In the conservation lab

I became the museum’s assistant conservator just a few months before the new conservation lab opened. We have certainly made good use of the extra space! The lab is full with all kinds of glass objects in need of some TLC and that’s what I’m here for.

Sometimes the objects I treat are ones that have shattered into many small pieces and sometimes there are just one or two broken or missing pieces.  A lot of the treatments are re-treatments of old repairs that have failed.

Usually I work on at least 2 or 3 objects at a time because the adhesives and resins we use can take days to completely set. Here are pictures of some of projects I recently finished or am currently working on. Check back for updates as these projects progress!

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Astrid van Giffen is the Museum's associate conservator. In 2007, she completed the conservation training program of the Netherlands Institute for Cultural Heritage (ICN) in Amsterdam, with a specialization in glass and ceramics. Her training included internships at the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Md, and The Corning Museum of Glass in Corning. Since completing the ICN program, she has worked as a private conservator in Oregon and was the Samuel H. Kress Fellow in Objects Conservation at the Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies of the Harvard Art Museum (2008-2009). She also holds a BA (2001) in Classical Studies from Willamette University.

4 comments » Write a comment

  1. wat een prachtig nieuw lab en wat een leuk idee om zo iets van je werk te laten zien. Keep up the good work !!!

  2. A collector friend has an 18th C English epergne which is in need of conservation/repair to one of its branches. Is all your work in-house or do you provide services outside the Museum? If not, might you have any references? We live in NH and would have to hand deliver the object. Many thanks. Keep up the great work.

    • Unfortunately, we do not offer conservation services outside of the Museum. However, the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (AIC) has a search tool to help people find conservators who may be able to help. Enter your postal code and select “objects” as the specialty. “Refine Result” will take you to the advanced search option which allows you to specify the material (glass) of your object. Here is the link. Best of luck!

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