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Re: [BKARTS] AIC Stuff

I believe that AIC is looking at an outside certification service, as
well as doing it in-house.  There are such services.  It's one of the
things "on the table".

I can easily say that I HAVE felt professionally slighted from time to
time by AIC.  I just don't let it get to me, because the organization
offers things I want.


On Tuesday, September 16, 2003, at 10:57 AM, Bruce Levy wrote:

I'm not sure who you are referring to.  Personally, I have nevere been
slighted by the AIC.  My observations and criticisms are based on my
experience with the AIC, and having kept up with the latest
information (they post many of their decisions and ideas for anyone
interested- a very good thing)one can see that not much has changed
since I left.  When I left I was a professional associate in good
standing ( as they say).
     One doesn't have to feel slighted to see the folly of the AIC
being the organ of certification.  Nor should the open conversation

----- Original Message -----
From: Carol Pratt <jcpratt@xxxxxxx>
Date:         Tue, 16 Sep 2003 10:06:30 -0700
To: BOOK_ARTS-L@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject:      Re: [BKARTS] AIC Stuff

Except for a few posts (mostly from Peter and one or two others), I
think this discussion has not really addressed salient issues.  Is it
gripe session about the AIC? or a discussion about certification?

The AIC isn't just a big happy group of book people.  It includes all
kinds of practitioners in conservation and restoration
work...architecture, photography, objects (sculpture, furniture,
etc.), painting, prints, textiles, video, digital, even including
scientists.  There is a big emphasis on the science of conservation
that has so far been ignored in this forum.

Being a conservator means more than just "fixing" or restoring...it
also means knowing when NOT to fix, when to stabilize instead, or when
to do nothing.  And what to do, when cutting isn't the best option.

Yes, AIC has an affinity for the program-trained, and you can let it
a big major personal problem...Or not.  I have friends in both camps,
and there are strengths and weaknesses in BOTH camps .  The
certification issue is ipso facto happening, regardless of what AIC
does.  It's a fact in the UK, it's happening in Italy, and it's
happening other places as well.  It's happening here, too, guys,
because this country has also a love affair for "credentials", i.e.
degree, the certificate, the license.  Either some organization (like
AIC) codifies it, or it will happen because the job market does it

A bigger issue for me is whether the field is actually ready for
certification.  There are problems with education and training (there
isn't a whole lot available, and some training opportunities are
disappearing).  A written and codified body of literature doesn't in
general exist (yet, but it's being worked on).  And there isn't even a
whole lot of agreement on what conservation does or ought to do,
although AIC has labored for years on this problem, having produced a
code of ethics, guidelines, "practical commentaries".  Yes, all
produced by AIC activists, but who else is going to do it?  Do we need
these?  I think we do.

I am an AIC member and have been for nearly 15 years.  I am
and self-trained.  It is difficult to keep current  with new
information and to update and improve skills.  Like the rest of you I
happen to think that I do pretty good work, too, and I use AIC as a
resource to help me continue to get better at what I do.

It doesn't seem to me that most of this discussion has moved along
much from personal biases and memories of early slights.

Carol Pratt
Eugene, OR

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