Elena Bulat: At Weissman Center, Harvard University with 9 million images.
Rubber cement adhesive – in preparation for an exhibit of advertising photography. Collection is 260 photographs many mounted with rubber cement adhesive with back and window mats. Silver gelatin and chromogenic color. On gelatin emulsion removed with 100% ethanol and cotton pad. Not removed from the verso. Removed smoothly and easily. Don’t use q-tips just use cotton pad wrapped around finger.
Use Klucel G poulitice (10%) like an MC poultice – in this case to remove PVA. Here black paper was adhered to the reverse of carte-de-visites. Mechanical removal followed by poultice of Klucel G. Free solvent resulted in staining. May not work for all PVAs.
Burnished scratch reduction on silver gelatin prints – in this case slightly moist cotton swabs that are “patted” on and off. Step-by-step offered renewal for the scratched area.
Kallitype identification with XRF. Many institutions have portable XRF. This image was in the lab for silver mirror reduction but emulsion layer was not visible under magnification which was surprising. XRF was used. Hard to identify Kallitype from platinum or matte silver gelatin print. Comparison made using known sample. And comparative study of the album of photographs from the same time period. Similarities present in known Kallitype and analyzed sample. Presence of silver mirroring is of interest here owing to the absence of a gelatin layer. Is this possible? Doug Nishimura consulted and noted that this may be possible if the photograph is coated. Determined to leave mirroring intact.
Brenda Bernier, Weissman Center, Harvard University
Brenda notes that in the library discussion group there was an excellent presentation. Synthetic leather for book repair from NYPL. They have been trying to get a synthetic that mimics leather for book repair. They made a silicone mold of leather and used acrylic gel and paints to fill in the mold. The results looked good and the materials can be shaped. Check out the Book and Paper Annual or contact NYPL.
Sara Shpargal notes her experience with replication of missing cover that worked very well. See Sara if you want more info on case treatment as well.
Nora Kennedy, Sherman Fairchild Conservator of PhotographsMetropolitan Museum of Art
Photographic Information Record launched last year – an artist’s questionnaire. Involved conservators, curators, and collection managers. This can be downloaded from the AIC website under resources. But how do we get photographers to fill this out? Nora and others are pushing this everywhere. Writable PDF so it has been working well at the Metropolitan. Ideally something that photographers fill out automatically. New translations as well in the works.