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Subject: Insect infestation in wooden icon

Insect infestation in wooden icon

From: Bonnie Baskin <bonnieasia<-a>
Date: Sunday, June 8, 2008
Anne Lane <alane [at] charlottemuseum__org> writes

>I received a heads-up today that I will be receiving a call
>concerning a possible insect infestation in a wooden icon. I am
>assuming it is painted on wood, possibly with gold leaf. I have no
>idea about its age, country of origin, etc. My question concerns the
>two major methods of treating insect problems that I am aware of,
>freezing and anoxia.

Another alternative is heat treatment, which was originally
developed by Tom Strang at the Canadian Conservation Institute and
has been used successfully in various forms around the world,
including the electrically heated rooms created by English Heritage.
In one form, solarization, which I've used numerous times with
gilded polychrome art works, objects are wrapped in an absorbent
cotton cloth, sealed in black plastic, and placed in sunlight for a
period of time calculated to enable the heat built up within the
black plastic to penetrate the entire thickness of the objects and
kill all insect phases from eggs to adults. There are more details,
which I will be happy to give you, but these are the main features.
Solarizations usually last two to eight hours.  They are quick and
easy.  They are effective.  They are almost cost-free.  Done
correctly, they cause no damage or disruption to objects.

Bonnie Baskin
Objects conservator
Oakland, CA

                  Conservation DistList Instance 21:65
                   Distributed: Sunday, June 15, 2008
                       Message Id: cdl-21-65-007
Received on Sunday, 8 June, 2008

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