AIC 2018 Annual Meeting Call for Papers

Tuesday, 29 May, 2018 to Saturday, 2 June, 2018
Friday, 15 September, 2017

AIC 2018 Annual Meeting Call for Papers Open until September 15, 2017

The 46th AIC Annual Meeting will be held in Houston, TX, May 29-June 2, 2018. The theme for the main conference is: "Materials Matters 2018."

Papers are solicited that demonstrate the impact of material studies - or studies of materials - on the conservation profession, including the emergence of innovative treatments, new ways of "looking" and "seeing," shifts in decision-making and desired outcomes, and changes in collection care strategies. Also welcome are explorations of the impact of trending "materiality" studies in related disciplines including archaeology, museum and curatorial fields, and art history among others. Topics can include, but are not limited to: cutting-edge imaging and analysis techniques of materials, new materials having conservation applications, revelations about the meaning and significance of materials within an artist's work, and improved methods of authentication. Four concurrent general session sub-themes have been identified with more to be identified based on the submissions.

To view the subthemes, and to submit an abstract for either the general or a specialty session, please visit the Call for Papers webpage

There will be over 11 specialty breakouts. Read the updated call for papers for Specialty and Joint Sessions and submit your abstract today visit the Call for Papers webpage


The 2018 Annual Meeting pre-session will take place May 29-30 and will feature the usual lineup of workshops and tours. Additionally, we will be offering sessions centered around a pre-session theme: "Whose Cultural Heritage? Whose Conservation Strategy?"

Papers are solicited on the following topics: to what degree should conservation treatments, collection management policies, and collection care programs be customized for diverse cultures and audiences? What are the barriers to promoting a more diverse workforce in cultural heritage conservation and how can they be overcome? Papers are solicited that discuss these and other issues of diversity, equity, inclusion and access in cultural heritage preservation. Topics can include, but are not limited to, approaches to the appropriate treatment and contextual display of cultural artifacts, preservation in public and private spaces including monuments or sacred sites, the dismantling of Confederate monuments, participation of stakeholder communities, training for allied professionals and other supporters, and the challenge and impacts of achieving diversity and equity on our field, including related funding needs.


"The Use of Leather in Conservation: The current use of leather in book conservation & beyond."

Leather has long been used as a repair material for damaged leather bindings. The working properties of historic leathers can be very different than modern ones. In recent years, conservators have begun to employ other materials, such as paper or cast acrylic, as an alternative to leather in book conservation treatments. Tanned animal skins offer less long-term stability and may be more difficult to prepare than other materials, but may also provide better strength and flexibility in a functioning book. Should conservators continue to employ leather using traditional book repair techniques on leather bindings? Should we abandon the use of tanned skins in favor of more chemically stable materials? Do alternative book repair materials really stand up to the mechanical stresses of use?

We seek a group of speakers for a symposium that will focus on the use of leather in conservation. Speakers would include conservators who fully support the use of leather and conservators who do not, as well as those who have found ways to successfully avoid it altogether. Objects conservators are also invited to submit proposals, as we all may face similar working properties and limitations with current and historic leathers. Topics of interest would also include leather manufacturing processes and materials (both historic and contemporary) and materials science research with a focus on leather.

Speaker sessions will be followed by a discussion involving audience input, experiences, and debate. The final structure of the symposium will be determined by the proposals submitted.

To submit a pre-session abstract, please visit