Works on Paper
The Works of Art on Paper Department maintains the historical integrity of the piece, while addressing concerns of long-term storage, display, and preservation with established methods in the field of paper conservation.
The Center's paper conservators encounter a variety of works, such as historical documents, drawings and prints, and screens, to pastels, watercolors, blueprints, and scrolls. The conservators treat each piece individually based upon information gathered during examination and testing.
The Paper Department’s approach is dependent upon a wide range of inherent properties in each sheet. The age, type of paper, media, scale, and previous campaigns of conservation are just a few considerations for each treatment approach. Many of these properties are easily affected by a variety of environmental, housing, and age-related factors.
Our conservators offer options for the treatment and preservation of your piece, along with advice on proper handling, storage, and care. Each work is treated with established methods and materials used throughout the field of paper conservation. For more complex treatments, conservators maintain an ongoing dialogue with clients.
Given the diversity of photographs, each picture is treated individually to maintain its historical integrity and the artist’s original intent.
The Center’s conservators have an in-depth understanding of the conservation of photographs and its history; treating pieces that range from fine art photography, to family portraits and everyday snapshots.
The conservators treat a multitude of works including: tintypes, daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, sepia, black and white, color, hand-colored, and contemporary photographic prints including chromogenic and lambda. For sentimental photographs that have been severely damaged, our Digital Restoration Department can help provide an alternative preservation solution.
Our conservators are able to handle bound materials and take great care to ensure the structural integrity of each volume. They treat damage to the pages, covers, spines, and bindings of early to modern books and bibles, as well as historic scrapbooks and photo albums.
The majority of treatments in this department begin with the stabilization of the book to ensure it can continue to be used safely. Stabilization includes treatments such as re-sewing the textblock, replacement hinges, and consolidation of leather or book cloth that may be delaminating from the covers and spine.
More complex, cosmetic treatments include the fabrication of new spines and covers, the refurbishment of existing covers, and the construction of custom-made clamshell boxes and archival housing.