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The Artifact, Its Context and Their Narrative Multidisciplinary conservation in Historic House Museums

Friday 03 August 2012 (Categories: ICOM, Sculpture, Polychromy and Architectural Decorations, Textiles, Wood, Furniture and Lacquer)

The Artifact, Its Context and Their Narrative Multidisciplinary conservation in Historic House Museums. A Joint Conference of ICOM-DEMHIST and three ICOM-CC Working Groups, to be held at the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles, November 6-9, 2012

Conference Details

ICOM-DEMHIST, the international committee for historic house museums, and three ICOM-CC working groups Sculpture, Polychromy, and Architectural Decoration, Textiles, and Wood, Furniture, and Lacquer are collaborating in the organization of a conference to be held in November 2012. This four day conference will be hosted by The Getty Research and Conservation institutes in Los Angeles.

Past conferences organized individually by ICOM-DEMHIST and ICOM-CC working groups have already focused on conservation of collections, structures and settings and the importance of a multidisciplinary approach. In this new collaboration we aim to promote the concept of multidisciplinary conservation within the specific context of historic house museums.

The theme of the symposium will focus on managing the inevitable deterioration of structure and materials in historic house museums, while balancing the need for public access with current standards of practice in conservation. Historic houses remain in constant use throughout their lifespan and their interiors consist of diverse materials often altering dramatically due to change imposed by society, their environment and function. The proper care for historic interiors and their edifices draws from many conservation specializations as well as from many other fields. Therefore it is essential to approach each project in a holistic manner using a multidisciplinary collaborative approach involving all stakeholders.

Papers selected for the upcoming symposium will focus on the following key issues: The Historic House Museum as an artifact: This theme relates to all issues encountered when the house itself is a significant historic artifact and how to balance public access with current standards of practice in conservation. The artifact within its context: This topic concerns the historic house museum as a vessel in which a collection is presented. Focus will be given on balancing the individual conservation needs of solitary objects within the context of an integrated collection and its setting. Conservation and the “narrative” of the Historic House: This theme will delve into how conservation and its discoveries can play a role in engaging and educating the public, both in the narrative presented on public tours and by demonstration of conservation techniques.

Proceedings of the symposium will be made available to delegates and members of ICOM-CC & ICOM-DEMHIST. Programme:

Presentations and visits will be held over four days and delegates will be given the opportunity to continue the theme of the discussions during the excursions. The programme will be available online via the conference website.

The language of the symposium and proceedings will be English. The venue:

The Getty Research and Conservation Institutes are located at the Getty Center in Los Angeles California (USA) and are world renowned institutes dedicated to furthering the knowledge and understanding of visual arts on a theoretical and technical level.

Please register via the conference website.


Conference website

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