Category:Mounts & Mountmaking

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About Mountmaking[edit | edit source]

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Mountmaking is the process of designing, fabricating and installing the structures (called mounts, brackets or armatures) that safely support collections objects and artifacts while they are on exhibit or in storage. Working with a variety of conservation-approved metals, plastics and foams to create a custom armature for each object, a mountmaker must find a way to safely support the object within the vision of curators, designers and art directors. Mountmakers work closely with conservators to learn the strengths and weaknesses of each object and to find safe fabrication materials. The goal is to minimize damage to the artifacts both while on display and during the object handling required to make mounts. A well considered, thoughtfully designed, safely constructed, appropriately supporting mount is a form of preventative conservation for a museum object while under the stresses of exhibition display. A good mount can help show an object to its best advantage, enhancing the visitor's experience.

Mountmaking skills & training[edit | edit source]

While there are a few workshops and seminars to gain basic skills, and there are lots of training videos on YouTube, real mountmaking expertise comes with attention and practice and curiosity, best done in an apprentice-like setting. If you are very interested in learning the ropes, seek out someone who has made mounts that you find successful and contact them!

Check the IMF website for a list of some available trainings, learning opportunities and recordings of IMF talks and workshops. Inclusion in the list does not imply recommendation.

Looking for a mountmaker?[edit | edit source]

Stay tuned! The IMF is currently collecting names of both staff and private mountmakers to compile a Mountmaker Directory that is scheduled to come out in the fall of 2023!

If you know of a mountmaker who should be on the list, have them fill out this poll by June 30, 2023 to be part of this year's version.

About the International Mountmakers Forum[edit | edit source]

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Who we are[edit | edit source]

Bringing together museum professionals from across the globe, the International Mountmakers Forum was created to exchange knowledge and ideas regarding all aspects of mountmaking.

International Mountmakers Forum online community[edit | edit source]

The group maintains an Online Forum on the International Mountmakers Forum website to discuss mountmaking issues. It is open to mountmakers and anyone interested in mountmaking issues.

To join this group (no charge), go to International Mountmakers Forum website and sign up!

International Mountmakers Forum Conference[edit | edit source]

The Mountmakers Forum sponsors a biennial conference held at different host institutions. For information on past and future Fora see below.

International Mountmakers Forum YouTube Channel[edit | edit source]

The Mountmakers Forum maintains a YouTube channel for recordings of past Mountmaker Fora and related mountmaking topics. Click here to explore.

International Mountmakers Forum Instagram[edit | edit source]

The Mountmakers Forum maintains an Instagram account for fun and informative sharing of all things mountmaking! Click here to enjoy and follow.

Mountmaking in Print and Online[edit | edit source]

Cover of JAIC 51:1 Special Mountmaking Issue

Publications[edit | edit source]

The IMF website has a "Published and Posted" page to find mountmaking and related articles, books, websites, and more. A few conservation collaborations are shown below:

  - Table of Contents
  - Cynthia Amneus and Marla Miles A Method for Invisibly Mounting Costume Using Fosshape
  - BJ Farrar Improved Mounting System for an Ancient Bronze Torso of a Youth
  - Susanne Gansicke, Pamela Hatchfield, Jean Louis Lachevre, Craig Uram, Dante Vallance New Mounting Systems Provide Mobility for Two Ancient Objects at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
  - Jamie Hascall Receiver Systems for Object Mounts: A Design Concept for Safe Installation and Display Flexibility
  - Deanna Hovey Simple and Invisible Solutions Using Rare Earth Disc Magnets in Mountmaking
  - McKenzie Lowry Exploring Process and Design for Visually Unobtrusive Object Mounts
  - Mark Mitton and Adrienne Pamp Cast Bronze Mounts for Temporary Exhibitions at the J. Paul Getty Museum
  - Luba Dovgan Nurse A Support Mount Made from Nomex Card for Storage and Three-Dimensional Display of an Incomplete and Fragile 19th Century Straw Bonnet
  - Jonathan Pressler Mount Challenges and Solutions for Native Alaskan Objects for a Study Collection in an Earthquake Zone
  - Shelly Uhlir Mounting Multiple-Piece Ensembles for an Exhibit of Plains, Plateau and Great Basin Attire at the National Museum of the American Indian

Articles and Links[edit | edit source]

Below are just a few of the many more you can find at the IMF website's Published and Posted page

  • STASHc- Storage Techniques for Art, Science and History Collections. A useful resource to find or share solutions to storage mounting challenges.

How to Contribute to this Site[edit | edit source]

To contribute information on mountmaking on this page please contact Shelly Uhlir, the Mountmakers Forum's liaison to AIC's Collection Care Network.

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