Julia Flatman, Senior Associate Lecturer, School of Visual Arts
What’s that? is the response I got from most people when they interacted with the objects I had put together from the MoDiP collection. I wanted to enhance curiosity and trigger confusion. I laid out around 30 items that I labelled as strange, peculiar and weird and invited audience response. I sound recorded everybody’s reactions and put together this piece that I hope makes you feel the same element of puzzlement around identifying the objects, as the people who reacted to them did.
Every Museum or Art Gallery has a conservation plan to preserve the objects in its collection. The challenges involved in preserving artefacts and minimising deterioration was the focus for this study. The Museum of Design in Plastics was the main foundation of research used, looking at plastic artefacts that have deteriorated whilst being in the collections care.
Acrylic paint has a plastic content, and is a relatively new material, which has meant that Art galleries are still exploring how to preserve and clean works within their care. I have explored the effect that household cleaning products have deteriorating the surface of an acrylic painting, while highlighting the apparent irony of an image that has the quality of painting by numbers requiring restoration and preservation.