Students, faculty and staff will get a chance to tour the new conservation and collections resource center for the George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum this Friday from 2 to 5 p.m. The facility, located on the Virginia Science and Technology Campus, will be the home of priceless artifacts from GW and The Textile Museum, including textiles dating back to 3000 B.C.E.
The conservation and collection resource center is a private facility designed to store and support the Albert H. Small Washingtoniana, Textile Museum and GW fine arts collections. There will be no public exhibitions or programs at this location, which will serve as a behind-the-scenes resource for the new museum under construction on the Foggy Bottom Campus.
“This magnificent facility enables the museum’s world-recognized collections to receive the highest standards of care for generations to come. Moreover, we are thrilled at the prospect of enhanced access to the collections by scholars, connoisseurs and students,” said Bruce Baganz, president of The Textile Museum’s Board of Trustees.
The LEED silver-certified facility is particularly important for the preservation of textiles. The 21,000-square-foot center boasts temperature and humidity controls and an air filtration system that will benefit the long-term protection and care of the collections it will house. It will hold a state-of-the-art conservation lab and a dye lab to better facilitate the treatment of objects for exhibition. The space also includes a walk-through freezer that will allow large objects to freeze at 30 degrees below zero to protect against pest infestation of the collection as textiles are brought into the facility.
Once objects have been moved, a process that begins next month, this private facility will be open to visiting scholars and students by appointment only. The open house will give the broader GW community an opportunity to see the facility firsthand. Guests will get an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of collections storage, conservations rooms and exhibition preparation spaces. Additionally, attendees can meet museum staff to learn about future collaborations that will take place across disciplines at the university.
“We are excited to demonstrate how this new facility can help further our university’s commitment to excellence through research, teaching, training and learning,” said John Wetenhall, director of the George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum.