This paper considers using the concept of negotiative conservation in developing a framework for working practice. It has long been noted that many of the traditional theories of conservation such as universality and objectivity are at the very least impractical if not impossible notions to achieve, particularly within the context of commercial conservation practice. Conservation theorists are currently re-evaluating the need for a more value and function oriented approach to conservation. Rather than defining conservation treatment on scientific Truths as dictated by the object, current models re-address the relationship between object and its ‘users’ in favour of the latter. It aims for a co-operative approach to treatment decision-making which extends beyond the field of current experts. Using several recent treatments carried out at the Centre for Cultural Materials Conservation (CCMC)’s Fee-For-Service paintings conservation lab we will review the benefits and limits of a negotiative approach to the specific area of commercial painting conservation.

Insights & Intuition: 10th Paintings SIG Symposium 2006
Paper author:
Evans, Jocelyn; Lelyveld, MaryJo