Art Museum closes for extensive renovations April 15
Art Museum will close April 15 for extensive renovations to
the museums climate control system and will reopen in
in large part by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)
National Heritage Preservation Program, the result will be a
high quality environment for the museums nationally recognized
to the NEH grant, support for the project comes from a private
family foundation and the assistance of UNM Facility Planning
under Vice President for Business and Finance Julie Weaks. The
new system will provide stable humidity and temperature and
clean, filtered air in the museum galleries and storage vaults.
humidity and temperature are essential because art objects are
remarkably sensitive to fluctuations in humidity and temperature,
as well as light levels and particulate contaminants. Wood,
canvas, paper, paint and photographic emulsionall expand
and contract at different rates with changes in humidity and
temperature. Over time, paint and photographic emulsion can
crack and separate from its paper or canvas support. A small
particle can settle on a surface and, during the years, become
a focus for chemical damage to the paint or emulsion.
almost forty years since the museum was built, the technology
for providing stable environmental conditions has improved dramatically,
at the same time that research in the science of art conservation
increasingly focused attention on the potential damage to art
stored under poor conditions.
Art Museum has long monitored environmental conditions in the
collections areas and worked with art conservators to evaluate
and conserve works of art. In 1999, UNM joined a nation-wide
consortium, organized by the Image Permanence Institute, to
study the effects of environmental changes on museum collections.
increasing attention to collection preservation occurred as
the range and cultural significance of the museums collections
grew exponentially. The UNM Art Museum now holds approximately
30,000 works of artpainting, sculpture, photographs, drawings,
and printsthat represent over 500 years of artistic and
chance to see a favorite work of art before the museum closes
April 15? Pick up a copy of the UNM Art Museums Highlights
of the Collection, an illustrated selection of some of the most
important objects in the collection. Museum information, educational
programs, and virtual exhibitions can be accessed at http://UNMartmuseum.unm.edu.