Caring for the Collection
One of the Holburne’s main purposes is to preserve the things that have been entrusted to our care. Previous generations have created and left behind beautiful and fascinating objects in the hope that future generations will be able to enjoy and learn from them too. Our job as custodians of the Collection today is to care for it not only by repairing damage, but by doing our best to prevent deterioration in the future.
Over the years, damage can occur to even the most protected objects. Layers of dirt build up, and fragile items can deteriorate, especially in conditions that are too damp or dry. Accidental damage sometimes happens, especially when collections are stored or handled inappropriately. On these occasions, the Holburne will send objects to outside conservators for cleaning and repair. As a small museum, we rely on a network of independent experts to carry out the meticulous work and to advise us on caring for our collections.
Conservation work helps us to learn more about the Collection. By looking closely at the structure and material of things, we can discover how they were made. Cleaning can reveal details, colours and textures that have been hidden. Peeling back the layers often helps us to look at things with fresh eyes and understand more about who made them, and why.
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Maiolica dish before conservation
Dish after careful conservation by Fi Jordan