The Foundation of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works, in collaboration with the Morgan Library & Museum, presents a “Master Studies” Workshop:

Media Consolidation for Ancient and Medieval Manuscripts on Parchment

Materials, methods and conservation of ancient & medieval manuscripts: approaches to consolidation of flaking and friable media on parchment

September 15 - 19, 2014
New York City, NY
Thaw Conservation Center, The Morgan Library & Museum
Instructors:  Abigail Quandt, Andrea Pataki, and Nancy Turner

Registration Fee
$785 AIC members; $985 non-members
Limit 12 participants.
FAIC's workshop and conference registration policies can be found here.
This workshop is designed for practicing conservators.  Participants will be selected based on experience, demonstrated need/relevance, geographic reach, and opportunity to disseminate information gained. The number of participants from a single institution may be limited.  Preference will be given to AIC Professional Associate and Fellow members. Applications are due April 30, 2014, with notifications expected by June 10. Later applications will be considered, if space is available.

To apply for a space in the workshop, please fill out the WORKSHOP APPLICATION FORM, and mail the form along with a copy of your resume or CV and statement of interest addressing the acceptance criteria to

Financial assistance is available through grant funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Scholarship applications must be received by FAIC by May 15, 2014.  Prospective applicants should apply for workshop admission by April 30.  Acceptance and scholarship decisions are made independently, and applying for funding will not reduce your chances of being accepted into the workshop.
  • FAIC/NEH Individual Professional Development Scholarship
    With financial support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, FAIC offers scholarships up to $1,000 to help defray registration and travel expenses for participants in the FAIC workshops supported by NEH. All current AIC members who are U.S. residents or citizens are eligible.  Deadlines for receipt of applications are February 15, May 15 and September 15.
This workshop is intended for mid-career conservators who would like to gain a greater understanding of the materials and methods used to create illuminated manuscripts on parchment, and greater confidence in choosing and using consolidation techniques for flaking and friable media on parchment supports.  

Lectures and hands-on practical sessions will cover a broad range of adhesives and delivery systems, and will offer participants the opportunity to “test drive” numerous aerosol mist generators as well as brush application methods with a variety of consolidants.  Proper choice of both adhesive and application method for treatment of particular condition problems will be addressed, and case studies will be presented to illustrate the decision-making process.  Historical methods of parchment-making (including animal species and surface preparation, and their ramifications for media adhesion) will be described, along with artist’s pigments, binders and working methods.  Deterioration mechanisms and treatment challenges associated with various pigments and artists’ techniques will also be addressed.  Examples from the Medieval and Renaissance Manuscript Collection at the Morgan Library & Museum will be selected for first-hand observation of the materials, techniques and condition problems described in the lectures.  

Participants will receive either an introduction to or refresher on traditional materials and methods used in ancient and medieval manuscripts on parchment, across a range of regions and periods in history; they will be able to recognize characteristics of various skins and types of skin preparation, and their ramifications for media stability; they will also gain a better understanding of the variety of media employed by the medieval artist, and how these media deteriorate.  Conservators with prior experience consolidating these media will be introduced to new developments in aerosol technology, and those with little experience will be exposed to a wide range of consolidation options and techniques.  All participants should emerge with broader knowledge of current treatment options, and greater confidence in applying these options appropriately.

General Outline of Course (preliminary, and subject to change):
Day 1:  Historical materials and methods, parchment, pigments, binders and inks; characteristic deterioration mechanisms; history of media consolidation; followed by examination of examples from the Morgan collection (Abigail Quandt); Lecture & viewing of collections

Days 2-3:  Aerosols and mists (Andrea Pataki); Lecture & hands-on

Day 4:  Adhesives (Andrea Pataki); Brush consolidation (Nancy Turner); Lecture & hands-on

Day 5:  Case histories, treatment decision-making; treatment documentation; continued hands-on practical work; Wrap-up discussion with participants.

  • Andrea Pataki-Hundt is instructor in the Book and Paper Conservation Program since 1998 at the State Academy of Art and Design, Stuttgart. Her PhD research was on the use of aerosols and adhesives for applying consolidants to friable media. 
  • Abigail Quandt is a graduate of the Winterthur/University of Delaware Art Conservation Program. Since 2001 she has been Head of the Department of Book and Paper Conservation at the Walters Art Museum. She specializes in the conservation of illuminated manuscripts on parchment. 
  • Nancy Turner is Conservator of Manuscripts in the Department of Paper Conservation at the J. Paul Getty Museum. Apprentice trained, she has been responsible for the conservation of the collection of illuminated manuscripts at the Getty since 1984. She has also published on the technical study of illuminations, most recently on the St. Albans Psalter.

The Morgan Library & Museum, New York. MS M.240, fol.7v. 
(Moralized Bible, Paris, France, between 1227-1234) 
Photography by Graham S. Haber, 2013.

Travel Information:
Directions and other travel information, including recommended hotels, will be sent to all participants prior to the workshop.

This program is supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Additional funding comes from the Foundation of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artist Works Endowment for Professional Development, which was created by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and donations from members of the American Institute for Conservation and its friends. Courses are made possible with the assistance of many AIC members, but no AIC membership dues were used to create or present this course.

Without this support, the registration fees would be approximately $1,500.

Contact: Abigail Choudhury
FAIC Development and Education Coordinator
1556 15th Streeet, NW, Suite 320
Washington, DC 20005

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