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University of Delaware

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  • Joan Irving, Paper Conservator

    Paper Conservator
    Affiliated Associate Professor
    University of Delaware
    Newark, DE 19716


    Joan received a B.A. in Art History from the University of Pennsylvania, graduating Summa Cum Laude in 1982. From 1985 to 1988, Joan coordinated the exhibition, catalogue, and conservation for “Legacies of Genius,” an exhibition of over 200 rare books, manuscripts, and works of art on paper from thirteen Philadelphia-area special collections libraries. Her pre-program experience included work as a paper conservation technician at the American Philosophical Society and at the Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts (CCAHA), the regional conservation laboratory in Philadelphia.

    Since graduating from the Winterthur/University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation (WUDPAC) in 1995, Joan has had a distinguished career at CCAHA, where she served as head of the Paper Section, supervising a staff of 22 conservators and technicians. Joan has taught and consulted extensively and treated a wide variety of fine art and historic documents on paper, parchment and papyrus. She has developed a specialty in architectural drawings and has lectured nationally on their care and treatment. She has treated several iconic American documents including Jefferson’s second draft of the Declaration of Independence, George Washington’s printed copy of the Constitution and Francis Scott Key’s manuscript of the Star Spangled Banner.

    Joan now serves as Assistant Director of Conservation and Senior Paper Conservator of Winterthur Museum and Affiliated Associate Professor of the Winterthur and University of Delaware Art Conservation Program. In 2006, she received the University of Delaware’s Presidential Citation for Outstanding Achievement.



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  • The Department of Art Conservation
  • 303 Old College
  • University of Delaware
  • Newark, DE 19716, USA
  • Phone: 302-831-3489