Book and Paper

Paper Conservator, Analiese Treacy-Ruane at the Art Gallery of NSW

The Book and Paper Special Interest Group represents conservators who care for paper-based cultural materials including books, artworks on paper (such as prints, drawings and watercolours), archives, manuscripts, maps and plans, and parchment. Book and paper conservators have traditionally also been required to be familiar with a broad range of associated materials including photographs, film, sound and new media, although increasingly they are becoming the subject of separate study and treatment as conservators choose to specialise in these areas.

The conservation of paper-based materials involves research and analysis to establish the history, chemistry and technology of each artefact and its deterioration mechanisms. Conservators must be able to advise on, and carry out, activities such as applying suitable environmental controls and storage methods, the treatment of individual artefacts to repair and stabilise, consideration of the artefact’s future use, approaches to framing, and digitisation.

The current SIG convenors are Alice Cannon, based at Museums Victoria, and Albertine Hamilton, from the State Library of Victoria. 

Our activities

The Book & Paper SIG holds a symposium in conjuction with Photon every two years, plus additional workshops from time to time. Plans are underway for the 10th Book, Paper and Photographic Materials Symposium, to be held in 2018 in Melbourne - details TBA!

The 2016 symposium "Light, Colour, Structure" was held in October 2016 at the National Gallery in Canberra (read a review!) and the 2014 symposium at the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney.

Need more information? Email Convenor