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Textile conservator, Gwen Spicer of Spicer Art Conservation at work

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Magnetic Mounting Systems for Museums and Cultural Institutions Receives Major Review

Since the publication of Gwen's book, Magnetic Mounting Systems for Museums and Cultural Institutions, early last year, more than 350 copies have sold worldwide, including to 26 countries in addition to the US on 6 of the 7 continents. Among the purchasers are 145 museums and galleries, and 69 libraries. The book was also one of the recipients of the 2019 Awards for Excellence from the Greater Hudson Heritage Network.

2019 GHHN Award for Excellence
(Photo Credit: K.Sclafani, GHHN)

In 2019, Gwen spoke to six groups in the U.S., Canada, and Europe about magnetic systems, advocating for their use in a variety of applications.

Gwen presenting at an International Conference

In her review of Gwen's book, conservator Kloe Rumsey wrote in the December 2019 issue of News in Conservation,
"A book dedicated to the use of magnets for the mounting and display of museum objects has been eagerly awaited by the global conservation community for years....There has been significant buzz in the profession since we began to hear news of a book, and as we cross our collective fingers that it's as good as we want it to be, I'm happy to say that I think it is."
Rumsey calls out Gwen's attention to describing the scientific details of magnets, defining terms and theories within the body of the text for easy reference, illustrating the science and the systems with diagrams and figures, for drawing on case studies that offer "...tips, hacks and things to bear in mind when developing our own systems," and for providing useful tools for working with magnets.

The Triboelectric Series

Two- and Three-Part Magnetic Systems

As Rumsey concludes, "By producing this book, Gwen Spicer has introduced the wider community to these methods in accessible format, and we can now develop and grow in what we can achieve with it."
This isn't an instruction manual for a quick glance; it's worth spending time with this book to really be able to make creative decisions. While doing so might take longer than reading a set of instructions, we all know the benefits of working in this way for a varied collection. Some might say there's too much science, but this book provides all the information, and it's up to the readers to decide what they need to take away from it to achieve their own goals.
Order Magnetic Mounting Systems for Museums and Cultural Institutions

Magnetic Mounting Systems for Museums and Cultural Institutions for Sale at a Conference
(Photo Credit: K.Sclafani, GHHN)

Ms. Rumsey's review appeared in the December 2019 issue (75) of News in Conservation, the newsletter of the International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works.

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