Anyone caring for paper-based cultural collections realizes that many of them become fragile and break down over time. This session will explore the materials and structures that make up paper-based collections, as well as the various factors, both internal and external, that contribute to deterioration.
Conservation professionals spend many years studying the properties of collections materials and perfecting their examination and treatment skills. While you will not leave this session with a conservator's expertise, a general familiarity with the mechanisms of deterioration will be a valuable tool for evaluating the overall condition of your collections and focusing your preservation activities.
This session will help you:
In most cases the materials found in cultural collections are composite structures. To understand the process of deterioration, it is important to be able to identify each component of a particular format. Take a moment to look at the following pictures and name the component materials found in each item. How do you think some of these components might contribute to deterioration?
: What materials make up each item?