Conservation encompasses all those actions taken toward the long-term preservation of cultural heritage. Activities include examination, documentation, treatment, and preventive care, supported by research and education.
Preserving cultural heritage is essential, but it also presents complex challenges. Conservators embrace these challenges with passion, commitment and dedication.
What is a Conservator?
- Saves our cultural heritage physically. They are unique in the wider preservation field for the particular expert hands-on technical and decision-making skills they bring to preserving and caring for and our tangible history.
- Trains in a graduate conservation program or sometimes a lengthy apprenticeship with more experienced senior colleagues. While they take many paths to becoming a conservator, they all have extensive training in art history, science, studio art, and related fields.
- Specializes in a particular kind of material. Given the increasingly technical nature of modern conservation, they often focus on a specific type of material called their “specialty,” becoming experts in that subject.
- Adheres to a strict ethical practice in their work. They assume certain obligations to cultural heritage, its stewards, the profession, and society as a whole. In much of what they do, they rely on our Code of Ethics as their guide.
- Works in a variety of settings like cultural institutions, research labs, and private practices and has various titles and responsibilities.
- Hears their job called many different things, such as “art restorer” or “art doctor.” Conservator is the preferred term in the United States. Professionals in other countries do identify as “art restorers,” but this is often due to differences in language. In French, for example, conservateur actually means curator, and restaurateur means “conservator.” “Conservationists” are typically the professionals who focus on environmental conservation.
Those who care for cultural heritage use special terminology, which we have currently defined as follows:
Conservation: The profession devoted to the preservation of cultural property for the future. Conservation activities include examination, documentation, treatment, and preventive care, supported by research and education.
Conservator: A professional whose primary occupation is the practice of conservation and who, through specialized education, knowledge, training, and experience, formulates and implements all the activities of conservation in accordance with an ethical code such as the AIC Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice.
Preservation: The protection of cultural property through activities that minimize chemical and physical deterioration and damage and that prevent loss of informational content. The primary goal of preservation is to prolong the existence of cultural property.
Treatment: The deliberate alteration of the chemical and/or physical aspects of cultural property, aimed primarily at prolonging its existence. Treatment may consist of stabilization and/or restoration.
Examination: The investigation of the structure, materials, and condition of cultural property including the identification of the extent and causes of alteration and deterioration.
Documentation:The recording in a permanent format of information derived from conservation activities.
Stabilization: Treatment procedures intended to maintain the integrity of cultural property and to minimize deterioration.
Restoration: Treatment procedures intended to return cultural property to a known or assumed state, often through the addition of non-original material.
Preventive Care (also referred to as preventive conservation): The mitigation of deterioration and damage to cultural property through the formulation and implementation of policies and procedures for the following: appropriate environmental conditions; handling and maintenance procedures for storage, exhibition, packing, transport, and use; integrated pest management; emergency preparedness and response; and reformatting/duplication.
Cultural Property: Objects, collections, specimens, structures, or sites identified as having artistic, historic, scientific, religious, or social significance.
Conservation Administrator: A professional with substantial knowledge of conservation who is responsible for the administrative aspects and implementation of conservation activities in accordance with an ethical code such as the AIC Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice.
Conservation Educator: A professional with substantial knowledge and experience in the theory and techniques of conservation whose primary occupation is to teach the principles, methodology, and/or technical aspects of the profession in accordance with an ethical code such as the AIC Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice.
Conservation Scientist: A professional scientist whose primary focus is the application of specialized knowledge and skills to support the activities of conservation in accordance with an ethical code such as the AIC Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice.
Conservation Technician: An individual who is trained and experienced in specific conservation treatment activities and who works in conjunction with or under the supervision of a conservator. A conservation technician may also be trained and experienced in specific preventive care activities.
Collections Care Specialist: An individual who is trained and experienced in specific preventive care activities and who works in conjunction with or under the supervision of a conservator.
Conservators specialize in one or two areas of conservation. These are common specializations:
Objects, structures, and sites that constitute the archaeological record
Immovable properties such as buildings, monuments, and outdoor sculpture
- Book and Paper
Paper materials including art on paper, books, manuscripts, and library material
- Electronic Media
Conservation of artworks and cultural heritage employing durational, digital, electronic media, and 20th and 21st century technologies
Archaeological and cultural materials from indigenous communities, decorative arts, and sculpture
Paintings in oil, acrylic, or mixed media and their supports, coatings and varnishes
- Photographic Materials
Media in film and composite objects like paper prints and albums
- Preventive Conservation
Assessing and managing deterioration risks for all collection types
Objects include carpets, tapestries, clothing, upholstered furniture, fiber art, and more
- Wooden Artifacts
Ethnographic carvings, furniture, upholstery, frames, and veneer / marquetry / boulle
Biodiversity Conservation Definition
“Biodiversity is protection, restoration, and management to generate long-term benefits for current and future generations.” “The whole of genes, species, including ecosystems in a specified area,” according to another definition.
Conservation of Biodiversity
The protection, maintenance, and management of ecosystems and natural habitats and ensuring that they have been healthy and functional are all part of biodiversity conservation.
The following are the three primary goals of Biodiversity Conservation:
- To safeguard and preserve the diversity of species.
- To guarantee that species and ecosystems are managed sustainably.
- Ecological processes and life support systems are prevented and restored.
Types of Conservation with Examples
There are four types of conservation
- Environmental Conservation
- Animal conservation
- Marine Conservation
- Human Conservation
Environmental conservation protects the natural environment to prevent it from deteriorating due to human activities, including unsustainable agriculture, deforestation, and fossil fuels.
Protecting ecosystems and surroundings to safeguard the animals that reside there is known as animal conservation. With our planet witnessing its sixth major extinction catastrophe in the 3.6 billion years since life has existed on it, the value of animal conservation is enormous.
The preservation or protection of ecosystems in oceans and seas via conscious management to minimise overfishing of natural resources is known as marine conservation or ocean conservation. Marine conservation is based on research into aquatic plants and creatures and ecosystem functions. It is motivated by a reaction to the environment’s manifested negative consequences, like species extinction, habitat degradation, and changes in ecosystem functions. It focuses on limiting human-caused marine ecosystem degradation, rebuilding damaged ecosystems, and protecting vulnerable marine species and ecosystems.
Conservation strives to enable humans to make appropriate use of nature, such as hunting, logging, or mining, whereas preservation aims to protect wildlife from human use. The way the United States handles its public lands exemplifies this distinction. Conservation work is vital for various reasons, one of which is its impact on human health, both in terms of controlling the spread of new diseases and manufacturing medicines that we rely on. Animal habitats in the wild act as a deterrent. It keeps new infectious diseases from spreading from animals to people.
What are the Three Types of Resource Conservation?
Conservation refers to the preservation of natural resources. Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle are the three “R’s” for conserving natural resources. Now you know what are three types of resource conservation, let’s look at them in detail –
Reduce: The best hierarchy relies on the concept of limiting what is generated and consumed. The argument is straightforward: if there is less garbage, there is less rubbish to recycle and reuse.
Here are a few simple ideas of how to limit the number of things you have:-
- Purchase fewer items from the market. For example, if you need one water bottle at a time, you should only buy one and not more as this will contribute to pollution.
- Reduce your purchases of polythene, disposal, and other items, and instead purchase items that are easy to dispose of in the environment without harming it.
Reuse: The activity, practise, or rule of reusing something, whether for its original purpose or to perform a different function, is known as reuse. It should be distinguished from recycling, which is dismantling used objects to obtain raw materials to produce new ones. The most significant aspect of the three Rs is reuse. We can’t keep our ecosystem if we don’t reuse it.
Reuse can be seen in the following ways:
- Reuse and save leftover wrapping paper for next year.
- Newspapers, fascinating magazines, and other paper goods can be reused as wrapping paper or to create artwork.
- Donate an old book, copy, art books, and other items to a library, your recycling centre, or a school instead of throwing them away! They can reuse it, and you will also donate it to any underprivileged youngsters who might benefit from it.
Recycle: Transforming waste or old resources into new or fresh materials and products is recycling. Recycling can help prevent the waste of potentially usable resources (or, to put it another way, produce new ones from old), minimise the amount of waste raw materials, or reduce energy usage, air pollution, and water pollution. Recycling is the third step in the “Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle” waste hierarchy, and it appears to be a critical component for everyday usable items in modern trash reduction.
The following are some examples of Recycle:
- Your crayons must be recycled.
- You can also recycle your water bottles, cold beverage bottles, and other containers.
- Paperboards can be recycled as well.
Although humans utilise most biodiversity resources, their primary obligation is to conserve and safeguard biodiversity to protect the planet. The diversity of species, the ecosystem, the environment, and the long-term viability of life on Earth are all crucial factors. To establish a more friendly relationship between society and its environment, timely preparation for the changes that human activities, including competition over resource usage, may bring about, should be made to reduce potential conflicts. I hope now you got all the necessary information about types of conservation.