Attendees who registered for the Conference were invited to attend one of the following eleven tours.


Tour 1: Metropolitan Museum of Art Conservation Science Laboratory

Led by Adriana Rizzo of the Conservation Science Department of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art hosts one of the most integrated and progressive Conservation Science labs in the world. Led by Adriana Rizzo, an Associate Research Scientist with more than a decade of experience working at the Met on objects consisting of various materials and cultures, this tour will provide a behind the scenes look at the equipment and how it is used to inform and treat the Metropolitan’s vast collection. 

Address: 1000 Fifth Ave, New York, NY

Travel: Approx. 20-30 minutes on public transport from conference venue.


Tour 2: Park Avenue Armory: Herters Brothers and Louis Comfort Tiffany with Associated Artists

Led by Mark Adams of R. Mark Adams, Inc.; Kirsten Reoch of the Park Avenue Armory; Dawn D’Alusio and John Lippert of Foreground Conservation and Decorative Arts

The Park Avenue Armory is one of America’s finest gems of Aesthetic Period Architecture. At once beautiful and opulent, the armory was completed in 1881 with money from New York’s most prominent Gilded Age families. The tour will visit two of the recently restored rooms: The Board of Officers Room designed and built by Herters Brothers, and the Veterans Room by Louis Comfort Tiffany and Associated Artists. Kirsten Reoch, Director of Design and Construction at the Park Avenue Armory will provide the history and an overview of the work. Dawn D’Aluisio and John Lippert of Foreground CDA will speak to the many issues of the ceilings and walls including the differences in the approaches to the painted surfaces as well as the conservation issues. Mark Adams of R. Mark Adams, Inc. will speak to the stylistic dichotomy created between Herters Brothers at the end of their career versus the mentality of youth with the Associated Artists of the Veterans Room, as well as the challenges involved with the conservation of the various clear coat finishes.

Address: 643 Park Avenue, New York, NY

Travel: Approx. 45-55 minutes on public transport from conference venue.


Tour 3: Governors Island National Monument, Whitewash Tests in Castle Williams

Led by Judy Jacob, Senior Conservator of the National Park Service

Castle Williams, a three-tiered sandstone fort, was constructed between 1807 and 1811 on Governors Island. In 2014, the NPS commenced a series of whitewash tests to better understand workability, appearance, and performance of nine different mixtures on interior sandstone and brick walls. Of the nine mixtures, one is a pure limewash, four were made according to 19th-century recipes, and three are proprietary products. This tour will discuss the history of Castle Williams, the experience of working with various whitewash recipes, and observations of performance over the last three years.

Address: Governors Island, New York Harbor

Travel: Approx. 1 hour 10 min. total (45 min. subway + 10 min. ferry ride + 15 min. walk) from conference venue


Tour 4: Keith Haring’s Mural: the Ongoing Story of “Once Upon a Time…”

Led by Harriet Irgang Alden, Conservation Director, ArtCare

Keith Haring (b. 1958 – d. 1990) was an American artist and social activist whose work reflected and shaped New York City street culture. Haring devoted much of his efforts to public works, and his iconic graffiti-inspired artwork can be found throughout the city and in museums worldwide. This event will enable participants to experience one of Haring’s most compelling murals, “Once Upon a Time”, painted nine months before his death from AIDS, for themselves. Paintings conservators from ArtCareNYC, formerly known as Rustin Levenson Art Conservation Associates, performed conservation interventions in 2011, 2012 and again in 2014 in response to two building renovations and alterations. This tour will feature a special presentation by paintings conservator Harriet Irgang Alden, who will provide an overview of the unique conservation challenges relating to the piece.

Note: This mural is graphic and provocative, and may offend some viewers.

Address: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Community Center, 208 West 13th Street, New York, NY

Travel: From conference venue, approx. 30 minutes on public transport + 5 minute walk


Tour 5: Metropolitan Museum of Art – American Wing Period Rooms and Decorative Arts

Led by Amelia Peck, Marica F. Vilcek Curator of American Decorative Arts and Manager of the Henry R. Luce Center for the Study of American Art

This tour will highlight several of our newly reinstalled eighteenth-century period rooms at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, including three that were repainted with hand-made oil paint after paint analysis.  We will discuss the evidence we found, and the decisions we made based on that evidence. We will also visit the Marmion Room, where the decorative paint scheme and faux marbling has been preserved since the late eighteenth century, and speculate on who might have painted the ornate program.  Then we will visit some of our late nineteenth-century rooms, many of which have complex decorative paint schemes, and finish with a viewing of the 1882 Worsham Rockefeller dressing room, replete with ceiling murals and hand-stenciled wallpaper.

Address: 1000 Fifth Ave, New York, NY

Travel: Approx. 20-30 minutes on public transport from conference venue.


Tour 6: The Lower East Side Tenement Museum: Conservation Highlights of the “Ruin” Apartments

Led by: Andrew Dolkart of Columbia University; Stephanie Hoagland Bond of Jablonski Building Conservation

The Lower East Side Tenement Museum was founded in 1988 to record and provide a historic perspective on the immigrant experience in New York City.  Located at 97 Orchard Street, the museum is a five story building that served as tenement housing from its construction in 1863 until 1935 when the apartments were closed.  During this time, the building was home to approximately 7,000 people from over 20 countries.  While some of the apartments have been restored to tell the story of specific immigrant families, others have been left as they were found.  These “ruin” apartments serve as a time capsule of immigrant life in America.  This tour will focus on the questions of how to preserve these apartments in a state of “arrested decay.”  This is not a typical tour given by the museum but a conservation tour, encompassing the examination of past testing programs and treatments for plaster, paint, and wallpaper.  We will look at those treatments that have stood the test of time and those that have not.

Address: 103 Orchard Street, New York, NY

Travel: Approx. 45-50 minutes on public transport from conference venue


Tour 7: House Paint Catalogs and other Treasures: Avery Architectural Library Archives with Curatorial Tour

Led by: Teresa Harris, Curator of Avery Classics

Please join us for a tour of Avery Classics, the rare book reading room of Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library at Columbia University. Avery Classics possesses an extensive collection of trade catalogs, an important primary source of information on building materials, supplies, decorative elements and industry trends during the 19th and early 20th centuries. An exhibition of American house paint catalogs curated by Judy Jacob and Teresa Harris will be on view, as well as a selection of international promotional materials for paint and wall coverings, including the Taliesin line of decorative fabrics and wallpapers designed by Frank Lloyd Wright for F. Schumacher & Co.

Address: 234 Avery Hall, Columbia University

Travel: on Columbia University campus (no travel required)



Tour 8: Merchant’s House Museum: a Study in Paint Archaeology

Led by: Emily Wright, Merchant House Museum; and Dr. Susan Buck, Conservator and Paint Analyst in Private Practice

The Merchant’s House Museum was built in 1832 and offers an unparalleled opportunity to see a house of the variety that thousands of New Yorkers sought to occupy as they expanded the great city nearly two centuries ago.  It is now the only such building available to visit, with early public, private and service spaces accessible, including an extensive bell system for calling servants and important paint evidence. It has remarkably intact interiors, with documented changes made by the Tredwell family who lived in the house for 100 years.  Paint research conducted by Susan L. Buck, working with architectural consultant Vincent Plescia, included paint archaeology to comparatively date physical changes, such as the early installation of gas lighting and reconfiguration of the cellar cooking and eating spaces.

Address: 29 East 4th Street, New York, NY

Travel: Approx. 45 minutes on public transport from conference venue


Tour 9: Ellis Island Immigrant Hospital: ‘Mothballed’ Buildings and the Promise of Preservation

Led by: John Hnedak, Deputy Superintendent of the Statue of Liberty National Monument

The Ellis Island Immigrant Hospital was the first public health hospital in the United States, and served as a detention facility for immigrants deemed unfit to enter the U.S. on their arrival. A complex of twenty-two structures spread over two man-made islands, the hospital opened in 1902 and operated until 1930. In the following decades it was left vacant and over time experienced severe deterioration. In the early 1990s, a massive project was undertaken to stabilize, or “mothball,” the hospital buildings: roofs were repaired, windows were covered and vented, and doors were locked to the public. Today, these mothballing interventions are now in need of repair. John Hnedak, Deputy Superintendent of the Statue of Liberty National Monument will lead the tour. He will describe the history of the site, mothballing efforts, and lessons learned to now go forward to ensure the preservation of these buildings.

Address: Ellis Island, New York Harbor

Travel: Approx. 1 hour 45 min. total (45 min. subway + 45 min. ferry + 15 min. walk) from conference venue


Tour 10: When Walls Talk: Immigrant Graffiti at Ellis Island

Led by: Geraldine Santoro, Museum Curator, Statue of Liberty National Monument

The Main Immigration Building on Ellis Island opened in 1900, and was the gateway for over 12 million immigrants entering the United States. Designed in the French-Renaissance style by the New York architectural firm of Boring and Tilton, the interior walls were faced with plaster which was initially left unpainted. These walls soon became covered with the names of immigrants, as well as drawings, poems, and short pieces of text. In 1903, walls were painted black, and regularly repainted until the building closed in 1954. In 2000, overpaint on some of the walls was removed to expose the graffiti. Damaged pieces of wall were saved as museum objects; some of these pieces are now on display. Geraldine Santoro, Museum Curator, Statue of Liberty National Monument, will describe the conservation treatments used for exposing and stabilizing the graffiti. She will also discuss how the graffiti is being interpreted and presented to the public, and how fragments in storage are being preserved. Depending upon accessibility, the tour will visit the storage area or visit prisoner graffiti in a former cell in another building (not open to the public).

Address: Ellis Island, New York Harbor

Travel: Approx. 1 hour 45 min. total (45 min. subway + 45 min. ferry + 15 min. walk) from conference venue


Tour 11: Callidus Guild: Handpainted Wallpaper Studio Tour

Led by: Gabriel Endres (Studio Manager) and Avery Gregory (Studio Coordinator)

Callidus Guild is a modern art for architecture studio based in Brooklyn, New York. A classical atelier of internationally trained artisans who are renowned for bridging fine art and visionary design, the Guild designs and installs bespoke surfaces and wallpapers in plasters, precious metals and handmade paints. Their capabilities range from jewel box powder rooms to commercial projects, and they have been recognized and featured in major design publications. They work closely with clients to collaborate in the design of surfaces that complement their vision. Through tooling, embedding and manipulating classical materials they create colors, patterns and textures to suit the most discriminating aesthetics. This tour will take attendees through the Callidus studio to observe the artisans at work, and to learn more about the challenges and considerations of custom architectural finishes for the contemporary client.

Address: 20 Lexington Ave, Brooklyn, NY

Travel: Approx. 1 hour on public transport from conference venue