This year’s Pro Patria stamps take us back to the Middle Ages and beyond. They feature a sculpture and a fresco in the process of being restored – a tribute to an increasingly important discipline when it comes to conserving artefacts of cultural history. The conservation and restoration of caltural and historic artefacts require specialist knowledge. Restoration specialists focus on various disciplines, such as buildings, paintings, sculptures, graphic art, written documents and materials. They work closely with heritage conservation authorities and traditional craftspeople. The work carried out by these specialists is extremely demanding and entails tremendous responsibility, as every item undergoing restoration is unique. To gain a real understanding of what’s involved, Daniel Peter, the designer of the new special stamps, asked these experts for some support. The design depicts the meticulous work performed using delicate tools on medieval works of unknown origin: there’s a Gothic wooden sculpture, presumably showing St Peter, and also a fresco from a church or chapel in the Alps. Both artefacts can be found at the Bern University of the Arts.