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Subject: Citing treatment reports and unpublished documents

Citing treatment reports and unpublished documents

From: Steven Pine <spine>
Date: Thursday, July 31, 2003
It is unclear to me if there are any standards that might be applied
to the inclusion of unpublished observations, discoveries, and other
understandings of works of art and artifacts that conservators
routinely generate in treatment reports.  I have heard other
conservators express frustration that their contributions have been
absorbed without recognition and appear in print without
attribution.  In most museum catalogs and many survey style books
some will, at best, see their work appear obliquely under an entry
termed "Technical Observations".  Other times the observations will
simply be absorbed by the author and stated without separation
between what the author contributed and what came from "The Lab".

Now that I am collaborating with several labs on a project and
compiling data that others have generated (but not all has been
published) I want to be sure to give proper credit to everyone
involved.  In order to do so I am in the process of reviewing
standards set in allied fields and find enough variety to be
concerned when it comes to addressing the material we generate.  Are
there others that have covered this ground and addressed the gray
areas to their satisfaction?

Have others found their work printed without attribution although it
might be a pivotal point in an interpretation of a piece? The field
of art conservation is searching for recognition for the special
contributions we provide.  Is this an area that has been
under-utilized or am I expecting too much?

Steven Pine
Conservator
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
PO Box 6826
Houston TX  77265


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Received on Thursday, 31 July, 2003

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