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CONSERVATION
The NMPGDL Research Center’s Conservation Group

The NMPGDL Research Center’s Conservation Group began work in February, 2009. Most of the conservators in this group came with many years of experience working at the Research Center “Lietuvos pilys.”

The priority assignment for this group is the preservation – conservation and restoration – of the archaeological finds in the palace territory. A very important part of this work is preventive conservation: the preparation of artifacts for long-term preservation/storage and exhibition, condition monitoring (together with collection managers) of artifacts in storage, the recommendation of proper environmental conditions for their storage and display, the preparation of objects for travel, the making of reproductions, and so forth. This kind of preventive care applies not only to archaeological finds but to the historical objects in the museum’s collections as well.

The work of the conservators is coordinated and evaluated by the museum’s Conservation Council.  They work according to the rules and regulations formulated by the Ministry of Culture and raise their qualifications/expertise through professional exchanges and visits, seminars, workshops, and conferences.

At this time, the group consists of eight conservators, one restoration technician, and one assistant conservator.  Archaeological objects made of a variety of materials are preserved, conserved, and restored in the museum: metal, ceramic, glass, wood, leather, bone, horn, textiles, felt, and others. Various kinds of research are conducted on these objects – some by just the museum staff, others in cooperation with other research institutions.

Metals conservation and research

The following work as metal conservators: Rima Niunkienė (Category I Conservator), Aldona Skučienė (Category I Restoration Technician), Jurgita Kalėjienė (Category I Conservator), Dainius Šavelis (Category II Conservator) and assistant conservator Mantvidas Mieliauskas. Senior conservator Rimvydas Derkintis is responsible for the conservation of metal artifacts, their preventive conservation, maintenance while in storage or on exhibition, and reproductions.

Microchemical quantitative analysis is done to determine alloys and identify coatings (A. Skučienė). Radiological techniques are used to determine structure and level of deterioration. For other, more specific scientific analyses, we consult specialists at other institutions.

Ceramics and glass conservation and research

At this time, there are three conservators in this group: Deimantė Baubaitė (Category II Conservator), Aušra Lukaitytė (Category II Conservator) and Bronislava Kunkulienė (Conservator- Expert).  B. Kunkulienė works with the ceramic, glass, and amber artifacts found in Vilnius Lower Castle and makes models of the tile stoves in the restored palace.

The museum conservators work with specialists from other organizations in carrying out various kinds of research – chemical, technological, art history – in order to identify the composition of clay masses, glazes, mortar and grout as well as to gather information about the techniques of their manufacture. This kind of research was particularly helpful in work with the ceramic artifacts and in reproducing the palace’s cermic tile stoves.

Wood conservation and research

The wooden archaeological finds of Vilnius Lower Castle are conserved by the Category I Conservator of wooden artifacts Deimantė Baubaitė. She is assisted by Tomas Valatkevičius, assistant conservator  in the Archaeology Group.

The museum has a Dendrochronology and Dendrology Laboratory, headed by Dr. Rūtilė Pukienė, where the age of the wood and the trees it came from are precisely identified. Laboratory findings help determine the amount of deterioration in the objects, their function, any physical evidence of their use, and techniques of manufacture.

Leather conservation and research

Leather artifacts are conserved by Categoty I Conservator Jurgita Kalėjienė and Category I Conservator Dr. Arūnas Puškorius.
In the laboratory, the structure of the objects is studied and the species of animal they came from identified.

Works by Category I conservator Deimantė Baubaitė >>>

Works by Category I conservator Jurgita Kalėjienė >>>

 

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