The Conservation of Leather Bookbindings

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This workshop is full and the wait list is now closed.

March 9 - 13, 2020
Hesburgh Libraries, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN
Instructed by Jeffery Peachey, organized by Liz Dube

In this week-long intensive workshop, participants will be introduced to a wide variety of current techniques used to conserve leather bookbindings. Detached boards are the most common place leather bookbindings fail and many treatments involve a combination of these five primary techniques which will be taught: mechanical sewing extensions and tacketing, inner hinge repairs, interior-board repairs (both splitting and slotting), outer joint repairs, and several styles of rebacking. Questions concerning methods of consolidating older leather, the archival qualities of modern leather, and leather dyes will be discussed and a variety of methods to pare, consolidate, and lift leather will be introduced. Since a sharp knife is crucial to success in any leather work, sharpening will also be taught.

Participants will learn how to pare leather with a knife, use a board slotting machine, a modified 151 spokeshave, a variety of lifting knives and tools, and a double edge razor blade paring machine. Decision making based on the actual books will be discussed. The primary goal of this workshop is to equip participants with a more nuanced understanding of the pros and cons of currently practiced leather conservation techniques, gain supervised experience while performing them, and feedback when they are completed.

Book conservators, conservation technicians, and bookbinders who wish to learn, expand, or refresh their treatment skills are all welcome. Previous conservation and/or bookbinding experience is required.

Jeffrey

Peachey

Jeffrey S. Peachey is an independent book conservator and toolmaker based in New York City. For more than 25 years, he has specialized in the conservation of books for institutions and individuals. He is a Professional Associate in the American Institute for Conservation, has taught book conservation workshops internationally, and was recently awarded fellowships to support his current research into 19th century bookbinding from the Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center (Italy) and Rochester Institute of Technology's Cary Collection (New York). He is Visiting Instructor for the Library and Archives Conservation Education Consortium of Buffalo State University, New York University, and the Winterthur/ University of Delaware. "Ausbund 1564: The History and Conservation of an Anabaptist Icon" is his latest publication.

Registration Policies

  • Workshops are subject to cancellation if minimum enrollment is not met 30 days prior to the event. FAIC will refund the full registration fee, but is not responsible for transportation, housing, loss of income, or other costs.
  • Emergency school closings in the community where the workshop is scheduled will cause a cancellation of that workshop. Every effort will be made to reschedule the event.
  • If a registrant can no longer attend the workshop, registration fees will be refunded minus a $25 processing fee when a cancellation request is made in writing and received by the FAIC office at least 30 days before the program start date.
  • We ask that anyone requiring Americans with Disabilities Act accommodations register his/her needs with FAIC at least 14 days before the workshop.
  • By attending an FAIC workshop, you consent to interview(s), photography, audio recording, video recording and its/their release, publication, exhibition, or reproduction to be used for promotional purposes, marketing, inclusion on websites, social media, or any other purpose by FAIC and its affiliates and representatives. Images, photos, and/or videos may be used to promote similar AIC/FAIC events in the future, highlight the event, and exhibit the work of AIC/FAIC.

This program is supported by the Foundation for Advancement in Conservation Endowment for Professional Development (FAIC). FAIC was created by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and is supported by donations from members of the American Institute for Conservation and its friends. Courses are made possible with the assistance of many AIC members, but no AIC membership dues were used to create or present this course.

Without support, the registration fee for this workshop would be $1,520. FAIC relies on your contributions to support these and its many other programs. Learn more about donating to the foundation here.

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