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Conservation in the Museums

Museums conserve cultural assets in order to guarantee that they are passed on to future generations. This function is essential and justifies on its own the existence of the museums.

The scientific analysis methods currently available in the area of conservation allow use to obtain a series of data on the nature, technical make-up and degradation of the materials, and their causes, and, based on these analyses, we are able to select the perfect treatment in each action.

The variety of situations that arise from these studies show how difficult it is to establish common conservation conditions for all assets.

Conservation is carried out in two areas: preventive conservation and restoration.

A basic premise is the importance of proper preventive maintenance, since it is an ongoing, integral action that affects all cultural assets as a whole.

Technical department of conservation

The technical departments of conservation at the national museums managed by the General Department of Fine Arts and Cultural Assets and Archives and Libraries have the following duties:

  • Provide the conditions required for preventive conservation of the museum collections, both in warehouses and in exhibition rooms and in restoration workshops.
  • Follow-up and control the physical conditions of the collections in warehouses or exhibition rooms, as well as everything related to movement of any type.
  • Schedule and carry out the analyses and examinations required to determine the state of conservation of the collections and perform the necessary preservation, cleaning and restoration tasks.
  • Report on the appropriateness of temporary loans or museum collection deposits based on the state of conservation and propose the physical conditions for their transfer and maintenance outside of the museum.
  • Organise the museum collection storage systems so that all collections are sorted, accessible and in appropriate conditions for their conservation and study.
  • Manage collection transfers inside and outside of the museum.
  • Co-operate in research programmes with institutions outside of the museum.

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