About CU Conservation

Facts about the course and lab.

Object Handling

Posted on 22 March 2021 by natalielongworth

Working in conservation, we have a duty to look after objects that have been entrusted to us. Each time we handle objects, the risk that we could damage them increases. Often, damage can be caused by cumulative actions and can happen suddenly without any warning. It is vital that we minimize the risks by handling
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Evolution of British Pottery Marks

Posted on 19 March 2021 by tszcheung

Pottery marks are a dependable means by which the manufacturers, origins, production dates and so many details of the ceramics may be identified. Often, the marks include factory names or trademarks, the signatures of painters, potters or gilders and precise descriptive notes, generally set under the base of the piece. Although these pottery marks can
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Asian Lacquer – Sap Varieties and a Basic Guide to Purchasing Raw Lacquer

Posted on 16 January 2021 by jingyizhang

Asian lacquerware is a unique art form that involves coating objects with layers of natural resin to produce decorative and protective coatings. Asian lacquer is derived from the refined sap of several species of trees within the Anacardiaceae family, and different species are grown in different regions. It can be applied on almost any material
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Volunteering at National Museum Wales (Preventive conservation)

Posted on 27 May 2020 by Amanda Chua

Hello! Before I begin talking about my time volunteering, I should do a short introduction about myself. I’m a MSc Care of Collections student at Cardiff University. It’s a one year masters program where you learn about how to do preventive conservation. What is preventive conservation, you may ask? Don’t worry, I only really understood
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A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words (Glass Plate Negative Conservation)

Posted on 1 April 2020 by Henry Rincavage

I’ve always been fascinated with the process of developing negatives and film photography, so when I had to opportunity to pick the material type of my next object while studying Conservation at Cardiff University, I knew it had to be something photographic. To my delight, and possibly fright, I received a glass plate negative in
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Group Projects: Teamwork makes the dream work

Posted on 23 March 2020 by Caitlin Jenkins

Some objects that arrive at the university lab are too large or complex for a single person to work on, so their responsibility is given to a ‘project manager’, usually a final-year undergraduate or master’s student. The manager devises a treatment strategy to be carried out with the assistance of a small team. Many of
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Frequently Asked Questions in Taxidermy

Posted on 12 March 2020 by Ella Berry

I recently helped out at the National Museum of Wales’ (NMW) After Dark event held on the 19th of February. It was a really fun event, with a great turnout of 852 curious visitors coming to peruse the halls. The art conservators and the natural history conservators collaborated to show how natural history specimens could
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P.S. We love you

Posted on 14 February 2020 by Caitlin Jenkins

Cardiff students work with a wide variety of objects at the university lab, on placements or other volunteering opportunities. It’s difficult to pick a favourite object – like choosing a favourite child! But in the spirit of Valentine’s Day, we’ve asked six students to tell us about a special object that they’ve loved working with.
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Tubey or not tubey, that is the question…

Posted on 5 February 2020 by Caitlin Jenkins

‘There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.’ (Hamlet, Act 2 Scene 2) Every object has its own story to tell. Some stories are happy, some are tragic, and some are simply a mystery. In this post, I will share details of an unusual object and reflect on my thoughts about
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If It Isn’t Broken, Don’t Fix It – A Critical Review of “New Kintsugi”, a Modern Take on a Traditional Repair Method.

Posted on 29 January 2020 by Cal James

After finding out about the technique of “Kintsugi”, an ancient Japanese technique of repairing ceramics with lacquer and gold powder, I was intrigued. After some further research, including reading Shan-Ying Chen’s previous blog post on the technique from November, I knew I wanted to learn more and at some point try the technique out for
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