Here are my slides from the talk I gave yesterday at the Midwest Regional Conservation Guild’s 30th Anniversary Meeting at the Filson Historical Society. The Meeting focused on the history of conservation departments and associations at Midwestern museums, and included these talks, presented in order of the time in which the first conservator was hired at each one:
- 1927: Detroit Institute of Arts: presented by Barbara Heller
- 1936: Cincinnati Art Museum: presented by Cecile Mear
- 1938: Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art: presented by Chris Young
- 1952: Intermuseum Conservation Assocations: presented by Wendy Partridge
- 1956: Art Institute of Chicago: presented by Frank Zuccari
- 1958 Cleveland Museum of Art: presented by Shelly Paine
- 1964: St. Louis Art Museum: presented by Paul Haner
- 1968: Indianapolis Museum of Art: presented by Marty Radecki
- 1980: Midwest Regional Conservation Guild: presented by Richard McCoy
There are a lot of Midwestern museums missing from this list, including:
- Toledo Museum of Art
- Field Museum
- Dayton Art Insitute
- The Henry Ford
- Milwaukee Art Museum
- Minnieapols Institute of Arts
- Museums in Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Tennessee, Illinois, Iowa, etc.
But this is a good start. The talks given at the MRCG were recorded and I understand will be shared with other national and international organizations.
While my talk was scheduled to go for 20 minutes, I was asked to condense it to 7 minutes in an effort to conclude the meeting so that the Filson could close. While it was fun to try and give it that fast, I basically shelved my discussion of the future of professional organizations in the face of the Internet/information revolution. Perhaps I’ll have a chance to talk about that topic again some time in the future.
Finally, I want to point out that any and all conservation department could fairly easily writer their complete history in Wikipedia if they so chose and they have verifiable information to reference. In this way the information could be available immediately to an international audience (also, once in Wikipedia this information can easily be shared, downloaded and even bound in a book).
To this end, I added a lot to the Wikipedia article about the MRCG, and made a nearly comlete list of meeting locations for the Guild. As I mentioned yesterday, I also made a Google map that plots the locations of all of the meetings.
If I had been given a lot of time, and for some entertainment, I would have played the recent Johnny Cash video, They’re Aint No Grave, made by the Johnny Cash Project, as a way to demonstrate a tremendously effective online collaborative project.