Houston Methodist Hospital gratefully received our donation

The Conservation Department at the MFAH (Museum of Fine Arts Houston) joined with TX-CERA to donate much needed Personal Protective Equipment to health care workers at Houston Methodist Hospital today.

Front line care givers struggling to keep themselves safe while they provide critical support for our community gratefully received a donation of

  • 280 N95 masks
  • 24 boxes of disposable gloves
  • 120 safety googles

Credit goes to both the Board of TX-CERA and staff at the MFAH who acknowledge the importance of supporting those making a difference in times of need.

We invite other organizations that are not currently using their PPE to consider donating their inventory to the local hospitals. We are in this together.

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Workshop Postponed

In light of the worldwide response to the COVID-19 virus and the possibility of TAMU restricting gatherings on their campus, the TX-CERA Board has made the decision to

postpone till Fall 2020 our April 17th workshop
Recovery and Salvage of Fire Damaged Cultural Collections.”  

We regret this change in planning, but we think it’s necessary to support efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19 and to ensure the health and safety of our participants, volunteers, and their communities.

Date will be announced in the next months.

Thank you for your understanding

Workshop Postponed: Recovery & Salvage of Fire Damaged Cultural Collections

The workshop Recovery and Salvage of Fire Damaged Cultural Collections is to be held at Texas A&M on Friday, April 17, 2020, following the Annual Meeting of the (TAM) Texas Association of Museums.
Registration is limited to approximately 30-35 people.

The cost is $45 ($35 for AIC members). Lunch is included with the registration.
If you’d like to receive the registration form, please email tx.cera@gmail.com

WORKSHOP – Sponsored by TX_CERA / Texas Collection Emergency Response Alliance
TITLE: Recovery and Salvage of Fire Damaged Cultural Collections
DATE: Friday, April 17, 2020 – Postponed to Fall 2020 (date to be announced)
LOCATION: Texas A&M, Evans Library Annex, 400 Spence St, College Station, TX 77843

PROGRAM:
8:30 – 9:00 – Arrival
9:00 – 9:30 – Welcome and Introduction Welcome – Ian Muise – Preservation Librarian, Texas A&M University Intro to TX-CERA – Steve Pine, Senior Conservator of Decorative Arts, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
9:30 – 10:05 – Speaker — Assessing a Fire Scene from a “First Responder’s Point of View”, TBD Fire Investigator at College Station Fire Department
10:05 – 10:45 – Speaker – Assessing a Fire Scene from a “Restoration Company’s Point of View”, Kirk Lively, Director, Technical Services at BELFOR Ltd
10: 45 – 11:00 – BREAK
11:00 – 11:30 – Speaker – Assessing a Fire Scene from an “Art Conservator’s Point of View”, Olivia Primanis, Book Conservator, Austin
11:30 – 12:00 – Speaker – “PPE and How to Protect Yourself While Caring Your Collection”, Anne McGowan-Schooler, Instructional Professor, Department of Health and Kinesiology and Construction Science, College of Education and Human Development and College of Architecture, Texas A&M University
12:00 – 12:45 – Lunch – Boxed Lunch Provided
12:45 – 2:00 – Speaker – “What Do I Do Now? Tips on Triaging Your Collection”, Session lead by Melanie Sanford, Textile Conservator, Conserving Threads, Dallas
Objects -Steve Pine, Senior Conservator of Decorative Arts, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
Books, Archives & Art On Paper – Olivia Primanis, Book Conservator, Austin
Media Audio & Video Tapes, Computer Tapes Floppy Disks CDS & DVDS and Data Protection- Ian Muise, Preservation Librarian, Texas A&M University
Textiles & Costumes – Melanie Sanford, Textile Conservator, Conserving Threads, Dallas
Paintings – Cristiana Ginatta, Painting Conservator, Helen A Houp Fine Art Conservation, Dallas
Photographs – Heather Brown and Amber Kehoe, Photograph Conservators, Harry Ransom Center, UT, Austin
2:00 – 2:15 Walk to Outside Cover Concourse 2:15 – 3:00 – Hands on Demonstrations – Outside
3:30- 4:00 – BREAK
4:00 – 4:30 – Speaker- “Fires Happens. Be Prepared: Basic Steps to Prepare Your Institution In The Event Of An Emergency”, Cristiana Ginatta, Painting Conservator, Helen A Houp Fine Art Conservation, Dallas
4:30 – 5:00 – Tour of the TAMU Preservation Annex Labs

**TX-CERA Gmail tx.cera@gmail.com  

** TX-CERA Facebook page  https://www.facebook.com/groups/563918443670111/

Workshop Postponed: Recovery and Salvage of Fire Damaged Cultural Collections

Registration is now open for the all-day workshop
Recovery and Salvage of Fire Damaged Cultural Collections

This is a TX-CERA (Texas Collection Emergency Response Alliance) lead event with speakers from various industries and a hands-on demonstration in the afternoon.

The workshop will be held on
Friday, April 17, 2020, 9 AM to 5 PM  – Postponed to Fall 2020 (date to be announced)
at the Evans Library Annex, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas.

With the generous support from the Foundation for Advancement in Conservation (FAIC) and its Development Grant, tickets are $45 ($35 for AIC members). Boxed lunch is provided.

If you would like further information about the workshop or a registration form, please email tx.cera@gmail.com

 

Let’s Talk Mold

There are numerous resources online that provide information and guidance on how to “deal” with mold.

This is a brief synthesis.

Mold grows on organic materials in suitable conditions: relative humidity higher than 65%, oxygen and lack of air circulation, temperatures preferably in the range of 50 – 95°F. Mold decomposes the organic material (something we are usually trying to safe) and produces substances that can cause illnesses and allergic reactions.

During intervention on a mold outbreak:

  • make sure to protect yourself first: wear nitrile gloves and make sure mold does not come into contact with your skin; wash hands after removing gloves; do not eat and drink in an environment where mold is present; wear PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) such as FFP3 dust mask and goggles, up to respirators and body suits in case of large outbreaks;
  • try to identify and address the cause(s) of the mold outbreak;
  • create some air circulation, using fans;
  • use dehumidification equipment to reduce the relative humidity below 65%;
  • use HEPA vacuum to remove mold growth;
  • consult a conservator for appropriate of intervention depending on substrate/artifact.

In case of symptoms such as skin rash or asthma, stop immediately and consult your doctor.

For a list of symptoms, you can consult the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. (2019). Mold Allergy: https://www.aaaai.org/conditions-and-treatments/allergies/mold-allergy

 

PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)

When disaster strikes, fortunately for our communities first responders and volunteers come to the rescue.
As we know from many tragic examples of great heroism and ultimate sacrifice, unfortunately first responders and volunteers are often not sufficiently protected and during an emergency put the safety of their community first, over their own health and safety.

Before responding to an emergency, think about Personal Protective Equipment that will protect you as you are generously helping your community.

The American Institute for Conservation (AIC) has created and maintains a Wiki page dedicated to PPE:
http://www.conservation-wiki.com/wiki/Personal_Protective_Equipment_(PPE)

In particular for protective gloves this page offers a table with the type of glove safe to use to handle different categories of chemicals:
http://www.conservation-wiki.com/wiki/PPE_Chemical_Protective_Material_Selection_Guide

Regarding tight fitting air-purifying respirators, necessary in case of volatile chemicals such as organic solvents, please be aware that you have to undergo a medical check up and an annual respirator fit test to ascertain that using the respirator will not tax your heart and respiratory system and that you are trained to wearing it correctly.
A Conservator’s Guide to Respiratory Protection by Craig E. Colton offers an exhaustive explanation:

http://www.conservation-wiki.com/w/images/c/c3/H%26S_A_Conservator%27s_Guide_to_Respiratory_Protection_2016.pdf

For the masks that filter particulate and dust, make sure to choose N-95 models that filter at least 95% of the particulate. The “duck bill” model is one of the most comfortable to wear.

Thank you for your volunteering!