April 17, 2020
Foundation for Advancement in Conservation
The Foundation for Advancement in Conservation (FAIC) has been awarded a three-year cooperative agreement totaling $500,000 from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to evaluate current national infrastructure in conservation and make recommendations to strengthen preservation of cultural heritage for present and future generations. The Held in Trust project will assess the current state of, and challenges facing, the preservation of the cultural heritage of our nation as it approaches its 250th anniversary in 2026. The Image Permanence Institute is pleased to be a participant and member of the Advisory Council for the project.
Held in Trust is part of a major NEH initiative, A More Perfect Union: NEH Special Initiative Advancing Civic Education and Commemorating the Nation’s 250th Anniversary. “Our nation’s cultural heritage collections—the records and writings that document both the momentous acts and private thoughts of the past; the artifacts, artwork, and ephemera left to us from previous eras—are foundational to our understanding of our shared American history,” said NEH Chairman Jon Parrish Peede. “The FAIC Held in Trust project will create a roadmap to equip conservation professionals with the skills and resources they need to safeguard these national treasures so that they remain available for future generations to study, appreciate, and admire. NEH is pleased to support FAIC in this urgently important undertaking.”
Guided by a steering committee and an advisory council and in collaboration with NEH staff, the project will comprise three years of research, discussion, and dissemination activities. “We are thrilled to partner with NEH to highlight the crucial role conservation plays in preserving America’s primary source materials that are integral for humanities scholarship and dissemination,” said FAIC Executive Director Eryl Wentworth, “as well to have the opportunity to address societal and environmental challenges currently facing our nation that directly impact the conservation profession and collections care.”
A core activity will be a national convening to take place in Washington, DC, in 2021, followed by a one-day program to be held at AIC’s 50th anniversary meeting in Los Angeles in 2022. These sessions will summarize progress made to date on identified action items and focus on project outcomes, long-term impacts, and next steps. The Held in Trust final report will serve as a roadmap for the field and will guide and shape future activities.
The Image Permanence Institute, part of RIT’s College of Art and Design, is a recognized world leader in the development and deployment of sustainable practices for the preservation of cultural heritage collections. The institute accomplishes this through a balanced program of research, education, products and services that meet the needs of individuals, companies and institutions.
The Foundation for Advancement in Conservation’s (FAIC) mission is to save cultural heritage for future generations, protecting it from decay and destruction. We advance research and education, lead treatment and collection care initiatives, and deploy conservation expertise to where it is most urgently needed. Our work empowers conservation professionals, strengthens cultural institutions, and engages stakeholders, including public audiences, as we work together to protect cultural heritage for humanity. For more information, visit www.culturalheritage.org.
In an effort to understand how changes in mechanical system operations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic impacted collections environments across institutions, IPI launched a field study through an online submission platform from October through November 2020.
IPI is thrilled to announce that Dr. Emma Richardson will start her role as Director of Research in July 2021. Emma is the first to hold this new leadership position, responsible for guiding IPI’s research agenda. Emma brings extensive research and leadership experience in the applied sciences, and an impressive professional record in higher education with a focus on cultural heritage.
IPI is looking to partner with three collecting institutions in North America as part of a three-year research project, Integrating Risk Assessment for Pollutants into Energy-saving Strategies, funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). The project involves two years of field research focused on monitoring room-level pollutant concentrations while implementing energy-saving strategies for mechanical system operation.
IPI distributed an online questionnaire in November 2020 to inform a current inventory of commonly used materials and designs for sealed frame packages. We are grateful to the more than 100 colleagues, working in a variety of collecting institution types around the world, who responded to our sealed frame package questionnaire.