During June 2018, aspiring conservators from around the country attended a 2-week intensive preventative conservation workshop at Staatsburgh. This was the third year that the workshop was held at Staatsburgh with sponsorship from The Foundation for the American Institute for Conservation along with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities. The workshop taught in-depth methods of caring for many different types of collections. Participants gained insight into artifact conservation and the conditions that cause deterioration. After the workshop, several of the participants wrote blog entries about their experience and a specific aspect of the workshop.
Independent Conservator Cathy MacKenzie organized this workshop to occur at Staatsburgh collaborating on its organization with NYS Bureau of Historic Sites Furniture Conservator, David Bayne. Several conservators participated in the workshop's instruction including Kirsten Schoonmaker from Syracuse University, Valentine Talland formerly of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, and Michelle Cornelison Smith, the Assistant Paper & Book Conservator at SF Art Conservation in Oakland, CA.
Part I in the series was written by one of this year's student participants, Meredith French. Meredith has a BA in Studio Arts from Bard College and has spent nearly a decade working in screen printing and textile conservation in California. She currently works in the San Francisco area at Chrysalis Art Conservation, a private conservation firm, where she focuses on textile conservation.