Buildings surrounding the Sikh temple of Sri Hazur Sahib in western India are being demolished to make way for a new road and visitor centre, claims Gurmeet Rai, director of the Cultural Resource Conservation Initiative in Delhi. October 2008 marks the 300th anniversary of the guruship of the Granth Sahib (the Sikh holy book), and up to three million pilgrims are expected to visit Sri Hazur Sahib in celebration.
A new website has been launched for the Association of North American Graduate Programs in the Conservation of cultural property (ANAGPIC). ANAGPIC was founded in 1984 to bring together information from 6 postgraduate training courses in North America. It also organises an annual conference for students from all of these courses, and publishes the conference papers on its website.
A huge model of Sir Edwin Lutyens' proposed design for Liverpool's Roman Catholic cathedral has gone on display in the Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool. The model was conserved at the National Conservation Centre in Liverpool between 1992 and 2005. The conservation of the model has been documented in a film which is also on display in the Walker Gallery.
UK environmentalists, eco-architects and conservation staff met last Thursday to discuss how to reconcile environmentally-friendly practices with conservation demands within culturally-sensitive landscapes.
The Institute for War and Peace Reporting has claimed that cultural property in Tajikistan is "vulnerable to thieves, damp and bookworms". The IWPR reports Tajik museum staff as saying that they lack the money or resources to run museums efficiently, and that damp basement storage areas and a lack of conservation facilities have caused collections to decay rapidly.
At the IIC annual general meeting in London on January 19 2007, an honorary IIC fellowship was awarded to Dr Rudolph van Asperen de Boer. The text of the IIC President's presentation introduction to Dr van Asperen de Boer follows below:
The advancements in analytical techniques applied to works of art promise to be significant in our new century... and perhaps that promise will be realized. We can only hope that the progress will be as astonishing as it was in the 20th century, when we realized an enormous shift in the scope of our vision.
The Natural History Museum (NHM) in London has temporarily halted scientific tests on the bones of 18 Tasmanian aboriginals in its collection following an injunction brought by representatives of the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre (TAC).
The new director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp claimed recently that the site was in urgent need of conservation.
The camp buildings are under threat from flooding and erosion, and many of the artefacts on the site are being damaged by mould, insect activity or poor environmental conditions. There is also some loss or damage from the camp's 1 million annual visitors.
It is becoming more common for conservators and museums to publish blogs which keep the general public and fellow professionals informed about their day-to-day work, interests, thoughts and concerns.
These blogs vary widely. Some of them are simple and updated infrequently, while others are huge team efforts, slickly presented and full of information. Some of these blogs are related to a particular project; others are long-term affairs. All of them provide a fascinating picture of the everyday concerns of conservators and cultural heritage professionals around the world, however.