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News NEH grant supports WUDPAC students

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​Students in the Winterthur / University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation (WUDPAC) working in the conservation labs at the Winterthur Museum. From left: Lauren Fair, associate objects conservator at Winterthur Museum; graduate student Haddon Dine; and graduate student Cassia Balogh. Photo by Evan Krape for UDaily.

​A grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities allows UD art conservation students to concentrate on skills, studies, and practice. From the February 26 article by Beth Miller for UDaily:

Step into the conservation and research laboratories of Winterthur Museum's Research Building - enter almost any door - and you find an astonishing array of things that humans have created and collected, things that shed light on the human condition, on social interactions around the world and on the historical context that is foundational to making sense of life in all its grandeur and sorrow. In one room alone, you can see objects crafted almost 2,500 years ago, a clownish-but-foreboding mask once used in Japanese theater, a curious 19th century aquarium-like structure complete with dangling fish figurines and tiny silk curtains, and the now-quaint 20th century circuitry of an early computer's motherboard.

You see immediately the extraordinary reach a new $150,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) will have for graduate students in the Winterthur/University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation. The NEH will add $25,000 more if the program raises that much support from other sources. The grant buys something the world-class facilities cannot provide - a chance to focus. "It's a real strength of this program," said Lauren Fair, an alumna now on the staff at Winterthur and an affiliated faculty member at UD. "It really helps in significant ways. Entering a graduate program in art conservation is very difficult and often required internships are unpaid. This [funding] allows our students to focus on their work." . . .

​Graduate student Keara Teeter (left) with Joyce Hill Stoner, the Edward F. and Elizabeth Goodman Rosenberg Professor of Material Culture and the Director of Preservation Studies for the UD Doctoral Program. Photo by Evan Krape for UDaily.

The grant supports a mind-blowing range of work. Some students are addressing objects brought to one of Winterthur's clinics, where the public is invited - free of charge - to meet with a conservator to discuss an item.

Such a project is the focus of Keara Teeter, who has been working with a painting brought to the Winterthur clinic. Conservators believe it was painted by a follower or close associate of 17th century artist David Teniers, the Younger. Using photo-microscopy and cross-sectional analysis, Teeter studied a tiny sample and determined that the work contains lead-tin yellow paint, a pigment used predominantly in the period in which Teniers painted and soon after replaced by Naples yellow. "That helped us conclude this painting was contemporary to him, not a 19th century copy," Teeter said.

To learn more about how support from the National Endowment for the Humanities impacts the work of graduate students at the University of Delaware, read the full UDaily article here.

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A grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities allows UD art conservation students to concentrate on skills, studies, and practice.

​A grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities allows UD art conservation students to concentrate on skills, studies, and practice.

3/2/2018
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  • The Department of Art Conservation
  • 303 Old College
  • University of Delaware
  • Newark, DE 19716, USA
  • Phone: 302-831-3489
  • art-conservation@udel.edu