervention from the original. Gustavo Giovannoni (1873 to 1947), one of the Italian fathers of restoration, had already observed that the topic of the reconstruction can be extraordinary wide because either the adaptation of both new procedures and construction materials is involved (Giovannoni 1945).

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

7. ACKNOWLEDGMENT The project described in the article is the result of many contributions: Alta sorveglianza Soprintendenza Beni architettonici P.A.T. (S. Flaim, M. Cunaccia, G. Bellotti, D. Lattanzi, M. Franzoi); architectural design: S. Facchin, Cavalese, Trento; structural design: Turrini Engineering Consulting, Padua; timber works: H. Amplatz, P. Lantschner; dendrochronology analysis: DendroData s.a.s., O. Pignatelli; geo` metric survey: Geogra srl, Padua; support to geometrical reconstruction (Firmian Chapel): GraphiTech foundation, R. De Amicis, Trento.

8. REFERENCES
Beltrami, L. (1912). 72 giorni ai lavori del Campanile di S. Marco, 1903. Il Campanile di San Marco Riedificato, Studi, Ricerche, Relazioni a cura del Comune di Venezia. Venice: Carlo Ferrari. Boito, C. (1989). I restauri in architettura. Dialogo primo. In Questioni pratiche di Belle Arti. 1893. Reprint. Crippa M.A., ed.Il nuovo e lantico in architettura, Milan: Jaca Book. Chang, W., Hsu, M., Chen, C.J. (2004). Estimating rotational stiffness of timber joints by using fractional experiments combined with computer simulation. Proceeding of the 8th WCTE Conference, Lathi, Finland: June 1417, 2004. de lOrme, P. (1561). Nouvelles inventions pour bien bastir et a petit frais. Librairies-Imprimerie Reunies: Paris (reprint 1894). DIN 1052:1988. Holzbauwerke - 1. Berechnung und Ausfuhrung, 2. Mechanische Verbindungen, 3. Holzhauser in Tafelbauart, Berechnung und Ausfuhrung, Berlin: Deutsches Institut fur Normung. DIN 4074:1989. Teil 1: Sortierung von Nadelholz nach der Tragfahigkeit - Nadelschnittholz, Berlin: Deutsches Institut fur Normung. D.M. LL.PP. 16.01.1996. Norme tecniche relative ai Criteri generali per la verifica di sicurezza delle costruzioni e dei carichi e sovraccarichi in G.U. 5-2-1996, n.29. Dvorak, M. (1916). Katechismus der Denkmalpflege, Vienna: Verlag von Julius Barda. Emy, A.R. (1856). Traite dellArt de la Charpentre. 1841. Romano, G.A, trans. Venice: Antonelli. Giovannoni, G. (1945). Il restauro dei monumenti. Roma: Cremonese. ICOMOS International Wood Committee. (2003). Principles for the Preservation of Historic Timber Buildings, 14th Symposium in Patzcuaro Michoacan, Mexico November 1014 2003. ICOMOS (1964). International Charter for the Conservation and Restoration of Monuments and Sites, II International Congress of Architects and Technicians of Historic Monuments, Venice, May 2531 1964. Larsen, K.E. (1992). A note on the authenticity of historic timber buildings with particular reference to Japan. In Proceedings of the 8th ICOMOS International Wood Committee (IIWCC), Kathmandu, Patan, and Bhaktapur, Nepal, November 2325, 1992. Larsen, K.E. (ed.) (1996). Nara Conference of Authenticity Proceedings, Trodheim-Tokyo. Tapir Publishers/Agency for Cultural Affairs, Japan. Larsen, K. E., Marstein, N. (2000). Conservation of historic timber structures. Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann.
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081

TIMBER ROOFS OF THE CHURCH OF THE PIEVE IN CAVALESE

81

Mader, G.T. (1991). Methoden und Verfahren zur Erhaltung historischer Holzbaukonstruktionen. In Untersuchungen an Material und Konstruktionen historicher Bauwerke, 5768.Arbeitshefte des Sonderforshungsbereiches 315 Erhalten historisch bedeutsamer Bauwerke,10. Karlsruhe: Universitat Karlsruhe,. Petzet, M. (1995). In the full richness of their authenticity the Test of the Authenticity and the New Cult of Monuments. In Larsen, K.E., ed. Nara Conference of Authenticity Proceedings, 8599) TrondheimTokyo: Tapir Publishers/Agency for Cultural Affairs Japan,. Piazza, M., and Parisi, M. A. (2000). Mechanics of plain and retrofitted traditional timber connections, Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE 2000: 126 (12). Piazza, M., Zanuttini, R., and Berti S. (2002). Strutture di legno per unedilizia sostenibile (Timber structures for sustainable buildings). In Il Sole 24 ore. Milan, 106107. Piazza, M., Riggio, M., and Brentari, G. (2005). Strengthening and control methods for old timber trusses: the queen-post truss of the Trento theatre. In Proceedings of the 4th International Seminar on Structural Analysis of Historical Constructions, Padua, Italy, November 1013 2004. Leiden, The Netherlands: Balkema. Piazza M., and Riggio M. (2006). Limits of visual strength grading: old timber roof beams of Ai Caduti dellAdamello refuge. In Proceeding of the 11th International Conference on Structural Faults and Repair, Edinburgh, UK, June 1315 2006. Edinburgh: Engineering Techics Press. Plutarch. (1914). The Parallel Lives (Eng. trans.). Vol. 1, Loeb. Classical Library Ed. Riegl, A. 1903. Der moderne Denkmalkultus. Sein Wesen und seine Entstehung, ViennaLeipzig. Italian translation edited by Scarrocchia S., Il culto moderno dei monumenti, il suo carattere e i suoi inizi, Nuova Alfa Editoriale, Bologna, 1990. Ruskin, J. (1880). The Seven Lamps of Architecture. 2nd ed. George Allen: Sunnyside, Orpington, Kent, UK. Sommariva, M. (2003). Indagini distruttive e consolidamento di strutture lignee e murarie delledilizia ecclesiale trentina.Il caso della Pieve di Cavalese. Masters thesis, Structural Engineering, University of Trento. UNESCO (1972). Declaration from Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage, Paris, 17th October21st November 1972 [Available at http://whc.unesco.org/world_he.htm] Natural Heritage, Paris, 17th October21st November 1972. UNI EN 338:1997. Structural timber. Strength Classes. Milan: Ente Nazionale Italiano di Unificazione. UNI EN 1995-1-1: 1995. Eurocode 5. Design of timber structures. Part 1-1: general rules and rules for the buildings. Milan: Ente Nazionale Italiano di Unificazione, 1995. UNI 11119: 2004. Cultural Heritage - Wooden artifacts Load-bearing structures On site inspections for the diagnosis of timber members. Milan: Ente Nazionale Italiano di Unificazione. Viollet-le-Duc E.E. 1990. Restauration. In Dictionnaire raisonne de lArchitecture Francaise du ` XIe au XVIe siecle, vol. VIII. 1868. M.F. Hearn, ed. and trans., The Architectural Theory of Viollet-le-Duc, Cambridge, MA, pp.1416. Warth, O. (1900). Die Konstruktionen in Holz. Leipzig, Germany: Gebhardt.

Downloaded by [193.194.88.27] at 06:17 19 February 2012

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE 1(1): 6081