UNIVERSITY OF MELBOURNE PhD STUDENTS
Bronwyn is investigating strategies for improving the preservation of plastics within Australian textile collections, with an emphasis on garments. A single garment can contain numerous plastics in the form of synthetic fabrics, structural foams or applied decorative elements in combination with natural plant and animal fibres as well as metals. As a consequence the complexity of deterioration processes present in these collection items are considerable.
Bronwyn will research rapid methods for plastics identification, degradation pathways and the effect of deterioration products on adjacent materials. Her PhD supervisors are Dr Petronella Nel and Professor Robyn Sloggett.
A graduate of the University of Canberra conservation program, Bronwyn has over 20 years of experience as a textile conservator. She has worked at the Australian National Maritime Museum, the Australian War Memorial, The National Gallery of Australia, The Textile Museum in Washington DC, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and most recently as Senior Conservator of Textiles at the National Gallery of Victoria.
Bronwyn is the recipient of an ARC-LP funded research and training scholarship (2018–2021).
Julianne Bell MCulMatCons, BA(Hons)
Julianne is investigating strategies for improving the management and preservation of historic plastic objects in Australian museum collections. She will utilise comparative ageing experiments, industry interviews and collection surveys, and aims to establish a nationwide polymer database for the museum industry. Her supervisors are Dr Petronella Nel and Professor Robyn Sloggett.
Julianne completed a Master of Cultural Material Conservation (2016) specialising in objects conservation and a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) (2013) majoring in Classics and Archaeology with a History minor, both obtained at the University of Melbourne. Her master’s minor thesis investigated alternative, sustainable techniques for preserving cellulose triacetate film materials and resulted in a conference presentation and publication (AICCM Bulletin 2017, vol. 38(2), pp.103–113).
Julianne is the recipient of an ARC-LP funded research and training scholarship (2017–2020), the 2018 Alma Hansen Scholarship, and the Arts Faculty 110 Scholarship.
Cancy Chu MCulMatCons, BA
Cancy is investigating conservation approaches for managing malignant plastics in archive collections. Encompassing a range of known unstable films, questionably stable synthetic papers, and apparently stable plastic storage enclosures, her project involves materials testing and identifying sustainable conservation strategies in an archival context. Her supervisors are Dr Petronella Nel and Professor Robyn Sloggett.
Cancy received her Master of Cultural Materials Conservation from the University of Melbourne (2017), after completing a minor thesis on the deterioration of stone paper, a polymer-based and light sensitive material. She received a Bachelor of Arts (2015) from Reed College, where she majored in studio art with a focus on artists’ books. She has worked at the State Archive and Records Authority of New South Wales (2017) and completed internships at the State Library of Victoria (2017), The Metropolitan Museum of Art (2015), and the National University of Singapore Museum (2010).
Cancy is the recipient of a Melbourne Research Scholarship awarded by the Australian Commonwealth Government's Research Training Program (2018–2021).
Sharon Wong MCulMatCons, MAppCom(Acc), DipML(Japan), BA
Sharon is investigating the impact of plastics in archaeology. The work intends to survey, identify and analyse the composition and condition of polymeric materials in the field including excavated artefacts and associated storage receptacles to assist in the conservation management of malignant plastics. Her supervisors are Dr Petronella Nel and Professor Robyn Sloggett.
Sharon completed a Master of Cultural Materials Conservation (2015), a Master of Applied Commerce (Accounting) (2009), a Bachelor of Arts with majors in classical studies and archaeology and linguistics and applied linguistics (2007) as well as a Diploma in Modern Languages (Japanese) (2007) at the University of Melbourne. Her Masters’ minor thesis investigated the materials and techniques of Peranakan ceramics from SE Asia, to inform traditional approaches for conserving high-fired porcelain. She undertook a conservation internship at the Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, Australia.
Sharon was awarded a grant from the Ian Potter Cultural Trust in 2015 to support a postgraduate residency at the National Palace Museum in Taipei, Taiwan and is the recipient of a McCoy Project PhD scholarship (2018–2021).