The Mechanics of Art Materials and Its Future in Heritage Science
In late 2016, “The Mechanics of Art Materials and Its Future in Heritage Science: A Seminar and Symposium” was held at the Smithsonian Institution’s historic Arts and Industries Building. Organized by the Smithsonian’s Museum Conservation Institute (MCI) and the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Schools of Architecture, Design and Conservation, the two-day event brought experts in mechanics research from across the globe to discuss current and future trends in the study and preservation of cultural heritage. Speakers represented a continuum of innovative mechanics research in the cultural heritage sector, from its origins at the Smithsonian to current professionals working to shape the field and train future generations of scholars. The event began with the popular paint mechanics workshop created and taught by MCI senior research scientist emeritus Marion Mecklenburg, condensed into a single-day seminar of lectures and discussion. The second day featured an international group of speakers and case studies on the state of mechanics research around the globe, with an afternoon program focused on emerging U.S.-based speakers and their thoughts on the future of the field. This volume reflects a collaborative view of cultural heritage research in mechanics; beginning with a review of mechanics research at the Smithsonian Institution and followed by the nine papers presented by the symposium speakers, this publication incorporates the work of 15 national and international research centers. The Appendix includes a bibliography of Dr. Mecklenburg’s publications and his previously unpublished 1982 report on the mechanical behavior of painting materials.
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