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Project

Category

Partner project
Collaborative project

Start

2019

Status

Active

INTERVIEWS IN CONSERVATION RESEARCH

Museums and heritage institutions are constantly looking for new and sustainable methods for the conservation of our cultural heritage. Yet, personal testimonies of people who have influenced the lives of cultural heritage objects are rarely recorded and archived, whereas these are crucial for research into an artwork’s life. What happened during the restoration of Rembrandt’s Night Watch (1642) in 1975-76? Or with Karel Appel’s wall painting in the former restaurant of the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam (1956)? What is the story behind Alessandro Mendini’s chest of drawers Nigritella Nigra (1993)? Although museums and heritage institutions are constantly looking for new and sustainable methods for the conservation of our cultural heritage, personal testimonies are rarely formally recorded and archived, whereas these are crucial for research into an artwork’s life. For contemporary art conservation, a lot of attention has been paid to interviewing artists and the dynamics of artworks in collections. However, most institutions are barely equipped to use interviews in conservation research in a sustainable and methodologically sound way. This project aims for an integral approach in using of oral history for research in art conservation in a responsible way, using case studies from the Rijksmuseum and the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands. The aim is to design an overarching model for museums, heritage institutions and conservators in the field that seeks to reflect the use of interviews as a dynamic process, as a living archive including space for user interpretations, so that our insight can be deepened and knowledge is not lost, but rather enriched.

 

PROJECT LEADER
  • dr. Sanneke Stigter (University of Amsterdam)
PROJECT TEAM
  • dr. Esther van Duijn (Rijksmuseum)
  • drs. Bernice Crijns (Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands)
PARTICIPATING INSTITUTIONS
  • University of Amsterdam
  • Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands
  • Rijksmuseum

 

RESULTS

With a total of over 25 datasets safely stored with DANS in the Netherlands, 4 international presentations, 5+ publications, and a supportive network to continue and expand the infrastructure, the project can be considered successful. A new Oral History series has started in the Dutch journal on materials in art and design kM, with six articles published until this day and more on the way. In addition, a liaison has been established with the FAIC Oral History Project that has listed the Dutch conservator interviews conducted and / or archived as part of the project.

Despite the difficulties we encountered with data repository with a system that is designed for data managers of traditional oral history projects including many interviews on one subject, it was confirmed by all members of our last expert meeting that DANS is the right place for oral history material to be stored sustainably and disclosed for research in the Netherlands. However, their infrastructure and workflow do not suit the needs of the domain of research in the visual arts. Most interviews are conducted around specific artworks, on the occasion of an exhibition or a publication, as part of an acquisition procedure or to inform conservation. A quick and efficient way to archive orally retrieved information would be highly beneficial to support workflow and facilitate open science. We have organised various expert meetings and network sessions to seek for improvement and establish what is needed to proceed with follow-up research to design and build the best infrastructure available for museums and institutions working with oral history and art collections. A prolonged co-operation with the project partners is supported in a newly established network including the required technical expertise. The NICAS Oral History Initiative is ongoing, as interviews in conservation research are conducted every day.

 

 

NEWS

 

WEBSITES

 

PUBLICATIONS

Oral History series in kM: vakinformatie voor beeldende kunstenaars en restauratoren:

 

LECTURES

 

DATASETS
  1. Crijns, Drs. B.E. (Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed) (2017): Interview Vishwa Mehra on the vault paintings in Naarden. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-xc9-u77m
  2. Crijns, Drs. B.E. (Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed) (2017): Interview Willem Haakma Wagenaar. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-x2e-hmb2
  3. Crijns, Drs. B.E. (Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed) (2017): Interview Peter Dijkman over de gewelfschilderingen in Naarden. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-2bx-v5cu
  4. Duijn, Dr. E.E. van (Rijksmuseum Amsterdam); Hendriks, Prof. dr. E. (Universiteit van Amsterdam) (2017): Interview Anne van Grevenstein. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-2×9-pwma
  5. Duijn, Dr. E.E. van (Rijksmuseum Amsterdam); Raven, Drs. L. (Rijksmuseum Amsterdam) (2019): Interview Martin Bijl. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-zv9-3z7n 
  6. Janson, MA S.R. (University of Amsterdam); Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2019): Interview Lydia Schouten over Shattered Ghost Stories (I) video. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-xwv-n93s
  7. Janson, MA S.R. (University of Amsterdam); Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2019): Interview Lydia Schouten over Shattered Ghost Stories (I) audio. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-zeq-j8hu
  8. Janson, MA S.R. (University of Amsterdam); Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2019): Interview Lydia Schouten over Shattered Ghost Stories (II) video. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-xen-v7te
  9. Janson, MA S.R. (University of Amsterdam); Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2019): Interview Lydia Schouten over Shattered Ghost Stories (II) audio. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-26j-4h5h
  10. Janson, MA S.R. (University of Amsterdam) (2019): Interview Arthur Vriens over Shattered Ghost Stories. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-zm2-46n9 
  11. Janson, MA S.R. (University of Amsterdam); Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2019): Interview Mirjam Westen over Shattered Ghost Stories. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-xzj-efy7
  12. Kat, Hélène (Rijksmuseum) (1995): Interview Hendrik Plagge. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-zs9-rav4
  13. Mol, Drs. T. (Rijksmuseum); Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2017): Interview Alessandro Mendini. DANS.https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-zhc-ueqe
  14. Sigmond, Mr. PDRes H.M. (Hinke Sigmond Conservering & Restauratie) (2011): Interview Peter Dijkman over het restauratievak. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-z7t-w3kk
  15. Sigmond, Mr. PDRes H.M. (Hinke Sigmond Conservatie & Restauratie) (2011): Interview André Verheij over het restauratievak. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-xuu-ze7h
  16. Sigmond, Mr. PDRes H.M. (Hinke Sigmond Conservering & Restauratie) (2011): Interview Willem Haakma Wagenaar over het restauratievak. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-zvx-ntrs
  17. Sigmond, Mr. PDRes H.M. (Hinke Sigmond Conservering & Restauratie) (2011): Interview Hanspeter Nagtegaal over het restauratievak. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-xpj-9tyf
  18. Sigmond, Mr. PDRes H.M. (Hinke Sigmond Conservering & Restauratie) (2011): Interview Bert Jonker over het restauratievak. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-23c-q7tf  
  19. Sigmond, Mr. PDRes H.M. (Hinke Sigmond) (2011): Interview Rob Bremer over het restauratievak. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-245-dfff
  20. Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2011): Interview Jan Dibbets on The Shortest Day at the Van Abbemuseum. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-xsz-gvu4 
  21. Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2011): Interview Louis Baltussen on The Shortest Day at the Van Abbemuseum. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-xqg-gqnb
  22. Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2011): Interview Annie Fletcher on The Shortest Day at the Van Abbemuseum. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-xmy-qvbx
  23. Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2011): Interview Jan Dibbets over All Shadows… 22 november 2011. DANS.https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-zru-ha3a
  24. Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2012): Interview Jan Dibbets over All Shadows… 7 oktober 2012. DANS.https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-z6w-nr2u
  25. Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2015): Interview Jan Dibbets over All Shadows… 22 augustus 2015. DANS.https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-2×6-m6bf
  26. Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2016): Interview met Bethany de Forest (I). DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-x9d-vqns
  27. Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2016): Interview met Bethany de Forest (II). DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-xs2-5gtj
  28. Stigter, Dr. S. (University of Amsterdam) (2019): Interview Evert Nijland. DANS. https://doi.org/10.17026/dans-zmk-7asd