Were you one of the many visitors who were welcomed to Aberdeen Treasure Hub Museum Centre on Doors Open Day earlier this month?
This purpose-built storage facility houses Aberdeen’s vast and varied collections of decorative art, costume, painting, sculpture and objects from the city’s rich local and industrial past and present.
These collections are looked after by Aberdeen Art Gallery & Museums on behalf of the people of Aberdeen. They belong to every person in the city.
Over the past months the treasure hub has been a hive of activity as it’s where we’ve been busy preparing works for the new displays at Aberdeen Art Gallery (re-opening on Saturday November 2). Here are just some of the jobs we’ve been doing at the Hub.
Condition checking and conservation
We checked the condition of the historic objects to identify and address any conservation needs. We looked to see whether artefacts would benefit from non-invasive cleaning then used various preservation tools to clean them. Here you can see decorative art curator Morna Annandale using a soft goat’s hair brush to dust a sculpture, and a conservator increasing protection for one of our paintings.
It’s important to have high-resolution images of Aberdeen’s historic collections. Not only do these photos provide and important record of an object and its condition, they’re also used for publicity, research, inspiration for shop products and the catalogue available on our website. We also need them for the many digital interactives you’ll find around the art gallery when it reopens. We can’t wait to play.
Mounting and Framing
Some of the works on paper going into the art gallery have been mounted to increase protection and enhance presentation. Here you can see an artwork being mounted on acid-free archival board. Several works on paper will be housed in drawers, others will hung on the walls and our exhibition officers made new frames in the workshop at the Treasure Hub.
Careful packing was essential for the safety of objects during transit to the gallery. We used a wide range of packing materials, including acid-free tissue paper, inert foam and boxes, cotton tape, bubble wrap, polythene sheeting, wooden crates and travel frames. Travel frames are used for paintings with ornate gilt frames as the intricate sections have a greater risk of breaking if soft-wrapped.
A huge amount of work has gone into preparing these objects for display and we’re looking forward to sharing these treasures with you when we re-open on November 2.