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Photomechanical Symposium – Registration now OPEN

Registration is now open for FAIC’s "Photomechanical Prints: History, Technology, Aesthetics, and Use" symposium. The symposium will take place at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC on October 31 - November 2, 2023. The registration fee is $199 for members of the American Institute for Conservation, $249 for non-members, and $119 for students.

Workshops and tours will take place on October 30 and November 3. Applications are currently being accepted for workshop on collotype printing, photogravure printing, and processes identification. Interested individuals must apply by April 1 to be considered for a workshop. Tours of photomechanical collections in prominent local institutions will be offered. Registration will open at the beginning of May on a first-come first-serve basis.

For roughly 150 years, people have been accustomed to seeing photomechanical prints on a daily basis. Prints exist in a variety of milieus with multiple variations over time, use, and geography. Historic and contemporary examples are prevalent in museums, libraries, archives, and personal collections worldwide. Photomechanical prints were developed to fill many needs including practical and economical methods for mass reproduction, techniques to facilitate the simultaneous printing of images and text, increased image permanence, a perception of increased truthfulness and objectivity, and an autonomous means of artistic expression. They exist at the intersections of numerous disciplines: photography and printmaking, functional and artistic practices, the histories of photography and the graphic arts, and the specialties of paper and photograph conservation.

The program will provide an opportunity for conservators, curators, historians, scientists, collections managers, catalogers, archivists, librarians, educators, printmakers, artists, and collectors to convene and collaborate while exploring all aspects of photomechanical printing. The resulting advancement of our collective understanding of these ubiquitous but under-researched materials will allow for new interpretations and improved approaches to their collection, interpretation, preservation, treatment, and display.

The program schedule, abstracts, and workshop information can be found at Register for the symposium and apply for the workshops now!

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