About Us

Profile - Kay Söderlund

Kay has worked as a professional conservator for over 25 years. After graduating from the University of Canberra with a Bachelor of Applied Science in the Conservation of Cultural Material (majoring in paper and textile conservation) she worked at several of the major museums in Sydney, including the Australian Museum, Powerhouse Museum and the State Library of New South Wales, where she headed the project to conserve the Journals of the First Fleet for the 1988 Bicentennial celebrations.

For nearly 20 years Kay has worked privately in the museum sector, primarily as a conservator. She was one of the first conservators in Australia to recognise the role preventive conservation would play in the preservation of collections, and in 1992 trained in Preventive Conservation with the Getty Conservation Institute in Los Angeles, USA.

After working as Conservation Outreach Officer with Museums Australia (NSW), a membership and service organisation for museums and galleries in New South Wales, Kay took the position of Director in 1997. This time with Museums Australia, working with regional museums and galleries, consolidated her passion for this sector. In 1999, following a change in funding for the organisation, she returned to the private sector to work as a museum management and conservation consultant.

In 2000 Kay authored 'Be Prepared: Guidelines for Small Museums for Writing a Disaster Preparedness Plan', written for the Heritage Collections Council. She also developed the training package for industry service providers based on 'Be Prepared'. Both the manual and the training package are available on the AMOL (Australian Museums On Line) web site, www.amol.org.au

In August 2004, Kay established Preservation Australia - a conservation consulting, training and archival supply business - to provide a single point of contact for all preservation and conservation requirements, managed by a professional conservator. Through working in the archival product area for some time (when she owned Conservation Resources International, Australia) she had seen the need for a supply business that provided high level preservation/conservation advice, coupled with quality products, high personal levels of service, and a strong underlying ethical approach to business.

Kay has a great deal of experience working with large and small museums, corporations and private collectors, artists and family historians - advising them on the most practical, ethical and appropriate means of protecting their collections. As Kay has worked as a private conservator for over 20 years, she has developed an ability to solve conservation problems in a cost-effective, practical manner while still adhering to museum standards and conservation ethics. Throughout her career, Kay has developed and run workshops and seminars in paper conservation, preventive conservation and basic conservation techniques, for those responsible for the care of collections.

Kay has recently resigned from the National Council of the Australian Institute for the Conservation of Cultural Material (AICCM), having been an executive member for many years. She has also held several positions with Museums Australia (NSW) including State President. She has various publications to her name and has presented numerous papers, workshops and seminars on conservation subjects, preventive conservation issues, and museum management.

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