Friday, 16 November 2018

A crocodile in the collections!

This week's blog comes from Natalia Vladinova, this year's Conservation Intern and the newest addition to the LHSA team - and she's found a rather strange creature in the collections...

I’m Natalia Vladinova, and I’m a graduate of a five-year Master's Degree in restoration and conservation in Bulgaria at the National Academy of Arts. Guided by my interest in the conservation of objects on paper, I went on to specialize in San Gemini, Italy, gaining in-depth knowledge about the conservation and technology of paper and ink production used in various historical periods and in different social-cultural communities. This experience helped me gain a permanent position as a paper conservator in the largest specialized conservation laboratory for objects on paper and parchment in Bulgaria - the conservation department of the National Library "St. St. Cyril and Methodius".

My experience with the internship has been fantastic. I like the way that it is organized, and I think that so far the two most memorable experiences have been the visit to St Cecilia’s Hall and to the Surgeon’s Hall Museum conservation studios. So far, it has been a great learning and networking experience.

The personal collection of German emigre neurologist Ernst Levin is being rehoused! This is my main task during my internship. My aim is for the collection to be surveyed and rehoused in way that makes it easily accessible for use and cataloguing as part of an upcoming PhD, starting in January 2019.

The collection consists of many loose letters and ones that are still in their original envelopes, lots of greetings cards and postcards, some art sketches, many photographs of the Levin family, and even a sword with a harness! This personal collection is quite unusual for LHSA, and the varied media it consists of makes it a challenging one for rehousing.

If you are interested in the project keep an eye for upcoming peculiarities, such as this postcard:

It depicts a poem from one of the most popular Russian children's poets – Korney Chukovsky. An excerpt from the poem is depicted – a long crocodile putting out a fire in the blue sea with the help of pierogi (filled dumplings), blini and dried mushroom! If you are interested in finding more about the poet check out this research by Anna Vaninskaya.

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