objects

Interview with the Conservation Interns

Internships are a crucial part of the education and training of conservators. Currently we have three graduate interns in conservation from three different countries, allowing us a unique opportunity to discuss conservation training from an international perspective.

Erin Stephenson and Stephanie Ricordeau are interns in the Paintings Conservation Department. Erin is completing her Master of Arts and Certificate of Advanced Study in Conservation through SUNY Buffalo State College while Stephanie is in the Master’s Program for Conservation-Restoration at La Sorbonne, Paris, France.

In the Objects Conservation Department, Tegan Broderick is an intern completing her Master of Cultural Materials Conservation at the University of Melbourne, Australia.

The interns recently shared some interesting insights into their experiences in conservation.  Here are excerpts from our conversations followed by the full text of their interviews.

 FAMSF Conservation Graduate Interns 2011 

FAMSF Conservation Interns Erin Stephenson, Tegan Broderick, and Stephanie Ricordeau

Olmec: An Exercise in Scale

Olmec: Colossal Masterworks of Ancient Mexico is the perfect exhibition to show the range of artworks an objects conservator can work on. The pyramid from Complex C at the Olmec site of La Venta is first object represented in this exhibition that I helped conserve.  At the beginning of the exhibition you will see a large color photograph of this pyramid showing the result of the conservation treatment.


Man Observing: Installation of an 8.8′ tall sculpture

Viola Frey’s monumental sculpture, Man Observing Series II, is back from its travels!  This is a larger than life sized sculpture made of 13 heavy sections of glazed earthenware ceramics.  Teamwork by staff at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco returned the sculpture to its original home in the Saxe Gallery at the de Young.

A Day at the FAMSF Photo Studio

Amazing art comes through the photo studio on a regular basis.
 
We tend to save Mondays (when we’re closed to the public) to photograph artworks that are normally installed in the galleries. This way we can take the objects out of the galleries and into the photo studio without impacting the public.
 
Recently we shot two recent acquisitions from the AOA department. The images will appear in the next edition of the museums' Fine Arts magazine.
 

Bouquets to Art: Annual invasion of the flowers

The Fine Arts Museums’ annual floral extravaganza, Bouquets to Art, takes place in March every year. It’s FAMSF’s biggest fundraiser of the year, and it’s extremely popular with museumgoers. It can be especially challenging to the FAMSF conservation staff, however, given the potential to admit insects and pests to the museum. This photo essay chronicles the conservation staff (a.k.a. The Conservation Patrol) at Bouquets to Art 2009.

Bouquet in front of Stela with Queen Ix Mutal Ahaw

Bouquet in front of Stela with Queen Ix Mutal Ahaw.

 

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