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Collect, Care, Conserve, Curate: The Life of the Art Object

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Permanent Collection
3/10/2017 - 7/23/2017
Organizing institution: The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia
The Fralin Museum of Art has a permanent collection of art objects numbering close to 14,000. Behind-the-scenes stewardship is essential to maintaining accessibility of the collection for study, research, and teaching. Museum staff collaborate with specialist conservators, art historians, and materials scientists to maintain diversified collections care. This interdisciplinary process includes investigation into the creation and history of the art, thereby unraveling inherent and environmental-related impacts of deterioration and change during the life of the art object.

This exhibition encompasses objects ranging from first-century Roman glass through twenty-first-century art, including a seventeenth-century Dutch portrait painting on panel with a hidden image. The majority of the selected objects have never been on view publicly, and present a rare opportunity for visitors to The Fralin. This multi-cultural exhibition is designed to encourage museum goers to participate in the methodology of visual analysis in the detection of materials, fabrication, deterioration, damage, and histories of previous repairs in order to discover the story of the object.


Exhibition Objects (42)


Exhibition Images (26)



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