A new Network of Excellence has been established to bring scientists and engineers together with conservators and curators.
The artworks and artefacts that we inherit from the past have a powerful impact on our society today. The conservation of this cultural heritage is of immense importance, so they can be viewed by future generations. However, such objects can age and ware over time through environmental conditions, or simply poor attempts at restoration.
You may be aware of previous examples of poor restoration. A notable recent example is of a copy of the Immaculate Conception painting by Murillo, which was reportedly cleaned by furniture restorer. The two attempts to restore the original left the face of the Virgin Mary unrecognisable.
Where art and cultural heritage meets science
We hope that this collaborative work will foster new relations between art, culture and science. Ambrose Taylor Network lead
A newly formed Network of Excellence at Imperial seeks to bring scientists and engineers who can identify mechanisms that drive the degradation of historic objects, or how those objects might respond to treatment, together with conservators. The hope is that this will lead to more informed choices about suitable treatments. The Network - Science and Engineering Research for Cultural Heritage - will be lead by Ambrose Taylor and Professor Sergei Kazarian
Partners of the project include the British Museum, the Royal College of Music, the Natural History Museum, the Tate, the V&A and the Mary Rose Trust.
The first event for the new Network is a panel discussion on "Where Art and Cultural Heritage Meets Science". The discussion will involve leading figures from the area of conservation research, including Sarah Healey-Dilkes, Senior Sculpture Conservator at the V&A Museum and Professors Mary Ryan and Pier Luigi Dragotti from Imperial College London.
Anne Barrett, Imperial’s Archivist and Corporate Records Manager, and author of the book “Women at Imperial College Past, Present and Future” will be speaking alongside Geraldine Cox, Artist in Residence in Physics. The discussion will be chaired by Professor Sian Harding.
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