James Licari B. Cons. (Hons.) attained the Bachelor degree in Conservation and Restoration with Honours from the Institute for Conservation and Restoration Studies, University of Malta. He is one of the first Maltese graduates to offer professional documentation, preservation, conservation-restoration, and maintenance services fulfilling the requirements laid out by international standards. His areas of specialisation are ceramics, glass, metals, stone and other composite materials (2003). He has work experience locally and internationally in the field of conservation and restoration of cultural heritage and offers a professional and efficient service in conservation/restoration, education and promotion of our cultural property.
He attended a seminar on the setting up scaffolding for heritage buildings at the Malta Centre for Restoration. He benefited from partaking in various conservation related projects in Malta, Celano Paludi (Abruzzo, Italy), Fossa Casale (Abruzzo, Italy)[September 2001 & July 2000], and Pompeii (Naples, Italy)[September 2003]. He co-ordinated an eight sessioned course on “The composition, deterioration and care of our cultural property/art”, for the general public (of which he presented two lectures) at AZAD in Valletta (February-April 2006). He lectured History of Art students at AZAD, Valletta (November 2004) and voluntarily lecturing in the IKONOS programme for the Preparatory Course at the Malta Centre for Restoration via video-conferencing to students in countries like Jordan, Greece, Morocco, Algeria and Malta (June-July 2003).
Once graduated he immediately embarked on the conservation project of the Church of the Assumption, Balzan. This project was mainly co-ordinated by him, with collaboration of two of his colleagues, who graduated in the same year. Following the completion of this ambitious project in three months, he went on to forming the conservation and restoration co-operative society, registered under the name of ReCoop (operating since 2003). Once founded he was elected President of the society. The following year he took on the position of Vice-president of the society, due to ill health that year. Over the current year he has served as marketing manager for ReCoop, in order as to promote the conservation-restoration interventions undertaken. Due to personal ethical reasons as well as advancement of the profession, Mr Licari resigned from the co-operative society (May 2006). He is currently initiating a new Conservation and Restoration Company, named Heritage-Resco.
He also formed part of the three members who initiated the Malta Association of Professional Conservator-Restorers and also forms part of the founding committee of management. The innovation of such a professional association lies in the ability to perform holistically as a group of dedicated professional conservator-restorers who graduated in different areas of specialisation, for the good of cultural heritage.
Throughout the past seven years he worked on various prestigious artefacts belonging to various museums, which included:
Ongoing supervision of the maintenance and restoration works being carried out on the marble paving in The Grandmaster’s Palace Valletta (June 2006-…)
The conservation-restoration of some chandeliers in San Anton Palace, Balzan (July 2006)
Ongoing supervision of various maintenance and restoration works in St John’s Co-Cathedral, Valletta (2005-2006)
Supervision of the conservation of the façade of St Dorothy’s convent in Mdina (Jan 2005-Feb 2006)
Conservation projects for CHOGM 2005 [eight marble lapidae in the entrance of the Grandmaster’s Palace, a crystal chandelier in the same palace as well as four marble busts and a Sciortino sculpture in Auberge de Castille] (Nov 2005)
The conservation of bronze statue on ‘the witch of Agnesi’ belonging to the UK Government Art Collection (Nov 2005)
The bronze and stone war memorial (Christ the King and four panels) in Victoria, Gozo (Oct 2005)
The unique bronze door of the Naxxar Parish Church (May-Aug 2005)
Metal, stone and composite artefacts from the Palazzo Falson (Norman House) collection Mdina (2004-2005)
Conservation of ceramic, glass, bronze, iron, bone, stone and marble artefacts from the Roman Domus Museum collection, Rabat (Oct 2003-Jan 2004)
Conservation of stonework of exterior and interior of the Church of the Assumption, Balzan (July-Sept 2003)
Conservation of marble and plaster of Paris in the Fine Arts Museum, Valletta (Dec 2002 – Mar 2003)
Conservation of marble statue of Leah, [Early 20th century] in the Fine Arts Museum, Valletta (February – March 2002)
Ceramic, glass, metal, stone artefacts from Tas-Silg, Marsaxlokk, (Dec 1999 – May 2002)
Conservation of limestone statue from Salvatur Church, Kalkara (Nov–Dec 2001)
Conservation of lead eagles Eagle Fountains, St. George’s Square, Valletta (April – Oct 2001).
He also worked on a supervision agreement for Heritage Malta over the conservators of the Malta Centre for Restoration, within the Armoury (2004) as well as assessed and conserved some artefacts for a travelling exhibition (‘Crusades’) under the direction of the Superintendence of Cultural Heritage.
This long list of experience is increasing and building a very substantial holistic portfolio. He is further available to help out other N.G.O.s, local councils, parishes and private collectors to help conserve our cultural heritage. The conservator-restorer works constantly with an interdisciplinary approach to promote conservation-restoration culture and to perform conservation-restoration interventions, which are aimed at a better safekeeping of Cultural Heritage (especially Maltese) for future generations. His particular interest lies in spreading awareness of the importance of Cultural Heritage as part of Maltese culture and identity, an issue that he supports with responsibility, initiative and dedication.