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B. Keneghan and L. Egan: Plastics - Looking at the Future

Artikel Nr.: 992701

Published 2008, paperback, 184 pages, 96 colour, 41 half tones illustrations




 

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B. Keneghan and L. Egan: Plastics - Looking at the Future

Published 2008, paperback, 184 pages, 96 colour, 41 half tones illustrations

This volume of postprints of 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. Artists concepts of plastic as a medium, and their views of ageing and decay, challenge museum ethics. The dichotomy between an artist’s intent and engagement with their contemporary culture and longevity has resulted in many different resolutions - from the display of original (decayed) materials to recording and recreating di- gital images of the original to the creation of aesthetically interpretable replicas. The balance between using and preserving ‘plastic’ artwork is a fine and delicate line of compromise. The complex enigma of how to identify from which (of the many) synthetic polymers, the mass-produced ‘plastic objects’ within our collections are formed, remains, as yet, unsolved. Instead, through experience, observation and research, museums are developing collecting policies, recording techniques and preservation strategies which take pragmatic and utilitarian approaches, differentiating between stable and unstable plastics on the grounds of age, colour, design etc. Whilst generic under- standing of decay mechanisms are becoming more fully understood, there has been limited success in creating the tight environmental controls needed to extend the longevity of plastic-based materials.
 

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