Plastics: Looking at the Future and Learning from the Past

Brenda Keneghan, Louise Egan (eds)

UK Price: £50.00 US Price: $90.00

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ISBN: 9781904982432
Binding: Paperback
Dimensions: 297 x 210 mm
Pages: 184
Illustrations: 96 colour, 41 halftone

Over the course of the past 150 years, the development and use of artificial plastics has burgeoned. Plastics are now ubiquitous and unavoidable, from the plastic bag and other items with functional uses - such as household, office, electrical appliances and clothing - to works of art including sculpture, tapestries etc. The myriad of different plastic-based materials and the ways in which they have been treated before, during and after manufacture can leave the conservator, artist and collections manager bewildered as to their identification and hence appropriate treatment and prognosis for any particular object.

This volume of papers from a conference held at the Victoria and Albert Museum is intended as a 'marker in the sand', a record of current perceptions and considerations of plastics within museum collections - their importance and problems (inter alia of insurance, pollution, display, decay and conservation).

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...this collection of papers demonstrates the many problems we continue to face in addressing the preservation of plastics but shows that considerable progress has been made in the field. Perhaps most importantly, the papers identify new topics of research and new approaches, which give reason to be optimistic for the future of plastics as part of our cultural heritage.
Studies in Conservation 54(3) (2009) 192-193