Thank you for being a Friend! We'd love to share some stories and tips so you can learn more about conservation and how to care for things that matter to you.
Boy, Am I Blue!
Eighteenth-century artist Thomas Gainsborough’s famous painting, “The Blue Boy,” is undergoing conservation at the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. The current exhibition, "Project Blue Boy," shares treatment of the painting with the public; visitors will be able to watch American Institute for Conservation Professional Associate Christina O'Connell treat the painting.

In this article, O'Connell talks about her six “go to” tools of the trade and why they’re important to conservation science. You can learn more about Project Blue Boy on the project's website .
Caring for Your Books
We all have books that are important to us – it might be the family bible, passed down for generations, a beloved children’s book, or a signed copy of a favorite novel. Following some simple tips can help keep them safe!

  • Maintain a steady, book-friendly environment. This includes:
  • Limiting exposure to light, including both sunlight and artificial light.
  • Keeping the temperature and humidity steady. Sudden changes in either can result in damage.
  • Support your books! If you’re keeping them on a shelf, make sure they’re supported with neighboring books or smooth-surfaced bookends. Don’t pack them in tightly either – no one likes to be crowded!
  • Handle your books with freshly washed hands and avoid:
  • Pulling books out by the top of the binding, called the headcap.
  • Putting an open book face down
  • Writing in a book – if you do, use a pencil!
  • Using metal or leather bookmarks or post-its – use a paper bookmark.
  • Eating, drinking, or smoking around your books
  • Watch out for pests and clean away dust where it accumulates. Frequently checking in on your books will help you identify any concerns for a conservator to address.

Found a few books that need some TLC? See our section below about Finding a
Finding a Conservator
If it matters to you, it’s worth conserving. A trained conservator can help you make important decisions about when to pursue conservation treatment.

We offer a free search tool to find a conservator in your area! All of the conservators listed have been reviewed by a panel of their peers who evaluated their training and professional experience. All of these conservators have also agreed to practice according to a Code of Ethics.

There are two ways to search: by location or by name. If you’re not sure where to start, use your zip code to establish a search radius, and enter the type of object you need help with. If someone has recommended a conservator to you, you can check to see if they are listed with us.

Not sure how to choose someone from your list? For more information how to select a conservator, check out our Guide to Finding a Conservator
First Aid for Culture
Recent stories in the news, like the devastating fire at the National Museum of Brazil, remind us that emergencies can pose a huge risk to our cultural heritage. Natural disasters, such as hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding, and wildfires, as well as man-made hazards, can result in the loss of priceless pieces of our shared story.

When emergencies affect collecting institutions, they can call on the National Heritage Responders, a trained team of individuals with the expertise needed to help those communities recover from the unexpected. Friends of Conservation help support the NHR, allowing them to deploy to affected areas when needed. Thank you!

Learn more about the National