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CHANTRY LIBRARY SUBJECT BIBLIOGRAPHIES NO.4: ISLAMIC SLIPCASES

While the library is closed in accordance with government Covid19 guidelines, the staff and wider OCC team are still very active. The Chantry Library recently published the fourth in its series of specialist subject bibliographies. The latest bibliography is by David Plummer, an MA graduate from the book conservation pathway at West Dean College. David has a particular interest in book cultures from, or associated with, the Islamicate cultural world. It was this interest which led him to conduct a research project on the history and diversity of Islamic slip-cases, a form of protective book storage which was popular in many regions of the Islamicate world. This research project was supported by the Frederick Bearman Research Grant which enabled David to conduct field research in libraries ranging from Sarajevo to Manchester. A brief insight into this primary research can be found here.

2020_Plummer_Islamic _slipcases

David gave a lecture summarising his research at the annual Frederick Bearman memorial evening which took place on 11th December 2019 at the Royal Asiatic Society in London. During this lecture, David discussed the visual and textual evidence for slipcases before delving into the nature of his survey. Whilst providing an insight into the variations between slipcases, David was keen to stress the need for a more expansive survey in order to arrive at a more complete understanding. The lecture also included wonderful images of historic slipcases, including some superb examples of decorated papers.

A more detailed version of David’s research will be published in a forthcoming article co-authored by Dr Karin Scheper, a renowned expert in Islamicate bindings. In the meantime, the Chantry Library would like to present a recently published annotated bibliography, in which David overviews a selection of books and articles relating to Islamic slipcases. A number of the books listed by David date back to the 19th century and this is testament to the depth of his research.

Please click here to access David’s bibliography.

By Jasdip Dhillon

Chantry Library Subject Bibliographies – No. 3: Woven Fabrics in Book Conservation by Celia Bockmuehl and Nikki Tomkins

Our third, new subject bibliography has just been posted on the use of woven fabrics in the conservation of books.

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The bibliography has been produced by two of the Oxford Conservation Consortium’s own conservators, Celia Bockmuehl and Nikki Tomkins (pictured above). It emerged from a collaborative research project undertaken by OCC with Bodleian Conservation and Collection Care and material scientists at Cranfield University. The project was prompted by the main supplier of fabrics for conservation ceasing production in 2007. Its purpose was to test the material properties of the fabrics used for book conservation.

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The research investigated the strength and durability of aerolinen and aerocotton, comparing different suppliers, warp weft and bias orientation of the fabric, and the effect of laundering on the fabric. Tests conducted measured mass per unit area, thickness, sett, tensile strength, folding endurance, and dimensional change.

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Samples under the microscope

The project’s findings were presented at the Icon Conference 2019, the International IADA Conference 2019 in Warsaw, and more locally for Oxford Conservators’ Group. More details can be found in the full project write up, which will appear in a forthcoming number of Studies in conservation, and has already been published online at this DOI: 10.1080/00393630.2019.1672442

You can find Celia and Nikki’s bibliography by following this link.

New Year, new books! What’s been eating your collection over Christmas?

Welcome to 2020 – and still in a (slightly) festive mindframe our first blog of the year will celebrate a further donation of books from a great supporter of the Library, David Pinniger.

A major contributer to the field of Integrated Pest Management, the Library already has a number of David Pinniger’s books, as well as a his very substantial collection of offprints on the subject. Most of these are listed on his bibliographic Database of IPM references. So if you are interested in any of the titles listed there and cannot find them please ask!

The database can be found on the What’s eating your collection website. The site also has a tool to help identity the insects found in the blunder traps readers hopefully have dotted around their library, archive, or museum.

David Pinniger’s latest donation includes a volume by him:

It also includes preprints from the 23rd International Symposium on the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Property from Tokyo 1999 about IPM in Asia “Meeting the Montreal protocol”, as well as a report from 2002 on the international course on conserving Japanese paper.

Another new titles is:

There are also titles in French on safeguarding heritage collections and biological deterioration and in German on museum storage.

So thank you again to David Pinniger for a varied and interesting donation of books.

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A selection from our new book display!

18 years of Chantry Library at Grove Cottage!

The Chantry Library moved to Grove Cottage from the Ashmolean Museum on November 2nd 2001. Judith Chantry had looked after the library for many years when it was housed within Ashmole’s Paper Conservation Studio (after a move from the India Office), and the Chantry family made a major gift to the library after Judith’s death in 1999.

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OCC is pleased to support the Library, to celebrate its long association with Oxford conservators, students, and readers, and to remember Judith Chantry’s contribution to the conservation profession!

Glass and ceramics conference proceedings: new to Chantry

Many thanks to Dana Norris and Kenneth Watt, donating on behalf of the ICON Ceramics & Glass Working Group, for a copy  of the September conference held in London Recent advance in class and ceramics conservation 2019. The conference was the Interim Meeting of the ICON-CC Glass & Ceramics Working Group and the ICON Ceramics and Glass Group Conference.

Our copy, at the time of writing unique in Oxford, is now on SOLO: http://solo.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/permalink/f/89vilt/oxfaleph021736491

“Sacred scripts” Activity Day & book donation

The Library has received by donation the newly published Treasures of Ethiopia and Eritrea in the Bodleian Library, Oxford. This follows on from a very successful event in Blackwell Hall, the ‘Sacred Scripts of Ethiopia and Eritrea Activity Day’, at which three OCC conservators spent several happy hours as volunteers helping Sacred Scripts attendees to bind a notebook using techniques seen in Ethiopian and Eritrean manuscripts from the Bodleian’s collections.

For more info on the activity day, please see the event webpage.

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Lisa Handke, Jane Eagan, Nikki Tomkins volunteering at the Sacred Scripts Activity Day