December 17, 2010

‘Life without air conditioning?’

On 10 December 2010, the University Museums Group organised a seminar ‘Life Without Air Conditioning?’ at the University of Cambridge, which involved over 100 museum and gallery professionals, including senior figures in conservation and collections care in national museums and galleries, university museums and galleries, universities and consultants. The seminar was aimed at reviewing the current evidence provided by conservation science on the appropriate standards for the exhibition, loan and storage of museum and gallery objects. This is because in order to achieve current standards, it is necessary to specify the installation of air conditioning in all galleries which receive loans, which is undesirable at a time when we are more concerned about energy costs and the environment.

The papers and discussions at the seminar reviewed research over the last 15 years and recent discussions through the Bizot group and others (to download presentations see ‘Case Studies’).  At the conclusion the attached declaration was made and approved by all participants (save one abstention).   UMG seminar declaration Dec 2010

Participants agreed that the declaration should be circulated for comment and that other organisations should be invited to adopt it and implement it if they see fit.

Please email any comments to Nick Merriman, Chair of the University Museums Group, at nick.merriman@manchester.ac.uk by 1 February 2011.