Lessons Learned: Textile Conservation - Then and Now

12th North American Textile Conservation Conference

Ottawa, Canada, September 23 - 29, 2019

The twelfth biennial North American Textile Conservation Conference (NATCC) will be held in Ottawa, Canada, and will focus on the theme of “Lessons Learned – Textile Conservation – Then and Now.”The choice of the topic was inspired by NATCC’s return to the City of Ottawa, venue of our first conference in 1997. Analytical studies, conservation protocols, treatments, exhibitiondisplays, and materials and techniques haveevolved during the past 20+ years, often dramatically. We propose to revisit conservation procedures, best practices, collaborations, and other preservation guidelines carried out during the 1980s through the present.

Presentations may include, but are not limited to, evolving conservation protocols and best practices, including those for treatment, storage, travel and display; methodologies for technical analyses, scientific and historical research, collaborations among different stakeholders, and other topics as they relate to the field of textile conservation of tangible and intangible culture. Both successful and unsuccessful “lessons learned” are welcome. Specific cases where past treatments, methodologies, and/or collaborations are contrasted and reassessed according to contemporary needs and approaches, are especially welcome. The following are examples of possible subjects:

  • The aging of treatment, storage or display materials and/or their interaction with the textile or object.
  • How material studies and scientific research have led to new strategies in textile conservation.
  • Changes in the relationships or interactions among indigenous communities, First Nations, other stakeholders, and the museum or related institutions; and  how  these changes have impacted assessments of past and present treatments, storage, travel and exhibition displays.
  • Changes in exhibition procedures and display, especially those that seek to minimize environmental impact or produce cost efficiency, such as new sources of power, illumination, flexible display systems, innovative or recyclable materials and their impact on the works displayed.
  • The impact of a changing climate on collections, especially those brought about by changes in set points for temperature, relative humidity, and sources of illuminance within the museum environment.
  • New approaches to Integrated Pest Management.

Conservators, curators, conservation scientists, art historians, archaeologists, anthropologists, collection managers, designers, preparators and others engaged with these topics are invited to submit proposals for presentations. Collaborations among professions are encouraged.Projects already presentedor published will not be considered and proposed projects must be complete by the end of 2018.  

Abstracts for papers and posters may be submitted in English, French, or Spanish as a Word document (no PDFs).  Abstracts musthave a title, be a maximum of 300 words, and accompanied by ashortauthor(s) biography (100 words maximum). Title, abstract and biography should be included asa single document along with author(s) contact information. Contact information should include: name, postal and email addresses, telephone numbers.Abstracts should not include images or other attachments.

Abstracts must be submitted by May 11, 2018 to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please send a message to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you do not receive prompt confirmation of abstract submittal.

Abstracts will be peer reviewed by the NATCC board. Authors of selected papers and posters will be notified by August 3, 2018.All speakers are required to submit the full publication-ready version of their paper in the language in which it will be presented (English, French, or Spanish) by January 18, 2019.Authors are responsible for obtaining rights and permissions to publish photographs andgraphics

Presentations will be 20 minutes long; there will be time for questions.An advance copy of each oral presentation will be required by September 15, 2019 for purposes of simultaneous translation The papers and posters will be published and distributed at the conference along with printed abstracts..Please email any questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and visit our website for updates at .


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Embellished textiles...

Mexico City, 2017


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