It is important to understand that a professionally trained and practicing conservator is bound by the Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice established by the American Institute for Conservation for Historic and Artistic Works (AIC).    The reason this is noted is because it is important that you realize that your artwork or collections will being treated, handled and documented by a nationally established and recognized set of standards.   This is what distinguishes a professionally trained and practicing conservator from others who claim to do the same work.   Conservation is a profession that requires in-depth knowledge of art history, studio art and chemistry.   Conservation started as an organized profession in the 1950’s in an attempt to standardize how museums took care of their collections.  At this point in time all conservators were apprentice trained.  In the 1960’s and 1970’s in the United States and Canada a total of four graduate programs were established to formally train students to be conservators.   Today, most professionals in this field have earned graduate degrees from one of these schools or similarly accredited programs worldwide.

The AIC has five distinct levels of membership.   The first is an Associate Member.   Anyone can join this organization at this membership level.    Frequently, institutions or business like libraries, museums, scientists, appraisers, or antique/art galleries join at this level.   The second is a Student Member who is attending a graduate school for conservation.  Apprentice trained or graduate school trained professionals actively working in the field of conservation are either Professional Associate Members or Fellow Members.   After two years as a practicing conservator, an individual can apply for the Professional Associate Membership level.   The Fellow Member level is voted on and then awarded by all Fellow Members to those practicing conservators that exemplify the best of their profession and have at least ten years experience as a professional conservator.   John Hartmann who heads Hartmann Fine Art Conservation Services is a Fellow Member in good standing with the AIC.  The final level of membership is an Honorary Membership granted by AIC’s Board of Directors for extraordinary life-time commitment and service as a conservator.

Click here to review AIC’s Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice.

Contact Us

Hartmann Conservation
321 West Old York Road
Carlisle, PA 17015

P: 717-574-3579