Preservation Services Across Campus: The Graduate School of Design

A peg board full of brushes of various sizes with wooden handles.  A large work bench in a conservation lab.

This series of blog posts highlights the different spaces across the Harvard campus where Preservation Services staff work to preserve and conserve library materials. 

The Frances Loeb Library Conservation Lab at the Graduate School of Design was founded in 1992 when the library storage room was emptied out, painted, the appropriate lighting was installed. With more archival collections being acquired, more flat paper objects needed conservation attention.  

Located in the lower level of Gund Hall, the Conservation Lab is equipped to treat all kinds of books and paper items. A critical challenge is the library’s extensive holdings of oversized materials, especially folio books and large flat paper collections (maps, plans, drawings, etc.), all of which require a large, flat surface on which to do treatment.  

A conservation lab with a board shear in the foreground.  A book press in a conservation lab.

The laboratory is staffed by a full-time conservator, Irina Gorstein, of the Weissman Preservation Center. Independent contractors and interns from conservation and bookbinding programs occasionally augment the conservation facility. Irina is a native of Saint-Petersburg, Russia. She holds a Degree in Library Science from Saint-Petersburg State University of Culture and Arts and a Certificate in Bookbinding from the North Bennet Street School in Boston. 

See also: Conservation