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Parseh J Archaeol Stud 2020, 4(13): 193-205 Back to browse issues page
Determining the Effect of Preventive Conservation in Private Collections on the Cultural Values
Leila Salehioun1, Mehrnaz Azadi 2, Reza Vahidzadeh3, Faezeh Taghipour4
1- PhD Candidate in restoration of cultural and historical monuments, Faculty of Conservation and Restoration, Isfahan University of Arts, Isfahan, Iran.
2- Associate Professor, Department of Restoration of Cultural and Historical Monuments, Faculty of Conservation and Restoration, Isfahan University of Arts, Isfahan, Iran , m.azadi@aui.ac.ir
3- Assistant Professor, Department of Restoration, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, Islamic Azad University, Central Tehran Branch, Tehran, Iran.
4- Assistant Professor, Department of Cultural Management, Faculty of Educational Sciences, Psychology and Foreign Languages, Islamic Azad University, Khorasgan Branch, Isfahan, Iran.
Abstract:   (1432 Views)

Applying preventive conservation methods to protect the cultural heritages is one the most important subjects among the conservators. Preventive conservation is the best method that can be implemented in the museums. But the point comes out when one notices that numerous valuable cultural heritages are protected in the private homes or what is called private collections. That is why there are various attempts to extend the practice of preventive conservation in these collections around the globe. In Iran, despite the large numbers of private collections, there are many problems regarding preventive conservation which comes out of various reasons. Due to the importance of preventive actions toward the cultural heritages, this article tries to determine the effect of applying preventive conservation practice in private collections in Iran regarding the cultural values of their items. The applied method is a quantitative-qualitative one. In the qualitative section we have interviwed 14 experts in the field of cultural heritages, collection owners and museum. The reliability and narration of the deep interviews have been checked. Analyzing the obtained information was done by using Stevick-Collaizzi-Keen method. In the second and quantitative part, we have used the results of the first part to determine the details of a questionnaire and using Cochran formula, the size of sample society has been determined. Based on that, the questionnaire has been completed by 96 collectors around the country, Friedmann test gave us the priority of the components. Our results show that the effects of not applying or improper applying of preventive conservation methods in private collections can be expressed in three levels which contains the physical destruction of the items, destruction of their cultural values and at last, material and spiritual loss for the collectors. Based on the results, the most important effects of not applying or improper applying of preventive conservation methods in private collections, is cultural values destruction.
Keywords: Preventive Protection, Private Collections, Cultural Value, Protection, Collection Management.

Historical items are quite important from the cultural point of view and require special treatments. Some of these valuable items are collected and kept in private collections. Although these historical items commonly registered by Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization of Iran, they do not receive the governmental supervision, continuously. In most cases these items are in private collections because they are family heritages or the owner is interested in keeping historical items. This implies that most of the collectors do not have proper information or experience in modern conservation methods practice. As the private collections are the key component to prevent the cultural heritages from trading out of the country. In addition, the values of the items in private collection is not normally less than the ones in the museums and they are maintained in a completely different condition compared to the museums, thus in the first place, the collectors should protect them from being damaged or lost. These heritages are our valuable cultural heritages, there needs to be more serious efforts by experts in the field or the governmental organization to assist the owners for better preservation of the items. These days, preventive conservation is the most noticed action toward the cultural heritage items. in this method there is just indirect actions toward the item to make their surrounding environment more suitable i. e. adjusting temperature, light, gases, insects and etc. In this way the item is less likely to get damaged or at least the speed of damage will decrease dramatically. Although these actions are not expensive but not applying them will make problems for our cultural heritage or damages for the whole nation culture. The main concern regarding is to know the most important effects of not applying the preventive conservation actions or the improper one. It seems that the most important one is damaging the cultural values. 

The Effects of not Applying Preventive Conservation
One of the key point in preserving the historical items is their “Values”, because all is being done regarding them has direct connection with their values in the society or nation. Recognizing the values of historical heritages and finding their priority is determining in applying conservations toward them. There are various definitions and charters for defining the different values of an item. 
As the items in private collection are not less valuable than the ones in the museums it is required for the responsible organizations to take proper action toward protecting them. The connections between the academic expert in conservation and the collectors has two sided benefits for both of them. In one way it will decrease the potential damage which can happen to the historical heritages, and in the other hand it will increases the experts knowledge about the history and inherited items.
 Here we have used a qualitative-quantitative method to analyze the effects of not applying or improper applying of preventive conservation practice. In this way we have interviewed conservation 14 experts and collectors to analyze using Collaizi -con method the outcomes so that we can design a questionnaire. The resultant questionnaire has been completed by the 95 collectors and last we have found the most important effects of not applying preventive conservation or the improper one using Friedmann test. We have also used Cronbach’s alpha and One Sample T-Test to check the reliability and the priorities and equalities of the variables (here the negative effects), respectively. Based on the Friedmann test, “loss of cultural values” of the historical heritages is the most important effect of not applying or improper applying of preventive conservation.

We have studied the effects of not applying preventive conservation in the private collections in Iran. Our qualitative results show that the consequences of not applying the preventive conservation can be categorized in three level and three classes. 
The first class is causing damage to the historical items such as damages to the cultural heritages of the country, damages to the items, causing damages to other items, continuing the damage process, damages to the completeness of the item. the second one which seems to be the most important one includes the loss of values of the item. This class has three subclasses itself: 1- direct loss of the values which can be scientific, historical, cultural and etc. values; 2- loss of their identity which will end up to the loss of nation culture as they will not keep their completeness; 3- loss of family traditions and cultural identities. 
The last class of negative consequences of not applying preventive conservation is the material and spiritual loss for the collectors. These damages includes: the items to be stolen, to be lost, decrease the life of the item and finally requiring expensive repairing or restoring actions.
A quantitative study using Friedmann test shows that between all of the possible results of not applying preventive conservation, the most important one is “the loss of cultural values”. As the “values” of an item is the most important factor for collecting the historical heritages, our results make a firm reason for the responsible organizations to take more serious decisions for applying preventive conservation in private collections.

Keywords: Preventive Protection, Private Collections, Cultural Value, Protection, Collection Management..
Full-Text [PDF 501 kb]   (227 Downloads)    
Type of Study: Research | Subject: Interdisciplinary
Received: 2020/05/12 | Accepted: 2020/09/18 | Published: 2020/11/30
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Salehioun L, Azadi M, Vahidzadeh R, Taghipour F. Determining the Effect of Preventive Conservation in Private Collections on the Cultural Values. Parseh J Archaeol Stud. 2020; 4 (13) :193-205
URL: http://journal.richt.ir/mbp/article-1-338-en.html

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