Ancient and Historic Metals: Conservation and Scientific Research

Proceedings of a Symposium on Ancient and Historic Metals organized by the J. Paul Getty Museum and the Getty Conservation Institute, November 1991

Edited by David A. Scott, Jerry Podany, and Brian B. Considine

The sixteen essays in this volume reflect a wide range of research concerning methods for metals conservation, particularly in respect to ancient and historic objects. The variety of issues discussed includes considerations in the cleaning of ancient bronze vessels; the processes involved in bronze casting, finishing, patination, and corrosion; studies of manufacturing techniques of gold objects in ancient African and medieval European metalworking; techniques of mercury gilding in the 18th century; an investigation of patina in the classification of bronze surfaces from land and lake environments; an examination of bronze objects from the Benin Kingdom, Nigeria; the history of restoration of the Marcus Aurelius monument in Rome; the corrosion of iron in architecture; and applications of radiographic tomography to the study of metal objects.

304 pages, 8 1/2 x 11 3/4 inches
83 color plates, 77 black & white illustrations
ISBN 0-89236-231-6, paperback, $50.00

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Accelerated Aging: Photochemical and Thermal Aspects
by Robert L. Feller

The most recent volume in the Getty Conservation Institute's Research in Conservation series, Accelerated Aging: Photochemical and Thermal Aspects by Robert L. Feller, represents the culmination of more than 40 years of research by this noted scientist. The book focuses on the long-term performance of materials such as wool, dyes, and organic compounds; their resistance to change when exposed to environmental factors such as oxygen, ozone, moisture, heat, and light; and their physical durability with handling and use over time. Processes of deterioration are discussed based on speeded-up laboratory studies designed to clarify the chemical reactions involved and their physical consequences.

The Research in Conservation series publishes results of scientific research conducted by the Getty Conservation Institute and its individual and institutional partners, as well as state-of-the-art reviews of conservation literature. Other volumes in the series include: Evaluation of Cellulose Ethers for Conservation (1990), Protection of Art from Atmospheric Ozone (1990), Epoxy Resins in Stone Conservation (1992), and Airborne Particles in Museums (1993).

Dr. Feller is former director of the Center for Materials of the Artist and Conservator and is currently director emeritus of the Carnegie-Mellon Research Institute in Pittsburgh.

304 pages, 8 1/2 x 11 inches
65 charts
ISBN 0-89236-125-5, paperback, $30.00

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Matte Paint: Its History and Technology, Analysis, Properties, and Conservation Treatment, with Special Emphasis on Ethnographic Objects

A special bibliographic supplement to Art and Archaeology Technical Abstracts, volume 30, 1993.

by Eric F. Hansen, Sue Walston and Mitchell Hearns Bishop

The 1,125 abstracts in this AATA supplement are introduced by a 62-page topical review that provides a guide to the range of literature it contains. The review highlights references of special interest, particularly with respect to the first three chapters, "History and Technology," "Analysis," and "Properties." The supplement includes considerable material from anthropology, ethnobiology, and coatings science, fields whose literature has not previously been commonly used by conservators. While the bibliography emphasizes ethnographic objects because of the frequency with which their paint problems are reported in the literature, similar problems are also found with matte paints used in architecture, contemporary art, folk art, and many other forms of applied art. The last chapter on "Treatment" provides a general framework through which to pursue appropriate responses to the wide variety of paint problems and treatment options.

The editors are Eric Hansen, an Associate Scientist at the GCI; Sue Walston, the former Head of Materials Conservation at the Australian Museum, Sydney; and Mitchell Hearns Bishop, a Research Coordinator in the GCI's Documentation Program.

600 pages
ISBN 0-89236-262-6, paperback
$45.00 for individuals, $65.00 for institutions


Picture L.A.: Landmarks of a New Generation

Conservation image

The catalogue to an exhibition held at Los Angeles City Hall at the end of 1994, this powerful and evocative book captures Los Angeles as seen through the eyes of the eight young people, ages 10 to 18, who were asked by the Getty Conservation Institute to photograph what they considered landmarks of their own human and physical environments, as well as public landmarks. For three months beginning in the fall of 1993, they covered an area from South Central to Beverly Hills, Hollywood to Venice, and East L.A. to Malibu. The result is a diverse and remarkable collection of images and words that expands our conventional notions of landmarks and provokes a sense of wonder and introspection. More than a book of photographs, it is a book of ideas that challenges us to reflect on how we are marked by, and interpret, the environment we live in.

Accompanying essays by Miguel Angel Corzo, Director of the Getty Conservation Institute, Lauren Greenfield, Picture L.A.'s Director of Photography, and Warren Olney, host of radio station KCRW's "Which Way, L.A.?", provide illuminating perspectives on the Picture L.A. project.

The catalogue was among the books recently honored by the Association of American University Presses for meritorious achievement in design and production.

120 pages, 10 3/4 x 8 1/2 inches
9 color plates, 75 black & white photographs
ISBN 0-89236-305-3, paperback, $19.95