Welcome to the Art Conservation Blog of the Amon Carter Museum of American Art

sylvie_1.jpgAs an introduction, today’s topic is the Art Conservation Lab itself; an approximately 1200 ft2 space equipped with large work tables, a fume hood to protect conservators from solvents, two microscopes with imaging capabilities, an oven for material testing, a large bathing sink with light bleaching capabilities, ultraviolet light analytical equipment, and a spectrophotometer for monitoring any changes in color and density potentially experienced by works of art.

The lab is staffed by two art conservators, Sylvie Pénichon, Conservator of Photographs, and Jodie Utter, Conservator of Works on Paper. In addition, Tatiana Cole has recently joined the team as a Fellow in Photographs Conservation, and will be at the museum for the next two years.

Sylvie Pénichon (imaged above) has a background in photography, and received her master’s degree in Art Conservation and Art History from New York University. Her research interests have focused largely on color photography, and she has published extensively and lectured internationally on the topic. Pénichon’s latest project, an all-encompassing Getty Publication on color photography, is slated for release in the fall of ’13.

jodie.jpgJodie Utter (imaged left) has a background in marine biology, chemistry, and art, and received her master’s degree in Art Conservation from the University of Delaware. Her pre and post-graduate work focused on the application of Asian conservation approaches to Western art. Most recently, Utter has conducted a technical study of watercolor techniques and materials used by Charles M. Russell. Her findings will be included in the definitive book on Russell’s watercolor paintings, scheduled for publication in the winter of ‘13.

Tatiana Cole (imaged below) has a background in biology and chemistry, and received her master’s degree in Art Conservation also from the University of Delaware. Her interests as a graduate student lay in photography, modern materials, and new approaches to preserving contemporary, installation, and time-based media art. Over the last year, Tatiana has been studying staining of contemporary platinum prints, and the materials and methods used by platinum master printers for the past 20 years.


With a full exhibition schedule ahead in 2013, stay tuned for more conservation related blog posts. They will shine light on the work we do here as we ensure the preservation of ACMAA’s great collection, and contribute to the intellectual advancement of the museum and broader field of art conservation.