2022 – How to Handle the Dirt

How to handle the dirt. Unveiling and distinguishing sometimes well disguised traces of heritage value from unwanted changes in the material biography of textile heritage objects.

The Perier-D’Ieteren Foundation supports the PhD project of Griet Kockelkoren at the University of Antwerp and the Université Libre de Bruxelles / La Cambre.

Preserving not only the ‘material object’, but preserving the heritage values of an object is not a novel concept within the contemporary conservation practice. The challenge of this approach lies in looking beyond what is visible to the naked eye and in determining the unknown and sometimes well disguised aspects and traces of ‘significance’ present within an object. This research aims to look into research methodologies to help textile conservators to uncover, read, understand and interpret traces of significance in the material biography of an object and to help them distinguish these significant traces from those of unwanted change (damage).