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Friday, May 31 • 8:45am - 10:00am
(Textiles) Ferrous Attraction: The Science Behind the Magic

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How to fasten or secure an artifact has long been a focus of art conservators in all specialties. We have stitched, glued and adhered items for decades. And with each method, the attempt was always to keep the conservation as reversible as possible. The somewhat recent development of strong, permanent, rare earth magnets has enabled them to be used as a reversible fastener. Neodymium rare earth magnets are far stronger than earlier permanent magnets and have only truly entered the market since 1990. They have great potential as a new tool for conservators. Could there really be a truly reversible tool that would not harm or create holes that we could use? Before these new magnets can be part of our future, a fuller understanding of how they work is needed. Moreover, a system needs to be developed to determine precisely which attributes a magnet should have for a specific project. What makes a magnet “permanent”, when were they developed, and how magnets differ from one another (i.e. the various types and their unique materials and properties) will be demonstrated.

The use of magnets in the past has caused damage, slowing their use among some. However, with a full understanding of how a system is created and can be adapted, damage can be prevented. A “jig” with various combinations of magnets and metal components will be used by participants to demonstrate the actual system and its parts, different methods of implementation, and the strength of commonly available magnets. This ‘hands on” experience can serve to stimulate conservators to better adapt a system to any specific artifact.

The material will be presented as a hands-on instructional format. Handouts will be provided.

Limited spaces available, ticket required; free to all TSG members. Tickets will become available once ticketed event registration begins.

avatar for Gwen Spicer

Gwen Spicer

Conservator, Spicer Art Conservation, LLC
Gwen Spicer is a textile, upholstery and objects conservator in private practice. She earned her MA in Art Conservation from Buffalo State College, and has since taught and lectured around the world. In her twenty years in private practice, she assists many individuals and organizations of all sizes with storage, collection care, and exhibitions, and has become known for her innovative conservation treatments. Her current research and... Read More →

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SMALLCORP manufactures products for the display, conservation and storage of works of art, textiles and objects. Our frames and display cases figure prominently in museum and corporate collections. SmallCorp customers include picture framers, galleries, art conservators and related institutions and professionals.

Friday May 31, 2013 8:45am - 10:00am
JW Marriott White River Ballroom C-D 10 S West St Indianapolis, IN 46204