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Subject: A death

A death

From: Michael Skalka <m-skalka<-at->
Date: Monday, March 5, 2012
Zora Sweet Pinney

It is with sadness that I inform all of you of the death of one of
the early very influential American Society of Testing
Materials(ASTM) member of the D01.57 Artists' Materials
subcommittee.  On Friday, March 2, 2012, Zora Sweet Pinney passed
away after a fairly sustained period of illness.

Zora was a driving force behind quality art materials.  From the
store that she and her husband Edward ran just off of Wilshire Blvd.
in Los Angeles to her work on the Artists' Materials subcommittee,
she was dedicated to making sure that artist understood the quality
and working properties of art materials they purchased.  Zora
participated in countless tests, both of the materials she sold in
her store and a variety of round robin tests as an ASTM consumer
participant.  Some of her test materials even found a second life as
research samples of naturally aged paints.  A publication by a
member of the National Gallery of Art's scientific research
department used Zora's extensive paintouts of Cadmium colors created
in the 1980s.

Zora was also an advocate for conservation. She worked tirelessly to
bring artists and conservators together to discuss common ground.
Zora firmly believed that if more artists were aware of the need to
use quality art materials and understood what painstaking efforts
conservators were required to perform to maintain works of art so
they could be exhibited, everyone would benefit.

Zora provided a remarkable collection of art materials to the
National Gallery of Art in 1993 to form the core of the Artist
Material Collection. That initial gift of over 6,000 items has grown
to 18,000 catalogued materials.  Many later gifts to the collection
were instigated by Zora as she continued to help to solicit art
materials from major manufacturers. She was an extraordinary
negotiator with manufacturers as she convinced them to donate
materials to the collection to save them for posterity so that
future artists and researchers would know what was produced in the
late 20th and early 21st centuries.

To many of us, Zora was also a friend.  She challenged us to move
forward. She scolded us when she thought we did not see the bigger
picture and she praised us lavishly for the little things that
marked accomplishment in our professional and personal lives.  She
will be missed by her ASTM, conservation and National Art Materials
Trade Association (NAMTA) friends. She has made a profound impact on
the art materials industry.  Her legacy will live on in the art
materials world and here at the National Gallery of Art where her
collection and the inspiration to organize it will serve current and
future generations of those who are interested in art materials.

Michael Skalka
Conservation Administrator
National Gallery of Art
Washington, DC

                  Conservation DistList Instance 25:41
                 Distributed: Wednesday, March 7, 2012
                       Message Id: cdl-25-41-001
Received on Monday, 5 March, 2012

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