Call for materials to be tested at The Met

The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s (The Met) Department of Scientific Research is embarking on an Institute of Museum and Library Services funded project to evaluate a wide variety of commonly used conservation, storage, shipping, and building supplies that are readily available and used in North America.  The goal is to determine the appropriateness of those materials for use near or in contact with cultural heritage objects, including natural history specimens. All results and data will be made publically available at no cost online.

We are currently seeking lists of the materials used by museums, libraries, archives, private conservators, collections managers, or anyone whose main business is the preservation, exhibition, transport, or handling of cultural heritage and natural history collections.  After collating and selecting a broad range of the most widely used and promising materials, we will conduct both the Oddy test and a chemical analysis of volatiles for each material.

If you are willing and interested in sharing information about materials used in your practice of preserving, displaying, storing, or shipping objects, please reply to to  The call for materials will be ongoing throughout the project, however, the main selection of materials for testing will occur by August 2017.  Those interested in contributing will be sent a basic spreadsheet where information such as make, model, supplier, and material type can be recorded.  Kindly note that we will select materials for testing based on this call; even if you utilize only a handful of materials, please consider contributing.

A Recap of IIC’s Point of the Matter Dialogue on Viral Images and Protest Art

On February 14th, conservators, archivists, curators, educators, artists, historians, and activists gathered in the Bonnie J. Sacerdote Lecture Hall at The Metropolitan Museum of Art for the International Institute for Conservation’s (IIC) Point of the Matter Dialogue, “Viral Images: Exploring the historic and conservation challenges of objects created for social protest and solidarity.” When organizers began planning this event two years ago, they could not have predicted just how timely this Point of the Matter Dialogue would be, in light of increased social unrest resulting from recent political and global events. Appropriately, a pink knitted ‘Pussy Hat’ could be spotted in the audience — a symbol of protest and solidarity from the historic Women’s Marches held worldwide just three weeks earlier.

The program focused on creative and expressive imagery used for social protest. Fine art, photography, and graphic design are all subject to endless replication and adaptation, becoming “viral images” that spin outwards on social media and the news – carrying with them powerful messages and gathering new meanings. Viral images can function as symbols for a specific social cause or an entire movement, can themselves become flash-points for social action, or can serve as documents of historic moments. Ephemeral by nature, they can prove to have long-term influence. IIC’s Point of the Matter Dialogue aimed to address the challenges involved in archiving this form of cultural heritage.

The organizers posed a series of questions as a starting point for discussion:

  • What happens to the artwork when the protesters leave?
  • Was it ever intended to be collected or preserved?
  • Is there a precedent for archiving these ephemeral materials?
  • Who is collecting them?
  • How do we preserve the intent and impact of these creative works for posterity?

The event included short presentations by panelists and a Q&A, both of which were live-streamed online and can now be viewed here. Before recording began, the program kicked off with a sneak preview of “STREETWRITE,” a musical film written and directed by Blanche Baker about street art and freedom of expression. This was followed by a performance and presentations by Artists Fighting Fascism: Rebecca Goyette, Brian Andrew Whiteley, and Kenya (Robinson). Those watching the video of this program may be interested in learning more about these artists and their work, as they were active participants in the Q&A session and their projects were cited several times by panelists and audience members (specifically Goyette and Whiteley’s recent video collaboration, (Robinson)’s #WHITEMANINMYPOCKET project, and Whiteley’s Trump Tombstone piece).

The panel included six speakers, who represented various stakeholders and decision-makers in this discussion: those who produce, document, collect archive, preserve, and study protest art and viral images. Ralph Young, a Professor of History at Temple University, discussed the history of dissent in America, touching on themes covered in his recent book and courses on this subject. A historical context for the concept of “viral images” was provided by Aaron Bryant, Curator of Photography and Visual Culture at the National Museum of African American History and Culture. Bryant discussed his approach as a curator for a history museum to collecting images and objects that represent historic events, changing ideas, and social movements (including Black Lives Matter protests).

Michael Gould-Wartofsky, a sociologist and author, related his experience reporting on Occupy Wall Street in 2011, highlighting the key role of social media and viral images for broadcasting protesters’ messages, and the challenges in reconstructing this digital archive. A case study for the practice of archiving this form of cultural heritage was provided by Lidia Uziel, Western Languages Division Leader for the Harvard Library: shortly after the 2015 terrorist attacks on the Charlie Hebdo headquarters in Paris, the university created an archive devoted to collecting and documenting the visual and textual materials produced in response to the event.  

Gregory Sholette, an artist, activist, and writer, discussed his personal involvement in the East Village art scene in the 1980s and the afterlives of artworks created for social movements as they are moved into the museum. In this vein, Christian Scheidemann, a conservator of contemporary art, presented examples of artworks created either as a form of protest or from protest materials and considered the decision-making process involved in exhibiting, preserving, and restoring these works.

After short presentations by the panelists, an hour was devoted to questions from the audience. The dialogue between the panelists and audience members moved beyond the prompts posed by the organizers, and included both practical and theoretical questions. The discussion touched on the life cycle of viral images and protest art, and the relationship of this ephemeral material to fine art. Participants considered the practical problem of how to determine what material to save in the aftermath of historic events when resources for its preservation are limited. Questions were also raised about the social and ethical responsibilities of conservators and archivists, our role in constructing and framing historical narratives, and the impact of our individual and innate biases. This in turn led to a frank conversation about the lack of diversity in the conservation field, a concern that has motivated the formation of the AIC Equity and Inclusion Working Group (NB: Readers may be interested in Sanchita Balachandran’s talk “Race, Diversity, and Politics in Conservation: Our 21st Century Crisis,” presented at the 2016 AIC Annual Meeting). These questions pointed to a number of potential topics for future events in the Point of the Matter Dialogue series.

Thank you to IIC and the Point of the Matter Dialogue organizers for such a productive and thought-provoking program! To watch the full program, click here.

Panelists and organizers for the IIC Point of the Matter Dialogue on Viral Images. (Photograph courtesy of Sharra Grow)
Back row: Christian Scheidemann, Michael Gould-Wartofsky, Aaron Bryant, Lidia Uziel, Ralph Young
Middle Row: Gregory Sholette, Blanche Baker, Rebecca Rushfield, Amber Kerr;
Front Row: Kenya (Robinson), Rebecca Goyette


Event: American Veterans for the National Endowment for the Humanities

American Veterans for the National Endowment for the Humanities: Voices of Democracy

American Veterans will gather in a non-partisan event in support of the National Endowment for the Humanities, and read scenes from classic literature, philosophy and rhetoric on democracy.

  • When: February 25, 2017 – from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
  • Where: Castle Clinton National Monument, 1 Bowling Green, New York, NY

For more details about the event, please visit:

Organized by: Peter Meineck, NYU Classics Professor, and head of the Aquila Theatre.


ACHP/HUD Secretary’s Award for Excellence in Historic Preservation Nominations Open

AIC would like to share the following message from the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP) and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD):

“I am pleased to announce the creation of a new joint award with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The ACHP/HUD Secretary’s Award for Excellence in Historic Preservation will honor historic preservation efforts with affordable housing and community revitalization successes. Agencies, developers, and organizations are encouraged to nominate projects or activities that advance the goals of historic preservation while providing affordable housing and/or expanded economic opportunities for low- and moderate-income families and individuals.

Preference will be given to projects and activities that do the following:

  • Promote the use of historic buildings for affordable housing, community development, and/or expanded economic opportunities
  • Include HUD funds or financing
  • Meet preservation guidelines
  • Contribute to local community revitalization efforts

This is an annual award. Nominations for the 2017 cycle are due by 11:59 p.m. PDT on March 27, 2017.

Nomination details can be viewed at Questions may be addressed to

We look forward to learning about your achievements!

Milford Wayne Donaldson FAIA
Advisory Council on Historic Preservation”

Belgian Committee of the Blue Shield Seeks Support to Fight Art Trafficking

AIC would like to share the following statement from the Belgian Committee of the Blue Shield:

“After the attacks of 22 March 2016, the Federal Government asserted its determination to combat terrorism in our country.

However, by royal decree of 27 October 2015 establishing the repartition of the personnel of the Federal Police (Belgian Monitor of 30 October 2015) it decided to abolish the ‘Art & Antiques’ section of the Federal Judicial Police, which endeavours to fight the illicit trafficking of works of art.

It is nevertheless well known that the illicit traffic in works of art is one of the sources of finance for international terrorism. In his discourse of 17 November 2015 at UNESCO, President Holland of France made the fight against the illicit traffic in works of art a priority for action:

‘The first of these priorities is the fight against the illicit trafficking in cultural property. It is important to know that at this moment, the terrorist organisation IS delivers archaeological permits and raises taxes on the works that will then supply the international black market, passing through French ports, havens for the handling and money-laundering, including in Europe.’

At the present time, several western countries are dedicating more staff and resources to combat the illicit trafficking of works of art. This is the case in the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Spain (24 staff versus 8 beforehand), the United States of America (16 staff versus 6 before) and above all France, which has a specialised unit of 25 people. Other countries are taking similar measures. Belgium is therefore resolutely marching against the tides of history.

In international colloquiums, Belgium was clearly identified as a main hub of the illicit trafficking of works of art. In abolishing – particularly now – the ‘Art and Antiquities’ unit of the Federal Judicial Police, our country does not give the right signals.

Several national and international organisations, namely INTERPOL and the UN, complained to the Federal Government about this measure, pointing out that Belgium is no longer able to fulfill its international obligations. Furthermore, the abolition of the judiciary unit ‘Art & Antiquities’ risks damaging the reputation of Belgium, already tarnished by criticism after the Paris attacks for the way in which our country handles the fight against terrorism.

In abolishing the ‘Art & Antiquities’ unit, a specialised contact group disappears. It will no longer be possible to reply to specific questions from Interpol, foreign customs services and other authorities and international organisations. Even worse, the database that is managed by this judicial section will no longer be updated. Belgium will become the weak link in the battle against the financing of terrorism and the illicit trafficking of works of art. It will be very difficult to repair the damage which will result and considerable financial means will be needed.

More alarmingly, Paris Match revealed recently that ‘one of the perpetrators of the deadly attacks at Zaventem airport and Maelbeek metro station in March of this year actively participated in the trafficking of works of art in Belgium, and relatively recently. Around him were other characters, apparently linked to Salah Abdeslam.’ Without being able to confirm that there could be a link between the attacks in Brussels and the illicit trafficking of works of art, this information should underline that the negligence of the Federal Government could cost us all dearly.

Sign the Petition (Site in French)

Minister of the Interior,
Minister of Justice,

In abolishing the ‘Art & Antiquities’ unit of the Federal Judicial Police, you are putting Belgian citizens, as well as the citizens of other countries, in danger.

The fight against terrorism, and therefore its financing, must be one of your priorities.

We ask you to reverse your decision to abolish the ‘Art & Antiquities’ unit of the Federal Judicial Police, and to work towards strengthening it.  We want see the restoration of Belgium’s image abroad through the respect of its international obligations and by lending support to the efforts to prevent new innocent victims.

The authors of the petition :

Myriam Serck-Dewaide
Gustaaf Janssens

The Belgian committee of the Blue Shield asbl, is a coordinating body bringing together representatives of Belgian authorities, both federal and federated, and international organisations, including experts in the protection and management of cultural heritage. It works towards the enforcement of compliance with The Hague Convention of 1954 and its Protocols in relation to the protection of cultural property in the case of armed conflict.

You can sign the petition here.

Call for Papers – Cultural Heritage Management Sessions (ASOR 2017)

Session Chairs: Glenn Corbett, American Center of Oriental Research (ACOR), and Suzanne Davis, Kelsey Museum of Archaeology, University of Michigan

We are seeking abstract submissions for the Cultural Heritage Management session(s) of the American Schools of Oriental Research annual meeting, which will be held in Boston, MA, November 15-18, 2017. This session welcomes papers concerning archaeological conservation and heritage management in terms of methods, practices, and case studies in areas throughout the Near East. For the 2017 meeting, we are especially interested in presentations focusing on:

·         site conservation and preservation activities

·         site management planning

·         engagement and education of local communities

Interested speakers should submit a title and abstract (max. 250 words) by February 15, 2017. Please see ASOR’s call for papers and instructions for submission here: Note that professional membership ($130) and registration for the Annual Meeting (~$175) are required at the time of abstract submission. Student rates are discounted.

Please send inquiries or questions to Glenn Corbett ( and Suzanne Davis (

Collections Care and Conservation at IMLS

Funding collections care at the nation’s museums has been a core function of the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) since its earliest days as the Institute of Museum Services (IMS), founded in 1976. This year we are celebrating our 20th anniversary as an agency that serves both museums and libraries, and our commitment remains as strong as ever. We have helped museums conduct conservation surveys as important first steps in identifying collections care needs and priorities. We have funded environmental surveys and subsequent improvements to help ensure appropriate conditions in collections storage and exhibit areas. We have paid for conservation treatments to prolong the lives of specific objects that communities hold dear, and we have supported conservation research that has benefited museums everywhere by developing protocols, generating research datasets, and creating rigorous training programs in collections care. IMLS-funded projects have extended across the entire spectrum of museums as defined by our legislation, and they have touched on virtually all museum disciplines.


Over the years, there have been modifications in IMLS funding programs, including those devoted to collections care. For the 2016 Joint AIC 44th Annual Meeting and the CAC ACCR 42nd Annual Conference in Montreal, I pulled together some numbers to see if we could assess the impact of these shifts, and now I have added the 2016 data, which just became available this fall.

I focused on the records for our two large programs for funding conservation and collections care in museums: Conservation Project Support, which was active from the beginning of IMS days through 2012, and Museums for America, which came into being in 2004 and is now our largest grant program for museums. In 2013, we folded Conservation Project Support into Museums for America, and we went to a single deadline for all IMLS museum grant applications. In 2014, we introduced a $5,000-$25,000 funding level with no cost share in Museums for America. To get an idea of how these actions may have impacted our grant making from the standpoint of numbers of applications submitted, the amount of funding requested, the number of awards made, and the amount of funding provided, I went back to 2011. 

Figure 1. Number of applications submitted to
IMLS in museum collections care/conservation
grant programs, 2011-2016.

By Numbers

These charts show the number of applications we received for collections care projects (Figure 1), the number of awards made (Figure 2), and the percent success in applications funded by year (Figure 3).

The obvious outlier here is 2011.That was the final year of our American Heritage Preservation Grants, which was a three-year program in which grants of $3,000 were made for the treatment of a single object or small group of objects.

The trend in the number of grants made and the percent awarded is upward since 2013, the year we combined Conservation Project Support with Museum for America. Since then, collections care and conservation projects have competed with educational, program, exhibition, and other types of projects, and they have done very well.

Figure 2. Number of grants awarded by IMLS in
museum collections care/conservation grant
programs, 2011-2016.
Figure 3. Percent success in applications funded
through IMLS museum collections care/
conservation grant programs, 2011-2016.

That this trend continued in and beyond 2014, when we introduced the $5,000-$25,000 no-cost-share option, suggests that this innovation has been successful. It seems particularly attractive to small museums for rehousing projects and to museums of all sizes for the often-hard-to-cost-share treatment projects.

Figure 4. Dollars requested from IMLS in museum collections care/conservation grant programs, 2011-2016.

By Dollars

The second set of charts shows the dollars requested for collections care by year (Figure 4), the dollars awarded by year (Figure 5), and the percent success in receiving dollars requested by year (Figure 6).

The picture here is quite different. The 2011 figures don’t seem quite so anomalous, and that makes sense, given that this unusual opportunity involved small amounts of money. We see a general upward trend in the percentage of dollars awarded from 2013 to 2016, which might reflect the introduction of the $5,000-$25,000 no-cost-share option. Collections projects are very well represented and very successful at that funding level. Increases in numbers of applications, number of awards, dollars requested, and dollars awarded in 2016 may reflect the explicit invitation for projects designed to broaden access to and expand use of museum collections. Most of these projects involve digital asset management specifically and information management more generally.

Figure 5. Dollars awarded through IMLS museum collections care/conservation grant programs, 2011-2016.


Figure 6. Percent success in receiving dollars
requested through IMLS museum collections care/conservation grant programs, 2011-2016.

By Project Type and Museum Discipline

In addition to the “how many” and “how much” questions, we are also asked (and we ask ourselves), “What did IMLS fund in ‘X’ this year?” It’s a perfectly legitimate question, but one to which until recently we were only respond with examples—or long lists of examples. We did not have the wherewithal to talk about what we funded across grant programs nor to look at changes through time.

Figure 7. Like the Sharpie, one grant project can have many tags. Source: 

We decided to do what taxonomically inclined museum people do, which is develop a system for classifying the awards we make according to some predetermined characteristics, record the data in a way that we could extract it easily, and then manipulate it to answer not only this question but also to discern patterns across grant programs and across time. Over the course of a few weeks, our indefatigable Museum Program Specialists tagged every grant award we had made since 2011, not only in collections care and conservation but in all areas of museum work.

Something to keep in mind here is that tags are not counts (Figure 7). One project may have a single tag, or it may have half a dozen, and for these purposes, that’s just fine. We just need to avoid the temptation to expect counts of tags to somehow equal the counts of projects we fund or to reflect a preferential emphasis of some kind.

For this look, we expanded beyond our large programs typically associated with collections care and conservation to include all our grant programs. In addition to Conservation Project Support and Museums for America then are National Leadership Grants for Museums, Museum Grants for African American History and Culture, and Native American/Native Hawaiian Museum Services. By using tags of “conservation,” “collections management,” and “digital asset management,” we can see how our grants have been distributed by both project category and by museum discipline for 2011-2016.

For this six-year period, the majority of conservation grants (Figure 8) have been awarded to art museums, followed by history, natural history/anthropology, general museums (which address more than one discipline), specialized museums (which address one very specific topic), and historic house/site museums. Internally, we always look carefully each year to see if there is a difference between what came in as applications and what we funded according to discipline. We are pleased to see that without fail, it is in alignment.

Figure 8. Number of funded conservation-tagged projects in all IMLS museum grant programs, 2011-2016, by museum discipline.

When we look at collections management work (Figure 9), best represented are art, history, general, and natural history/anthropology museums, followed by Native American/Native Hawaiian organizations, specialized museums, and arboretums/botanical gardens.

Figure 9. Number of funded collections management-tagged projects in all IMLS museum grant programs, 2011-2016, by museum discipline.

And when we look at the projects with digital asset management tags (Figure 10), they are most common in art museums, followed by history and natural history/anthropology museums (tied), general museums, Native American/Native Hawaiian organizations, and arboretums/botanical gardens and specialized museums (tied).

Figure 10. Number of funded digital asset management-tagged projects in all IMLS museum grant programs, 2011-2016, by museum discipline.

Continuing Commitment to Collections Care and Access

So what does all this tell us? I think it confirms that the changes we have implemented have worked well so far. IMLS continues to be committed to helping museums of every kind manage, care for, preserve, broaden access to, and expand the use of the collections that define the nation’s cultural and natural heritage.

Each of our four museum grant programs provides funding opportunities for collections care. Museums for America supports projects that strengthen the collections care capabilities of individual museums. National Leadership Grants for Museums support innovation in addressing field-wide collections care challenges through research, training programs, and/or coalitions resulting in tools or services that can be adapted by other institutions. Our two smaller programs—Museum Grants for African American History and Culture and Native American/Native Hawaiian Museum Services—fund collections care in these very specialized environments. And lastly, our grants at $5,000-$25,000 levels with no cost share appear to be an effective way to fund collections care projects at small and medium-size institutions as well as projects that are difficult to cost share, such as conservation treatments.

And now what?

We had just over 700 applications come in on December 1, and I for one can’t wait to see how the great ideas I’ve heard about (and those I haven’t) have been translated into doable projects that will benefit collections—and by extension communities—across the country. If you, as a collections care/conservation professional, would like to be part of all this, consider applying to be a peer reviewer this year. It’s a great way to see what others are up to, share what you know, and in so doing, provide a tremendous benefit to your peers and to IMLS. I would be happy to talk with you about what’s involved in the actual work and how we choose reviewers, but if you’re ready to commit, visit, complete the application, and attach a PDF version of your most recent resume.

I feel so very privileged to play a small part in the important work of caring for the nation’s collections, and I look forward to continuing to work with many of you over the coming months. Thank you for what you do every day, and thank you for the tremendous help and counsel that you provide to IMLS. Wishing you best of everything in 2017.

TREASURED LANDSCAPES: National Park Service Art Collections Tell America’s Stories launch

NPS Landscape Art
The National Park Service Museum Management Program is pleased announce the publication of TREASURED LANDSCAPES: National Park Service Art Collections Tell America’s Stories (book) and a companion virtual exhibit in celebration of the National Park Service Centennial, 1916–2016.  Artworks from over 50 national parks are featured in the book and the exhibit.
Landscape art played a major role in the establishment of the National Park Service and inspired national leaders to protect and preserve these special places for all Americans. Stunning paintings, watercolors, sketches, and works on paper from National Park Service museum collections are seen together for the first time. They capture America’s treasured landscapes from Yellowstone, Yosemite, Grand Canyon, and Death Valley, to works displayed in the homes of such eminent Americans as Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and Laurence Rockefeller. Other works mirror American experiences, from the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, to solitary Southwestern scenes, to wildlife in nature. These works of art convey a visual record of the Nation’s stories and reveal the remarkable diversity and engaging history of the National Park Service.
Book available through Eastern National eParks
National Park Service Virtual Exhibit

New Getty Course – Managing Collection Environments Initiative

Managing collection environments while providing long-term access to cultural materials requires a complex set of technical, analytical, and social skills. The preservation of collections has evolved into a discipline that takes into account the complexities and uncertainties present at all stages of environmental management. Recent and ongoing debate about appropriate climates has eroded the certainty of prescriptive approaches to reveal that no single field of study holds the solution and no one solution can be applied universally.
This innovative three-phase course brings together different disciplines, emerging knowledge, and the skills required to communicate and build consensus on the most appropriate approaches for climate control. It will provide up-to-date information that puts theory into practice and connects with participants’ working contexts by drawing on their experiences and by fostering continued learning through distance mentoring.

Detail of a chest of drawers from the J. Paul Getty Museum (83.DA.282)
Detail of a chest of drawers from the J. Paul Getty Museum (83.DA.282)

  • Phase 1 – Online Activities, Beginning March 2017 (ten weeks)
  • Phase 2 – Intensive Workshop, June 5–16, 2017 Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia
  • Phase 3 – Distance Mentoring, Beginning July 2017 (six months)

The course aims to disseminate recent research and thinking on technical aspects of environmental management while enhancing participants’ critical thinking and analysis of different kinds of information, and enhancing their decision making and influence within institutional frameworks.
The course seeks to provide participants with:

  • Updated and refreshed technical knowledge to analyze and communicate collection risks
  • Ability to discuss management of collection climates from the perspectives of architects, conservators, curators, facilities managers, scientists, and institutional administrators by blending the experience and knowledge of experts with participants’ own situations
  • Ability to set problems and solutions into institutional frameworks while exploring decision making that balances all issues and stakeholders and builds towards institutional consensus
  • Ability to develop holistic, sustainable solutions based on the needs and capacities of participants’ institutions
  • A network of professionals dedicated to sustainable preservation of historic materials

Benefits to participants

  • Case-based learning and in-practice mentoring that blends learning with participants’ own experience
  • Improved skills to communicate and justify ideas and to understand and respond collaboratively to other perspectives and needs
  • Insight into perspectives and activities of other disciplines connected to collection preservation
  • Enhanced ability to manage and facilitate change
  • Strengthened contacts within and beyond participants’ institutions

Benefits to participants’ institutions

  • Foster cooperation, communication, and understanding within the institution
  • Improved personal and professional competence of staff, to achieve institution’s mission and manage change
  • Demonstrated commitment to sustainable environmental practice
  • Strengthened internal and external networks
  • Prepared staff to undertake future roles at institution

The course will cover a range of topics including, but not limited to: climates and building envelopes, material response to climate, causes and concepts of damage, monitoring and data analysis, risk-based approaches, sustainable options for control and management practices, long-term strategies, program briefing, strategies for communication and leadership.
Learning Strategy
To support informative classroom discussion and embed learning in practice, the course begins online with tasks, readings, and discussion. All participants are required to complete a number of assignments during this first phase. Some assignments require information-gathering and consultation with other institutional colleagues. Participants should anticipate two to three hours of assigned work each week during this ten-week phase.
The second phase is an intensive two-week interdisciplinary workshop at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia. The third and final phase of the course is a six-month distance mentoring program individualized to each participant.
Participants are required to actively participate in all three phases of the course.
Vincent Beltran, Getty Conservation Institute
Foekje Boersma, Getty Conservation Institute
Walt Crimm, Walt Crimm Associates
Pamela Hatchfield, Boston Museum of Fine Arts
Michael C. Henry, Watson & Henry Associates
Wendy Jessup, Wendy Jessup Associates
Jeremy Linden, Image Permanence Institute
Michal Lukomski, Getty Conservation Institute
Bob Norris, Magic Hat Consulting
Patricia Silence, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation
Joel Taylor, Getty Conservation Institute
This course is open to eighteen mid- to senior-level professionals whose responsibilities include conservation management, collection management, or facility management for collections in cultural institutions, such as museums, libraries, and archives. Participants should be based at an institution or directly contribute to an institution’s mission through long-term consultancy or support. Participants may act as a focal point for an internal network in their institution or project, especially during the mentoring phase.
Participants should be able to understand and discuss technical and scientific literature dealing with the collection environments.
The working language of the course is English.
The total cost of the course is US$750, includes all three phases of the course: online activities, workshop and six-month mentoring period. The cost does not include travel to Philadelphia, accommodations, or meals.
To Apply
Application deadline is November 30, 2016.  For application instructions and forms please visit the course page on the Getty website 
Applicants will be notified of the status of their application by January 13, 2017. If you have questions about the course, the application process or require additional information, please contact

Updated NPS Museum Handbook Collections Environment Chapter Available

National Park Service Logo

The National Park Service Museum Management Program is pleased to announce that the updated NPS Museum Handbook Museum Collections Environment chapter is now available.
The chapter, developed for over 385 National Park museums located throughout the USA, provides guidance on how to achieve an optimal environment for different types of collections located in a broad range of climate zones and housed in various building types, including furnished historic structures.
It includes:

  • Sections on “Collections Environment Basics” and “Building Basics for Collections”
  • Easy-to-follow sequential steps with recommendations on how to manage and control the museum environment.
  • Recommended temperature and relative humidity set points. These set points are expanded slightly from the earlier NPS recommended ranges to accommodate the range of climate zones in which park collections are housed, and that can also allow for greater energy efficiency.
  • Updated light standards.

Checking Datalogger
Other recommendations include :

  • Moderating climate fluctuations by containerizing collections in well-constructed and sealed metal cabinets
  • Rotating objects on exhibit to minimize light exposure
  • Guidance on flash photography and copying
  • Guidance on minimizing air pollution in spaces housing collections