JAIC 1994, Volume 33, Number 1, Article 7 (pp. 77 to 86)
JAIC online
Journal of the American Institute for Conservation
JAIC 1994, Volume 33, Number 1, Article 7 (pp. 77 to 86)

BOOK REVIEWS

Meg Loew Craft, Catherine Sease, & Clifford Craine



BOOK REVIEWS

BARBARAAPPELBAUMGUIDE TO ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION OF COLLECTIONSMadison, Conn.: Sound View Press, 1991. 270 pages, $39 hardcover ($32 AIC members). Available from American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works, 1717 K St., N.W., Suite 301, Washington, D.C. 20006.NATIONAL COMMITTEE TO SAVE AMERICA'S CULTURAL COLLECTIONS CARING FOR YOUR COLLECTIONSNew York: Harry N. Abrams, 1992. 216 pages, $45 hardcover ($30 AIC members). Available from American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works, 1717 K St., N.W., Suite 301, Washington, D.C. 20006.NATIONAL PARK SERVICE MUSEUM HANDBOOK, PART I: MUSEUM COLLECTIONSWashington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1991. $36 loose-leaf notebook. Available from Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 20402.

Three books published in 1991 and 1992 are aimed at encouraging the preservation care given to our cultural heritage by nonconservators, including private collectors, collection administrators, and the general public. Each book has a different approach, organization, and targeted audience to influence concerning the necessity of preventive care of individual objects and large collections. However, all three embrace preventive maintenance over treatment-oriented conservation.

Guide to Environmental Protection of Collections is written for collectors, curators, and administrators rather than professional conservators. The approach taken toward conservation is holistic. Prevention is recommended as a wiser option than relying on treatment after damage has occurred. The tone is conversational. This guide is not a do-it-yourself book. The role and responsibilities of the conservator, as well as the owner or caretaker of a collection, are reviewed.

Great effort is put into incorporating new ideas, attitudes, and information about preventive maintenance activities, such as pest management and practical aspects of climate control, along with the more frequently published environmental factors and deterioration problems of specific materials. The author acknowledges that her attempt to update the state of conservation will be outdated by rapid and ongoing growth in many areas of the discussion. Also, in addressing so many different topics and materials, coverage is necessarily brief and general. Nevertheless, the book offers nonconservators an easy-to-understand, nontechnical, and current summary of state-of-the-art collections care.

The text is divided into two parts: “The Five Major Issues in Environmental Protection of Collections” and “Assessing the Needs of Collections.” The five issues include temperature and relative humidity, light and lighting, air quality, mold and pest control, and preventing physical damage.

Of these five issues, the discussion of temperature and relative humidity may be one of the most helpful to the conservator (and the most lengthy) . The ideal standards are reviewed and followed by the few successes and the more prevalent failures of new designs and retrofitted heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems to create and maintain the desired standards of temperature and relative humidity. Damage caused by improperly designed and impractical climate control systems to structures and objects is explained. The special problems of historic or older buildings not originally designed as museums are included. No general conservation book has so frankly admitted these problems. The author goes on to suggest that in current thinking, a compromise is frequently necessary. This section, unlike the others, ends with a summary.

“Light and Lighting” reviews the damage to different materials caused by light. Recommendations to reduce light damage are by controlling exposure, wavelength, oxygen level, heat and relative humidity, and photography. “Air Quality” briefly lists the principal contaminants, such as sulfur, chlorides, nitrogen oxides, formaldehyde, and particulates, from both indoor and outdoor sources. This short section is not so different from other published material.

The discussion in “Mold and Pest Control” concentrates on the movement away from the overuse of hazardous chemicals in the past to combat pest problems. The concept of integrated pest management is introduced but not elaborated on. Descriptions of common pests are too brief to be any more than a reminder of the types of possible intruders. Good practical advice is given about careful handling and safe use of insecticides and fumigants around personnel and in contact with artifacts. References to identify insects and for further reading are given both in the text and in the reading and resource lists.

“Preventing Physical Damage” discusses the importance of careful handling, storage and display methods and materials, and loan procedures. A section called “What to Do When Damage Occurs” refers primarily to accidental or careless handling problems with single or small groups of objects. One notable omission is any discussion of disaster or emergency contingency plans. In the introduction, one of seven guiding steps—including actions such as keeping records and monitoring conditions—is planning for disasters. A paragraph of warning is issued but little further attention is given to the subject. Neither disaster planning nor emergency preparedness is included in the index or appendix.

Part 2, “Assessing the Needs of Collections,” is divided into four sections by material type: inorganic materials, organic materials, objects of mixed materials, and assessing a specific collection. The problems and weaknesses of specific materials as diverse as furniture, fossils, ceramics, works of art on paper, and ethnographic objects are briefly covered. Ethical and practical approaches to the problems of planning a treatment and tips for proper storage, display, and maintenance or housekeeping activities follow. Directions for undertaking these activities are not elaborated on. Consultation with a conservator is wisely advised.

The appendix lists 13 readily available readings: sources of supplies, including full addresses, phone numbers, and descriptions of services; sources of information; and one sample of a paintings record form.

While a petty complaint, the small type and lack of right justification of the two-column layout made reading difficult. Minimal use of illustrations or bold graphics at the divisions between chapters and subheadings contributes to the monotonous presentation. The book is easiest to use as a reference rather than for reading from cover to cover.

Conservators undertaking general collection assessments, especially in historic structures or older buildings, will find the Guide to Environmental Protection of Collections a handy companion to recommend along with their survey reports.

Caring for Your Collections is a series of essays about preserving cultural heritage written by conservation professionals with various areas of specialization. Designed to appeal to a large general audience, especially private collectors, Caring for Your Collections is a lavish publication with many illustrations and color photographs. The print is large and the design looks professionally executed. With a broader intended audience than the Guide to Environmental Protection of Collections, the focus is more on the specific materials objects are made of. Environmental concerns are specifically addressed in two initial essays, “The Mortality of Things” and “Creating and Maintaining the Right Environment.” Environmental information is more limited and less technical than in the Guide to Environmental Protection of Collections.

Eleven essays discuss the preservation needs of diverse types of art and artifacts, including paintings, works on paper, library and archival collections, photographs, furniture, textiles, decorative arts, metal objects, stone objects, musical instruments, and ethnographic materials. Although the quality of each chapter varies depending on the author, the characteristics and weaknesses of the material, its environmental requirements, proper handling, storage, and display techniques are addressed. Situations that require professional conservation help are compared to basic housekeeping activities and handling precautions that an owner should undertake. More detailed information about specific materials is provided than in the Guide to Environmental Protection of Collections due to the greater length allotted to the essays.

The final six essays provide information about security, investment, authentication, and how to find a conservator. Inclusion of all these related subjects is unique in conservation literature for the public.

The appendices include conservation resources and further readings. In keeping with the needs of the large public audience, the list of conservation resources is more extensive regarding organizational groups and more limited in references to manufacturers. Telephone numbers are not included for organizations. Manufacturers are restricted to general conservation suppliers and suppliers of storage containers and materials. “Further Reading,” which is divided by material type following the essay order, is more extensive and broad-reaching than the list in the Guide to Environmental Protection of Collections.

Despite the number of different authors, the presentations are uniform and flow easily in tone and style. Caring for Your Collections is an attractive, easily read, and informative presentation of conservation for the private collector and general public.

The Museum Handbook Part 1 was prepared for use by administrators and curators at National Park Service sites. The ultimate goal is to create a three-part publication covering all aspects of museum management. Part 1 covers environmental issues, storage and display techniques, and characteristics and needs of specific materials that are addressed in the Guide to Environmental Protection of Collections. The handbook goes far beyond the other two books to achieve its goal of helping staff make competent decisions regarding general collections management. Ethics, federal laws, and collections policies are examples of material discussed that is outside the interest of the private collector or general public. Conservators conducting general assessments and collections surveys will find the Museum Handbook Part 1 a useful reference tool.

The handbook is presented in a loose-leaf binder with dividers for quick reference. The chapters and appendices are numbered within each section to permit additions and deletions in the future. The text is in full-page outline form. There are a few photographs and line drawings. The other two books suggest selecting specific chapters of interest to read; theMuseum Handbook is laid out as an easy-to-use reference guide. The information is more in-depth and includes some direction to undertake recommendations amid careful warnings of when to consult conservators. Excellent guidance is given toward creating a disaster plan and initiating an integrated pest management plan.

Despite differences in presentation style, depth of coverage, and scope, several chapters and appendices in the Museum Handbook cover the same material as the Guide to Environmental Protection of Collections and Caring for Your Collections. Appendices I–P discuss the care of specific materials, including archaeological objects, paper, textiles, paintings, cellulose nitrate, wood, metal, ceramics, glass, and stone. The appendices generally include the nature of the material, handling and basic housekeeping, storage and display methods, preventive care, and bibliographies.

All three books successfully promote conservation and the philosophy of preventive maintenance. Caring for Your Collections is the better introduction to conservation for the public. Guide to Environmental Protection of Collections effectively focuses private collectors on making timely and informed decisions about the care of objects. The Museum Handbook will be best utilized by site administrators or curators to make changes in their current policies and practices. All nonconservators benefit from the efforts of the many authors of these three books.

Meg LoewCraftArt Conservation and Technical Services, 410 Lyman Ave., Baltimore, Md. 21212ROBERTPAYTON, EDITORRETRIEVAL OF OBJECTS FROM ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITESLondon: Archetype Publications, 1992. 166 pages, $25 softcover. ISBN 1-873132-30-1. Available from: Archetype Books, 31–34 Gordon Sq., London WC1H 0PY, U.K.

Archaeological field conservators have been concerned with the safe retrieval of artifacts and information from archaeological sites for as long as they have been part of excavation teams. Over the years, conservators, as well as archaeologists, have developed methods and procedures for safely removing artifacts and features from all kinds of sites: dry, wet, waterlogged, and underwater. This book contains a diverse set of papers that were originally presented at a seminar on retrieval at the Summer School of the Institute of Archaeology, London. Fourteen papers, arranged as chapters, discuss various case studies of recovery projects, ranging from small objects on dry sites to large objects from marine sites.

It is never made clear whether the book is meant to be a textbook of sorts for archaeologists, conservation students, and conservators who have never done fieldwork, or a detailed treatment of lifting techniques for experienced field conservators. As a result, it is only partly successful for each group.

The book does not provide step-by-step procedures on how to lift artifacts and features out of the ground. Readers expecting to gain detailed instructions on lifting techniques will be disappointed. Unfortunately, the weakest paper in the book, “On-Site Conservation Techniques: Lifting Principles and Methods” by Robert Payton, is the one attempting to provide an overview of different lifting techniques, the properties of different materials used in lifting, and ways of making choices among them. Payton assumes far too much technical knowledge for archaeologists. For example, he states, “Consolidant is applied to the object as required.” The choice and application of consolidants are complex decisions requiring considerable knowledge about the properties of all the materials involved as well as the deterioration of artifacts. While consolidation is not the subject of this book, it can play an important role in lifting procedures and needs to be discussed in greater detail for the nonconservator. Even though conservators with no field experience are knowledgeable about consolidants, they, too, will need more information about the special situations presented by field conditions. It is one thing to apply a consolidant to an object in a lab; it is a very different matter to apply one in the field, particularly under adverse conditions.

The format of the chapter is cumbersome, making the various techniques seem more complicated than necessary. Important points tend to get lost in awkward sentences and in references back and forth between techniques. To be fair, this is a large and difficult topic to organize and present in a few pages, but for this chapter to be of practical use to archaeologists and students, it would need to be longer and much more detailed.

The strength of the book lies in its emphasis on the theory behind various lifting projects, making it of great interest to the experienced field conservator. The lifting examples have been chosen well to illustrate what can be done, even under adverse conditions and severe time constraints. Given a little time, expertise, and ingenuity, even seemingly impossible lifts can be achieved, as demonstrated by two papers on lifting complete kilns and one on lifting an almost 39 ft long wet boat.

Of particular interest in several papers is a summary of the thought processes and considerations that went into the planning of the more complicated jobs. John Price in “Retrieving the Larger Structure: Ideas and Case Studies in Lifting Technology,” for example, provides a good discussion of the conservator-archaeologist relationship necessary to plan and execute a large lifting project. Dana Brown also addresses the interaction between conservators and archaeologists in “The Lifting of Roman Floor and Wall Structures,” emphasizing how concessions and compromises must be made on both sides.

Simon Dove and Ruth Goldstraw in “Lifting the Kirkburn Mail Tunic” present a clear, concise discussion of the different options available for lifting the tunic and why they chose the method they did. James Spriggs in “Lifting a Viking Timber Structure at Coppergate, York” provides a good discussion on choice of materials. As Spriggs points out, however, the lift described in his paper took place more than 10 years ago and some of the materials used then have been supplanted by better ones. This mention of newer, more appropriate materials serves to illustrate the field conservator's continuous quest for better materials for use on site.

Helen Jones in “The Retrieval of Grave Goods from Medieval and Roman Cemeteries in London” presents a particularly valuable paper from several points of view. First, it clearly illustrates the thinking involved in coming up with successful, workable methods. A number of variations of a simple lifting technique are presented, illustrating how different artifacts with different requirements affect the choice of technique or dictate variations to standard techniques. After discussing the methods planned for lifting a variety of grave goods, Jones goes on to explain which ones were successful and which ones were not. For the latter, she explains why they did not work and what was done on site to accomplish the lift. Anyone who has done even the most simple lifts in the field knows that things do not always go according to plan, and one frequently needs to be able to think on one's feet to come up with alternate plans quickly.

Most of the lifts described in this book are rescue operations conducted under adverse conditions. Tight schedules and remote locations frequently force the use of less than optimum materials and equipment. The retrieval team must often adapt lifting methods to the materials that are readily on hand. This point is illustrated particularly well by Charlotte Newton and Judith Logan in “On-Site Conservation with the Canadian Conservation Institute.” Not only do they show ingenuity in using unusual but readily available materials, such as sphagnum moss for cushioning and packing lifted artifacts, but they also illustrate how standard lifting techniques can be adapted to successfully lift artifacts under unusual conditions such as permafrost. The ability of Canadian conservators to come up with low-cost, creative, and practical solutions never ceases to amaze.

Other papers address the lifting of skeletal remains, the retrieval of artifacts from a marine environment, and the removal of large objects, such as kilns and boats. Two molding techniques for retrieving stone inscriptions are also included.

All of the papers in the book are profusely illustrated with photographs and line drawings of excellent quality. They clearly illustrate the text and are extremely helpful, especially in the papers describing complicated lifts.

While there is much useful information in this book, the addition of certain topics would have greatly strengthened it, particularly for the experienced field conservator. For example, only the conservator's point of view is given. It would have been interesting to get the perspective of the archaeologists involved in the projects. What were their concerns, for example, and how did they differ from those of the conservator? How were these differences resolved? How disruptive was the lifting project to the excavation? The archaeologist's view can differ considerably from that of the conservator on this point. Such undertakings, particularly large, complicated ones, require the cooperation of all members of the team. Mutual understanding of and respect for the concerns of others are critical to the success of such projects.

In addition, more discussion of planning details, organization, and evaluations of successes and failures would have been of interest. Some of the projects discussed were large, calling for heavy equipment and considerable people power, while others were accomplished with a minimal budget and resources. It would have been interesting to know the cost of the various projects and have some discussion about creative approaches to procuring equipment, such as cranes and large flatbed trucks, necessary for difficult lifting jobs.

A number of omissions detract from the overall usefulness of the book. For example, the lack of an index makes it difficult for the reader to collate information on a given technique or material that might be discussed in many different chapters. A comprehensive bibliography would have greatly added to the value of the book. At the end of each chapter, some authors include lists of materials used, while others do not. Among the former, there is no consistency; some provide detailed information on suppliers and safety procedures to be observed, while others do not.

Due to the limitations mentioned above, this book cannot serve as the definitive work on retrieval. It does provide useful information that should be of interest to all readers: the archaeologist, the conservation student interested in archaeological conservation, the conservator who has never worked in the field, and the experienced field conservator. In helping archaeologists to better understand lifting procedures, this book should serve to increase their understanding of the field conservator's point of view. It is hoped that this will promote better communication between archaeologists and conservators working together, for it is only by understanding and respecting each other's viewpoint that lifting problems can be solved creatively and effectively. The book provides conservation students and conservators who have never worked in the field an insight into the lifting of artifacts and features from sites, underscoring the importance of planning, organization, cooperation, and ingenuity. For experienced field conservators, it offers insights into the way colleagues have gone about solving problems we have all faced in the field. In spite of its shortcomings, this book should be a welcome addition to the both the conservator's and archaeologist's bookshelf.

CatherineSeaseDivision of Conservation, Field Museum, Roosevelt Road at Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Ill. 60605TERRYDRAYMAN-WEISSER, EDITORDialogue/89: THE CONSERVATION OF BRONZE SCULPTURE IN THE OUTDOOR ENVIRONMENTHouston: National Association of Corrosion Engineers, 1992. 390 pages. $69 softcover ($48 NACE members). ISBN 1-877914-38-X. Available from NACE, P.O. Box 218340, Houston, Tex. 77281-8340.VIRGINIAN. NAUDÉ AND GLENN WHARTON GUIDE TO THE MAINTENANCE OF OUTDOOR SCULPTURE. Washington, D.C.: American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works. 1993. 62 pages, softcover. $15. ISBN 0-933098-06-5. Available from AIC, 1717 K St., N.W., Suite 301, Washington, D.C. 20006.

Our ability to preserve outdoor bronze sculptures has progressed incrementally during the past 25 years, primarily due to a small but significant number of dedicated practitioners and researchers. These advances and the promise of more to come are documented in Dialogue/89: The Conservation of Bronze Sculpture in the Outdoor Environment. This volume, which contains more than 50 photos and numerous well-designed charts and diagrams, represents the published proceedings of a conference of the same name that took place at Johns Hopkins University in July 1989.

Dialogue/89 is of primary interest to conservators and scientists with specific involvement in the field of outdoor bronze conservation. However, it has broader significance as an excellent model for an approach to problem solving based on interdisciplinary dialogue. The text not only contains 19 of the papers presented at the conference; it includes transcripts of the subsequent dialogues among the presenters and a multidisciplinary audience of conference participants.

Consistent with the conference program, the book is divided into three main sections, each exploring a major component of the conservation of outdoor bronze monuments: “Environment and Corrosion,” “Conservation Practice,” and “Present Assessments and Future Plans.”

“Environment and Corrosion” contains articles that characterize the corrosive substances in the atmosphere, the mechanisms by which they attack outdoor sculptures, and the corrosion products that are left behind. In “The Corrosivity of the Atmosphere: Past, Present, and Future,” Thomas E. Graedel constructs an assessment, based on available historical data, of the components and concentrations of atmospheric pollution in urban industrial environments and in India's Gangetic Plain from 1890 to 1980. He then makes projections for acidity, sulfur dioxide, and chloride constituents in 50-year increments until the year 2080. All of these predictions suggest that the corrosivity of the environment will become more severe during the next century even if technological advances in controlling emissions can be implemented.

Another important contribution to this section is “Bronze Corrosion: Rates and Chemical Processes,” by J. H. Payer. This article clearly summarizes the basic concepts of atmospheric corrosion and discusses the significant aspects of bronze metallurgy relevant to the corrosion process. In addition, Payer characterizes the range of corrosion products that can occur on outdoor bronzes under exposure to a variety of pollutants.

“Conservation Practices” contains a review of current techniques for corrosion removal as well as informative articles about organic coatings and artificial patination. In “The Cleaning of Weathered Bronze Monuments: A Review of Current Corrosion Removal Techniques,” Andrew Lins presents a concise survey of the techniques most often used in cleaning corroded bronze monuments. This summary is followed by a description of tests comparing the degree of surface deformation as well as the extent of corrosion product removal achieved by glass-bead peening, walnut-shell blasting, and ultra-high water jet blasting. Other less popular techniques, such as the use of abrasive pads, corn cobs, and EDTA poultices, are discussed as well. These comparisons, which constitute a rare attempt to reflect real treatment conditions, have important implications for the practitioner who chooses to treat corroded bronzes by removing corrosion products.

“Present Assessments and Future Plans” provides a context for understanding the scope of the preservation challenge presented by outdoor monuments. The first steps toward confronting this problem are to identify the existing monuments and describe their condition in a clear and consistent way. “Sculpture Surveys: A Summary of Projects Complete, in Progress, and Planned,” by Michael W. Panhorst, lists and describes some of the major outdoor sculpture inventories in North America. It includes a description of ongoing efforts by the Save Outdoor Sculpture! (SOS!) program to produce a comprehensive inventory and condition assessment of outdoor sculpture in the United States.

Panhorst also describes some of the other, less publicized, databases that are presently in use, such as the American Monument and Outdoor Sculpture (AMOS) database developed by the National Park Service. This database contains a listing compiled from Monumental News, a trade journal of the monument industry that listed competitions, commissions, and construction news of outdoor sculpture and public monuments between 1880 and 1930.

Also in this section is a useful and important article by Martin E. Weaver. “Future Needs in Survey Protocols” discusses the need for and the difficulties involved in establishing a consistent way to describe the condition of outdoor monuments.

While almost all of the articles in Dialogue/89 are useful and informative, the transcripts of the open dialogue sessions are the most stimulating. These dialogues, which were free enough to allow for a degree of open debate and creative speculation, emphasize the need for more exploration of the interaction between outdoor bronze sculptures and the earth's increasingly hostile environment. While there appears to be general agreement among corrosion scientists about the broad outlines of the corrosion process, the specifics are clearly a matter of some debate.

These dialogues bring to life the communication between scientists and conservation practitioners. They provide a forum for discussing a wide range of issues with very direct relevance for conservation treatment. Complex questions are at least explored, if not fully answered: the implications of removing corrosion products, the relative effectiveness of various coatings, or the implications of withholding treatment until further research is done. These dialogues include contributions from art historian Michael Richman and curator Lewis Sharp, who participated in the program but whose presentations are not included in the published work.

For those conservators not directly involved in research or treatment of outdoor bronze sculptures, or for other professionals faced with making choices about collections care, Dialogue/89 may seem to provide more questions than answers. Perhaps that is the necessary outcome of any conference about an evolving body of knowledge. For conservators and scientists engaged in the preservation of outdoor monuments, however, Dialogue/89 also offers clear evidence that incremental progress is being made in our understanding of this complex and pressing preservation problem.

While the goal of Dialogue/89 is to understand the corrosion process and formulate treatments that will preserve outdoor monuments, the goal of Guide to the Maintenance of Outdoor Sculpture, by Virginia N. Naudé and Glenn Wharton, is to describe how to go about getting the work done.

This short volume is a guide to planning for and obtaining collections care and conservation treatment. The term “maintenance,” a deliberate choice of the authors, was chosen to “evoke the day-to-day activities involved in collections care.” Maintenance is understood in its broadest possible meaning and is used to encompass everything from record keeping to public education to the procurement of conservation treatments.

The intended audience for this guide includes a dministrators, curators, registrars, and others responsible for the care of outdoor sculptures. Therefore, it does not contain specific maintenance procedures for individual artifacts. In fact, the reader is well advised that maintenance procedures should be developed in collaboration with a conservator and other professionals.

Chapter 1 defines the need for maintenance of outdoor cultural property in today's hostile environment. It delineates some of the historical and procedural problems involved. Beginning with “Surveying the Collection” and ending with “Contracting Maintenance Activities,” five of the chapters describe the process of developing a strategy for long-term care of cultural artifacts.

Chapter 6, “Materials Used in Outdoor Sculpture,” describes the range of materials commonly found to constitute outdoor sculpture and summarizes some of the cyclical maintenance procedures and conservation treatments that these materials tend to require.

The information presented in this guide tends towards the general and avoids in-depth consideration of the complex and vexing ethical and technical choices inherent in caring for outdoor sculpture. However, it does effectively provide a perspective on collections care that is sorely needed by well-intentioned officials in small towns and historical societies and even by those responsible for some corporate collections.

This is a book that both private practitioners and museum conservators can recommend to those who are just beginning the process of planning for the care of outdoor sculpture. With numerous photographs and multicolor graphics, it is a good vehicle for public education about the process.

The only reservations that one might have in recommending this guide are philosophical. For instance, the authors include conservation treatment as part of the broad definition of maintenance. In doi0ng so, they blur the distinction between the two and fail to point out that for many, perhaps most, outdoor sculptures conservation treatment is a necessary prerequisite to regular maintenance.

Another philosophical concern is that on finishing this book, a lay reader might have the impression that getting the job done requires only that you hire the right experts. Yet many of the monuments we restore belong to the community. Therefore, it is important for the community to share responsibility for treatment decisions. This can only happen if the public is informed that the present state of our knowledge about preserving outdoor monuments is incomplete and ethical issues as well as technical problems are not fully resolved.

Making public the evolving state of our knowledge is especially necessary if we are to elicit public support for research like that presented in Dialogue/89. Furthering such research will enable us to work more effectively, ethically, and economically to maintain all of our outdoor cultural heritage.

CliffordCraineDaedalus, Inc., 17 Tudor St., Cambridge, Mass. 02139

LETTERS WELCOMED

The editor welcomes comments from readers both in general and on specific papers. Please indicate if your communication is intended for publication.


Copyright © 1994 American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works