(PhD Studentship available at AUB http://www.modip.ac.uk/resources/PhD-Studentship)
MoDiP was pleased to organise a meeting of the Plastics Subject Specialist network made possible by Arts Council England funding. It took place on Thursday 24 January on HMS Belfast, launched in 1938, which was a wonderfully engaging venue. We had a lovely pair of low-ceilinged officers' mess rooms with urea formaldehyde light switches and formica covered walls.
There are also artefacts made from the same plastics accompanied by photographic details to help you know what to look at and on the back of the sheet an explanation of what you might have deduced from the artefact and how it could have contributed to the identification of how or of which plastic it was made.This is important not only in terms of documenting the collection to a high standard but also because different plastics need different conditions and how they are looked after can seriously affect their life expectancy.
It was an interesting and enjoyable day thanks especially to the input from the Imperial War Museum. People certainly welcomed the idea of such a toolkit and there were many constructive criticisms in terms of materials that are missing and how it can be made more user friendly. These will be worked on and then the kit will be made available also on line and trialled again.
|Delegates trialling the toolkit|
The Plastics SSN would like to thank members of the Plastics Historical Society who attended the meeting and shared their expertise with less expert delegates, and especially its Chairman, Steve Akhurst for supplying most of the objects for the toolkit. It would also like to thank the Imperial War Museum for providing such an enabling venue for the event and, of course, Arts Council England for providing the funding for production of the toolkit.
Head of the Museum of Design in Plastics