Renovation and Restoration

Ten Things to Love in What Is Now the Nation’s Largest Modern Art Museum

SFMOMA is finally open after three years of renovations, and it’s magnificent

The Washington Monument went through years of expensive restoration work following a 2011 earthquake.

NASA Responds to an S.O.S. of Historic Proportions

Rocket technology could save our (historic) structures from earthquakes

Seattle's Famous 'Gum Wall' Is Getting Scraped Clean

An estimated 1,000,000 pieces of chewing gum are stuck to the quirky attraction

When people come to the Smithsonian,” says lighting designer Scott Rosenfeld, (inside the gallery displaying the work of mixed media artist Gabriel Dawe) “they want to experience art. They don’t have to worry about spectrum.”

The Renwick's New Lighting Saves Energy, Money, Art, and Your Eyes, All at the Same Time

There’s way more to it than just screwing in the bulb and the museum’s chief lighting designer is turning it into an artform

An expert at work on a painting at the Opificio Delle Pietre Dure

Inside the Italian Art Hospital That Rescues Old Paintings

A catastrophic flood gave this Florence workshop a new mission

Volunteers are Struggling to Maintain New Orleans’ Iconic Tombs

Many cemetery vaults are crumbling due to weather, vandalism and disrepair

The dazzling estate where Al Capone lived and died fell into disrepair in the 70s and 80s. Now that a property investment firm has restored it and brought it up to code, the historic property will be available for video and photo shoots.

Look Inside the Restored Mansion Where Al Capone Lived and Died

A property firm just renovated the infamous gangster’s Florida estate after it had fallen into disrepair. Here’s what the lavish home looks like now

Evidence of a Seating Plan Discovered at the Colosseum

Restoration efforts reveal the red-painted numbers that would help ancient Romans find their status-dictated seats

Where the Buffalo Roam: Illinois

American bison are back in Illinois for the first time in 200 years

The Taj backs up against the once-vibrant Yamuna River, now often dried to the point where locals can walk in the riverbed.

How to Save the Taj Mahal?

A debate rages over preserving the awe-inspiring, 350-year-old monument that now shows signs of distress from pollution and shoddy repairs

The missions—built between 1769 and 1823 and extending in a chain of 600 miles from Sonoma to San Diego—stand as symbols of California's Spanish colonial past. Pictured is San Miguel's bell tower.

A Tour of California's Spanish Missions

A poignant reminder of the region's fraught history, missions such as San Miguel are treasured for their stark beauty

Designed by Polish-American Daniel Libeskind, the Zlota 44 building, which is under construction, may lift the city's profile.

Warsaw on the Rise

A new crop of skyscrapers symbolizes the Polish capital's effort to rebuild its downtrodden image

During gladiatorial games in the arena, a vast network of man-powered machinery made animals and scenery appear from beneath a wooden floor as if by magic.

Secrets of the Colosseum

A German archaeologist has finally deciphered the Roman amphitheater's amazing underground labyrinth

A cliff-face cavity is all that remains of one of two sixth-century Buddha sculptures, sublime expressions of Bamiyan's ancient kingdom.

Searching for Buddha in Afghanistan

An archaeologist insists a third giant statue lies near the cliffs where the Bamiyan Buddhas, destroyed in 2001, once stood

People of every income level and skin color mix comfortably on Rio's gorgeous beaches like here at Ipanema-Leblon.

Reinventing Rio

The dazzling but tarnished Brazilian city gets a makeover as it prepares for the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympic Games

At Villa Adriana, built by the emperor Hadrian in the second century A.D., these column surrounded a private retreat ringed by water.

Home Away From Rome

Excavations of villas where Roman emperors escaped the office are giving archaeologists new insights into the imperial way of life

In a letter to the Daguerreian Journal in 1851, Levi Hill claimed to have invented color photography.

A 160-Year-Old Photographic Mystery

In 1851, Levi Hill claimed he invented color photography. Was he a genius or a fraud?

Worry over the exquisite art—including an image of the protector goddess Tara—has fueled photographer Aditya Arya's efforts.

Glimpses of the Lost World of Alchi

Threatened Buddhist art at a 900-year-old monastery high in the Indian Himalayas sheds light on a fabled civilization

If destruction continues unimpeded, preservationists will run out of time to save Kashgar's Uighur quarter.

Demolishing Kashgar's History

A vital stop on China's ancient Silk Road, the Uighur city of Kashgar may lose its old quarter to plans for "progress"

A focal point for visitors today, the gateway sign says "Work Will Set You Free," a monstrous lie told to the men, women and children imprisoned there.

Can Auschwitz Be Saved?

Liberated in 1945, the Nazi concentration camp is one of Eastern Europe's most visited sites—and most fragile

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