Job Opening: Univ. of Kansas

Application deadline: February 23, 2015
Apply at: https://employment.ku.edu/staff/2712BR

The Conservation Services Department provides leadership, coordination, expertise, and services within a comprehensive, system-wide program to preserve KU Libraries’ paper-based collections.

Position Summary

The Assistant Conservator for Special Collections will serve a central role in the Stannard Conservation Laboratory with primary responsibility for special collections held by Kenneth Spencer Research Library. This position, under the direct supervision of the Head of Conservation Services, helps manage and undertake a range of mission-critical daily operations of the Stannard Conservation Laboratory including: evaluating damaged collections; making treatment decisions and performing conservation treatments on special collections materials; providing exhibition preparation and support; undertaking conservation assessments and surveys; and participating in emergency preparedness and response operations.

Position Description:

Conservation treatment—70%

Drafts treatment proposals and specifications, and provides basic time estimates for work to be undertaken, for rare books, manuscripts, archival materials, and other paper-based library collections.

Performs highly complex conservation tasks that require knowledge and expertise in multiple techniques to solve unique problems. Treatments applied in combination include but are not limited to conservation rebinding, rebacking and board reattachment; surface cleaning; aqueous washing and alkalization treatments; mending with various papers; lining; backing removal; tape and adhesive removal; matting and encapsulation; and enclosure construction.

Carries out proposed treatments and repairs to library and archival materials with minimal supervision and in accordance with accepted standards for conservation practice.

Documents treatments using a range of written and photographic techniques according to accepted standards for conservation practice.

Selects and uses appropriate specialized tools and equipment appropriate for the treatment, including, but not limited to: hand tools, book presses, board shear, guillotine, ultrasonic welder, and suction table; may also perform maintenance on this equipment.
Designs and constructs both simple and complex, custom-fitting enclosures for fragile materials bearing in mind the unique needs of those formats and their chemical interactions with the materials available for construction.

Assists in the preparation of library materials for exhibition. Fabricates simple and complex mounts. Assists with installation and de-installation.

Project management—15%

Develops and implements workflows for conservation projects.

Assists in training staff, students, interns, and volunteers, as necessary.

Provides technical advice on the housing, storage, handling and repair of special collections.

Advises library staff on conservation principles and practices.

 

 

Departmental responsibilities—15%

Serves on the Collections Emergency Response Team and assists with disaster preparedness and recovery operations following standard procedures.

Undertakes collection surveys to assess condition and prioritize conservation treatments, as necessary.

Assists with preventive programs such as environmental monitoring and pest management as needed.

Stays current with developments in the field of library and archives conservation.

Prepares, conducts, and participates in staff and public outreach and education efforts.

Participates in departmental meetings and planning activities, including departmental goal-setting.

Compiles statistics and prepares reports as appropriate.

Assists with equipping the conservation laboratories to meet current and anticipated future treatment needs. May order supplies, tools, and equipment as needed.

Participates in the broader work of KU Libraries by serving on committees, working groups, and task forces as appropriate.
Other duties as assigned.

Qualifications

Required:

  • B.A. degree
  • 1 year relevant experience, including training in book or paper conservation.

 

Preferred:

  • M.A. degree from a recognized conservation training program or related field, or demonstration of a similar level of education and training required for the conservation of rare materials.
  • A portfolio of relevant work if selected for interview
  • Demonstrated knowledge of physical and chemical mechanisms of deterioration of library and archives materials.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of the fundamentals, techniques, and history of book- binding, paper treatment, and conservation.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of conservation ethics and practices relevant to research library and archival materials; commitment to the American Institute for Conservation’s Code of Ethics and Standards for Practice.
  • Excellent manual dexterity and sustained concentration with delicate and occasionally repetitive tasks.
  • Basic computer skills including word processing and use of spreadsheets.
  • Competency in Adobe Photoshop and InDesign.
  • Experience working in an academic research library.
  • Experience managing conservation technicians or students.
  • Experience evaluating and treating materials for digital imaging projects.
  • Experience in exhibit preparation.
  • Demonstrated record of continuing education in conservation through workshops, lectures, and conference attendance.
  • Ability to communicate effectively about treatment options and decisions.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently.
    Effective organizational skills.

For more information on Spencer Research Library’s collections, see: http://spencer.lib.ku.edu/

 

Job Opening: Conservator for Rare Books, Duke University Libraries

For the complete job announcement and how to apply, visit http://library.duke.edu/about/jobs/conservator

Conservator for Special Collections

The Conservator for Special Collections plans and carries out the physical treatment of special collections material from the Duke University Libraries including those from the Rubenstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Duke University Archives, and branch libraries. This position reports to the Head, Conservation Services Department (CSD).

Responsibilities

Conservation (80%)

    • Works with the department head and appropriate conservation and library staff to develop treatment strategies for special collections materials. Coordinates treatments and priorities with the Head of CSD.
Verne and Tanya Roberts Conservation Lab, Duke University Libraries.

Verne and Tanya Roberts Conservation Lab, Duke University Libraries.

  • Performs appropriate conservation treatments on library materials held in the Libraries’ rare and special collections in support of various workflows including those for Rubenstein Library User Services and Technical Services, the Digital Production Center, and the Exhibits Program. Scope of work includes treating primarily bound and unbound books, manuscripts and other documents on paper and vellum. Depending on the conservator’s expertise the scope may also include treating photographs, papyri, and other formats and substrates found in the collections. Documents treatments with photographs and written reports following CSD and American Institute for Conservation (AIC) guidelines and best practices.
  • Identifies items for which protective enclosures will be the most effective preservation option; constructs appropriate protective enclosures or delegates the construction of enclosures to other staff, students or volunteers.
  • Other related duties as assigned.

Departmental Support and Programming Initiatives (10%)

  • Participates in planning and setting goals, managing projects and developing workflows in support of CSD priorities.
  • Assists in providing disaster recovery services for library materials.
  • Other related duties as assigned.

Professional Development (10%)

  • Actively participates on appropriate Library committees, task forces or groups to meet the strategic goals of the Department and the Duke University Libraries.
  • Displays continuing growth in professional and subject knowledge and takes an active interest in the profession. Growth and interest should be demonstrated through continuing development of professional knowledge and abilities, membership and participation in professional organizations, and service to the library, University, or community in a professional capacity.

Supervisory Responsibilities

  • Provides training, supervision and quality control for students, staff and volunteers in coordination with the department head and/or senior conservator.
  • May serve as interim supervisor in the absence of the department head and senior conservator.

Qualifications

It is the expectation that all Duke University Libraries staff members will demonstrate exceptional workplace behaviors in the execution of their specific position responsibilities. These behaviors are customer focus, collaboration, creative problem solving, continuous learning and a commitment to diversity.

Education:

Required: ALA-accredited MLS or Master’s degree in conservation of library and archival materials, or demonstration of a similar level of education and training required for the conservation of rare materials.

Preferred: Demonstrated record of continued education in areas relevant to this position.

Experience:

Required:

  • Minimum of three years of demonstrated experience in conservation of special collections and knowledge of current conservation principles, practices, and procedures.
  • Exceptional manual skills and a full understanding of current conservation theory, principles, practices and procedures.
  • Knowledge of physical and chemical mechanisms of deterioration of library materials.
  • Knowledge of conservation ethics and practices relevant to research library materials; commitment to AIC standards of practice and Code of Ethics.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently and productively in a changing environment.
  • Strong organizational, interpersonal, and oral and written communication skills.

Preferred:

  • Prior experience working in an academic research library or archives.
  • Prior experience supervising conservation technicians and students.
  • Expertise in the treatment of photographic materials; works on art on paper, vellum and parchment; or similar cultural heritage materials generally found in academic libraries and university archives.
  • Experience evaluating and treating materials to prepare them for digital imaging and/or exhibitions.
  • Experience in exhibitions including preparation, installation, materials testing and environmental monitoring.
  • Teaching experience.

Job Opening: Winterthur/Univ. of Delaware

Job Posting: Book and Library Conservator – 
Winterthur Museum, Garden &Library (Winterthur, DE)

Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library seeks a Book and Library Conservator at the associate to full conservator level to care for its research library collections and teach in the Winterthur/University of Delaware Art Conservation Program.

Responsibilities include preservation administration and conservation of rare and circulating library collections, loan and exhibit preparation, collaboration with Library and Conservation staff to achieve institutional preservation goals, and supervision of staff and volunteers as needed.  The Book and Library conservator also holds an appointment as affiliated faculty at the University of Delaware,
providing instruction and mentoring of students in the Winterthur/University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation. The hours devoted to teaching for this position may vary from year to year, but the educational setting builds vital links to other conservation faculty, and links to graduate students from all the specialties.

Qulifications: The applicant must hold a Master’s degree in conservation or a Bachelor’s degree and equivalent experience.  Applicants should have 7 years of conservation experience with at least 5 of those years post degree or training and be a member of AIC preferably at the PA or Fellow level.  An MLIS and significant experience in a research library is desirable.

Interested candidates should forward a cover letter and resume to Human resources, Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library, 5105 Kennett Pike, Winterthur, DE  19735 or email <jobs@winterthur.org>.  EOE

Upcoming Conference: Significant Preservation: Inventories and Assessments for Strategic Planning

From the NCPC Press release:

Significant Preservation: Inventories and Assessments for Strategic Planning

North Carolina Preservation Consortium Annual Conference
William and Ida Friday Center for Continuing Education
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
November 7, 2014

Inventories and assessments of heritage collections and sites are vital for meaningful strategic planning that conveys the importance of allocating scarce resources for preservation programs. Establishing the significance of tangible heritage to the communities we serve is essential for prioritizing conservation, storage, exhibition, and emergency planning decisions to protect cultural treasures for present and future generations. This conference will help you influence organizational, political, and community leaders who have the authority to improve preservation funding. Register today for a valuable learning experience with state, national, and international preservation leaders.

Keynote Speakers

Veronica Bullock is the Co-founder and Director of Significance International. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Prehistory/Archaeology from the Australian National University and a master’s degree in Applied Science (Materials Conservation) from the University of Western Sydney. Her fellowship at the International Center for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property explored how significance assessments and risk assessments are taught in graduate conservation programs in Australia, Canada, the United States, and several countries in Europe. Ms. Bullock will provide an overview of the Significance Assessment methodology developed by the Collections Council of Australia.

Lisa Ackerman is the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the World Monuments Fund and a Visiting Assistant Professor at the Pratt Institute. She holds a BA from Middlebury College, an MS in historic preservation from the Pratt Institute, and an MBA from New York University. Her professional service has included membership on the boards of the Historic House Trust of New York City, New York Preservation Archive Project, St. Ann Center for Restoration and the Arts, Partners for Sacred Places, Neighborhood Preservation Center, and the U.S. National Committee of the International Council on Monuments and Sites. Ms. Ackerman will present an introduction to the Arches heritage inventory and management system.

Dr. Paul R. Green is a Cultural Resources Specialist for the U.S. Air Force Civil Engineer Center, an Adjunct Associate Professor at Old Dominion University, and a modern Monuments Man. He holds a BS from Marshall University, MA from the University of Missouri-Columbia, and a PhD in Anthropology (Archaeology) from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Green is a member of the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) Historical/Cultural Advisory Group and the International Military Cultural Resources Working Group. He will address the challenges and importance of prioritizing global heritage collections and sites for the protection of cultural property during war and armed conflicts.

Lightening Session Speakers

Martha Battle Jackson is Chief Curator for North Carolina Historic Sites. She will provide an overview of the Museum Assessment Program (MAP) for Collection Stewardship sponsored by the American Alliance of Museums.

Andrea Gabriel is Outreach & Development Coordinator for the North Carolina State Archives. She will present an introduction to the Traveling Archivist Program (TAP) administered by the North Carolina Office of Archives & History.

David Goist is a painting conservator in private practice. He will give an overview of the Conservation Assessment Program (CAP) sponsored by Heritage Preservation.

 

For more information on the conference schedule, registration, scholarships, etc., see the NCPC events page.

In The News: The David Livingstone Spectral Imaging Project

On this morning’s Marketplace (TM) was this little gem. Good to see conservation science in the mainstream media.

by Noel King
Wednesday, October 1, 2014 – 05:00
STORY

The David Livingstone Spectral Imaging Project
Spectral ratio version of Livingstone, The 1871 Field Diary, 297b/157-138

If you were around during the 80s, you probably remember the Indiana Jones movies—The swashbuckling archaeologist traveled the world digging up ancient treasures.

If you were to go looking for a real-life, present-day Indiana Jones, you might get someone like Michael Toth. He and his teams travel around the world using modern technology—lasers, high-tech cameras—to unearth treasure. It’s centuries-old writing that appears in very faint form on manuscripts called palimpsests. Along the way they’ve discovered everything from lost languages to some very mysterious fingerprints.

You’re not discovering ancient manuscripts; you’re working to read what’s buried in them. Tell me a little about the work you do?

We work on a range of manuscripts—the earliest copy of Archimedes work, David Livingston’s diaries, and we use spectral imaging to reveal that text which is not seen by the naked eye.

Why isn’t that text visible? We’re talking about two different layers of writing here, right?

That is correct. It’s usually on parchment. And they’re written initially with an ink made out of the galls of oak trees and that’s been scraped off and overwritten. And in doing so, it’s preserved that text underneath it.

See the entire Marketplace story online.

Exhibit of Rare Books at University of Dayton (Dayton, Ohio)

I had the opportunity to get a sneak peak at the new exhibit at the University of Dayton’s Roesch Library this weekend. If you are anywhere near Dayton in the next five weeks, I encourage you to drop by. It is an amazing collection of books and writing from papyri to fine bindings. From the press release:

Some of the rarest books in the world will be on display at the University of Dayton this fall, from authors like Austen, Chaucer, Copernicus, Marie Curie, Shakespeare and Mark Twain.

“Imprints and Impressions: Milestones in Human Progress” will feature first editions, manuscripts, galley proofs, papyri and illustrations spanning the scholarly spectrum from philosophy to physics. The free, public exhibit runs Sept. 29 through Nov. 9 in the Roesch Library first-floor gallery on the University of Dayton campus.

Johannes Kepler, “Astronomia Nova (New Astronomy),” Heidelberg or Prague, 1609. First edition.

The books and manuscripts are on loan from Stuart Rose, a Dayton-area businessman who has assembled one of the most accomplished collections of its kind in private hands, said rare book expert Nicholas Basbanes, author of several books, including A Gentle Madness, about book lovers and the lengths collectors go to find their treasures.

Basbanes said “Imprints and Impressions” is a rare opportunity to glimpse manuscripts and early editions that are often kept out of public view in private collections or locked in rooms at libraries.

“I don’t recall an exhibition quite like this in recent memory, certainly not one as comprehensive in scope as this, and with all the material coming from one private collection,” Basbanes said. “Stuart Rose has collected grandly, and in many areas. Most collectors of any consequence aspire to have at least one great book on their shelves. He has dozens, and there is nothing that is trivial or insignificant.”

Basbanes will kick off the exhibit with a lecture at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 29, in the Kennedy Union ballroom, followed by the public opening of the exhibit in Roesch Library. His address is one of more than 18 events around the exhibit expanding on co-curricular learning through talks, workshops and performances, with many open to the public.

For links to the amazing online exhibit, hours and directions, and other information, see the Roesch Library website.

Chronicle of Higher Ed: Born Digital, Projects Need Attention to Survive

Jennifer Howard, Chronicle of Higher Education, recently wrote a nice piece on the complications of preserving born-digital collections. It’s worth the read, and good to see these issues hit the academic newswires.

The first challenge is making sure people can get to the work when they do want to come. Analog or digital, no work will have much influence if it doesn’t stick around to be cited or argued with. The technological advances that make digital-humanities work possible also put it at risk of obsolescence, as software and hardware decay or become outmoded. Somebody—or a team of somebodies, often based in academic libraries or digital-scholarship centers—has to conduct regular inspections and make sure that today’s digital scholarship doesn’t become tomorrow’s digital junk.

Bradley J. Daigle, director of digital curation services at the University of Virginia Library, calls this “digital stewardship.” It’s an essential but easily overlooked element in any digital-humanities project. Born-digital work can die. Digital stewardship “involves care and feeding” to make sure that doesn’t happen, he says. “My unit essentially pays attention to the life cycle of the digital object.”

“Bradley Daigle, a digital curator at the U. of Virginia, and his colleagues Matthew Stephens and Lorrie Chisholm were in charge of preserving an early digital archive on the Civil War.”

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