Anglo-Saxon CSI: Sittingbourne

January 9, 2010, 7:13 pm
Filed under: Community


Sustainability and green issues are becoming a major issue within the cultural heritage sector, affecting both conservators and museums. These issues may concern such things as light bulbs in museum display cases or finding new ways of carrying out conservation treatments, and involving the public to an increased degree.  The CSI: lab falls into the latter.

Volunteer John showing a school visitor what he is working on

The empty shop before setting up

The majority of the equipment that you see in the lab has been donated by museums, organisations, people and past exhibitions.  Some is Dana’s own, and the other equipment and materials have been bought using whatever budget  is available.

Some of the crates from Opus Sacrum

Mechanical cleaning work table in the CSI: lab

The Barbara Piasecka Johnson Foundation has donated wall panels, display stands, and various other equipment and materials from the Opus Sacrum exhibition held in Warsaw in 1990.  The brown suede wall panels once held paintings by the likes of Carravagio, Da Vinci, Bellini and Boticelli, but now hold images and information about what we are working on.  Some have also been used as work tables in the lab for mechanical cleaning, air abrasion and packaging.

Display panels in the lab

Full size copies of some of the paintings were included in some of the crates that were unpacked.  These have been reused where possible to create some of the wall displays of the grave plans.

Grave plans on display aid the conservators when cleaning objects

The original airport x-ray machine was also donated from this exhibition.  Unfortunately, after a major struggle getting it into the lab, it does not work and the company that made it has ceased business.  We aim to recycle this at the end of the project.  We have luckily been donated another airport x-ray machine by Rapiscan.

Airport x-ray machine provided by Rapiscan

Although the images displayed on the screen are a little small for use in archaeological conservation, they are extremely helpful and provide a quick way of examining an object if we are unsure of something, as well as creating a fun attraction for visitors.

The Museum of London has also kindly donated a lot of equipment to the project, as well as originally putting us in touch with the Barbara Piasecka Johnson Foundation.  Microscopes, lab chairs and other resources are being reused and recycled during this project.

Air abrasive machines in the CSI: lab

Other equipment and resources have been lent or bought by CAT and SHM using the budget provided.  The remaining substantial amount is from Dana Goodburn-Brown’s own lab, which goes to show her commitment to the success of the CSI: lab and future projects of this type.

Cutting the ribbon of CSI: Sittingbourne

1 Comment so far
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It is great to see equipment being reused, perhaps someone should run a conservation freecycle scheme.

Comment by Jane

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