Dr Vincent Daniels, a fellow of IIC, has been awarded the UK Royal Warrant Holders Association's 2007 Plowden Medal. According to the official citation, he has been awarded the medal "for his long and exceptional contribution to the development of understanding in conservation, the excellence of his dedicated research and his ready engagement with the practitioners of the conservation profession".
Garry Thomson CBE, an honorary fellow of IIC and its president from 1983 to 1986, died peacefully at his home in the UK on 23 May 2007. Garry Thomson was Scientific Adviser to the Trustees and head of the Scientific Department at the National Gallery, London from 1960 until his retirement in 1985. Garry is perhaps best known for his immensely influential, yet readable, book The Museum Environment, first published in 1978 and revised in 1985, which has become indispensable for conservators and curators throughout the world.
One of London's most famous tourist attractions, the tea clipper Cutty Sark, has been devastated in a fire this morning. Firefighters are still putting out the flames and believe that the fire was started deliberately.
UK conservators could face a fine or a 6-month jail sentence for possession of an offensive weapon if proposed legislation to ban Japanese swords is passed. Japanese art swords, popularly known as "samurai swords", are the subject of a proposed amendment to the Criminal Justice Act. The swords would be classed as "offensive weapons" if the amendment were accepted, and their importation, possession and sale within the UK would become illegal.
Researchers in Germany have unveiled a massive computer-aided project to reconstruct millions of confidential files which were shredded by the East German secret police at the end of the Cold War. After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, Stasi officers were ordered to destroy incriminating documents relating to the Stasi's operations. Many of these documents were burnt, but others were hurriedly shredded or torn into pieces. The West German police later recovered 16,000 sacks of paper, containing 600 million fragments from 45 million documents.
An Israeli archaeologist claims to have found the tomb of King Herod, the Roman-appointed ruler of Judea at the time of Jesus' birth. According to the Bible, Herod was responsible for the Massacre of the Innocents, when all male children under 2 years old were killed.
A message from Lisa Young about the recent fire in the Georgetown public library:
The USS Monitor Center, part of the Mariners' Museum, has opened in Newport News, Virginia. The Mariners' Museum won the 2006 IIC Keck award for its project to conserve the USS Monitor.
The Denver Art Museum (DAM) announced recently that it had exceeded its aim of raising $1.5 million towards a conservation endowment in the museum. The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation had already promised the DAM $1.5 million if the museum would match the sum from its own fundraising efforts. This task was completed in December 2006, and the endowment will be used to secure conservation posts and run the collections centre in the DAM's new Daniel Libeskind-designed Frederic C. Hamilton Building, which opened last year.
The Directory Board of the Conservation Committee of the International Council of Museums, ICOM-CC, wishes to announce that the call for hosting the Triennial Meeting of ICOM-CC in 2011 is now available at www.icom-cc.icom.museum. The deadline for receiving bids is 1 September 2007. A decision on the final selection must be expected in the first half of 2008. The Board wishes to thank candidates for their commitment and investment.