Throughout her second year at WUDPAC, Melissa has participated in 1-2 day seminars from varying specialties as they relate to preventive conservation.

Silver Lacquer

One day lecture and hands-on exercises in various polishing and coating techniques using Agateen (cellulose nitrate) with fluorescent dyes.

Taught by William Donnelly, 
Katelyn Rovito, and Tia Polidori

Electronic and Digital Media Preservation

A seminar to learn vocabulary, ethical considerations, resources, and specific strategies for time-based-media preservation

Taught by Helen Bailey (MIT)
(photo credit: Melissa Tedone)

Preservation Needs Assessment Survey (AV materials)

Two-day workshop to practice implementing a needs assessment survey for the Winterthur Museum archives while evaluating condition issues for audio-visual materials

Taught by Dr. Ellen Cunningham-Kruppa (Harry Ransom Center) and Dr. Melissa Tedone 
(photo credit: Melissa Tedone)

Asian Lacquer

A lecture discussing the history, manufacturing techniques, polymerization mechanisms, treatment, and preventive considerations for Asian lacquer objects

Taught by João Petisca

Unrolling Photographs

Hands-on workshop to experiment with various humidification, unrolling, and flattening/drying techniques for silver gelatin, albumen, and collodion photographs.

Taught by Barbara Lemmen

Identification and Care of Plastics

Presentation on current and past conservation approaches to the preservation of plastic materials, as well as specific condition concerns. The seminar also included various plastic identification tests.

Taught by Lara Kaplan

Forthcoming Seminars

  • Evaluating Environmental Data (Wendy Jessup)
  • Multispectral imaging
  • Microchemical spot testing
  • Sealed package microclimates for paintings
  • Packing, crating, and shipping
  • Pest identification
  • Conservation of Scrapbooks
  • Mountmaking
  • Pest Eradication (heat and anoxic methods)
  • Care and Maintenance of Operational Objects
  • Colorimetry/color-change monitoring
  • Silica gel for microclimates

Life Cycles Assessment Workshop


In June 2018, Melissa participated in a two day workshop at Pratt Institute on the use of Life Cycles Assessments in the field of art conservation. A life cycles assessment is a tool used to determine the global impact of choosing certain materials and processes. Life cycle assessments evaluate the full lifetime of a product from the extraction of raw materials to their final degradation, or as it is sometimes called, “cradle-to-grave.” By taking the full life cycle into account one can determine a good idea of the global impacts of the material beyond just the carbon footprint.

Participants in the 2018 LCA Workshop at Pratt Institute discussing the LCA beta tool for art conservation (photo credit: Sarah Nunberg)

The workshop was led by Dr. Matthew Eckelman (Assistant Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Northeastern University). Funding for the workshop was secured by the National Endowmnet for the Humanities and organized by Sarah Sutton and Sarah Nunberg. After spending many years on the AIC sustainability committee, Sarah Nunberg sought out a method to actually aid art conservators in the effort to make sustainable choices. The grant funded the formation of a beta tool that is simplified and easy to use by practicing art conservators.

To learn more about the projects check out the 2016 JAIC article (Nunberg, Eckelman, Hatchfield 2016).

Participants in the 2018 NEH-funded LCA workshop at Pratt Institute
(photo credit: Sarah Nunberg)