UCLA/Getty Conservation Program

A graduate conservation training program focusing on the conservation of archaeological and ethnographic materials


UCLA/Getty Program Welcomes Visiting Graduate Researcher Caitlin Spangler-Bickell

The UCLA/Getty Program welcomes Caitlin Spangler-Bickell who will be joining us a Visiting Graduate Researcher through August 2017.  While at UCLA, Caitlin will be working with Professor Ellen Pearlstein and Christian de Brer, Director of Conservation for the Fowler Museum at UCLA. Caitlin is a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow with the Innovative Training Network NACCA – New Approaches in the Conservation of Contemporary Art . NACCA is a research consortium funded by the European Union with 15 PhD projects across Europe, each studying as yet under-explored aspects of contemporary art conservation. Caitlin is a PhD candidate with Maastricht University and is based at MUDEC (Museo delle Culture) in Milan working on a project entitled “Conservation of Contemporary Art and Ethnographic Materials: Relationships, Similarities and Differences“.

While in Los Angeles, she will be spending time with the UCLA/Getty Program and at the Fowler Museum studying what it means in practice to take an anthropological approach to conservation. Her research explores the dynamics between materiality and immateriality and the performative contexts of both cultural and artistic works – particularly altars and installations – and the challenge of addressing these issues in conservation practice.

Caitlin received her BA in Anthropology (Archaeology concentration) and French, Summa Cum Laude, from Saint Mary’s College of California and her MS in Anthropology, Summa Cum Laude, from KU Leuven in Belgium. In addition to conducting ethnographic and archaeological fieldwork, she has worked in various arts, culture, and natural history museum environments in the U.S., France, South Africa, and Belgium.


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UCLA/Getty Program Welcomes Visiting Scholar Dr. Pujun Jin

The UCLA/Getty Conservation Program welcomes visiting scholar Dr. Pujun Jin, who will be with us through November 2016.  During his time here, he will be working Dr. David Scott examining ancient Chinese bronzes. Dr. Jin joins us from the School of Materials Science and Engineering, Shaanxi Normal University, China.  He received his Ph.D. in Scientific History and Archaeometry from the University of Science and Technology of China. His current research focuses on the metallurgical examination of artifacts excavated from the site of Sanxidui dating to the Shang Dynasty.  He is also studying the lost-wax technique used to cast a bronze mou (cooking vessel) from the Ba Culture and the corrosion and conservation of ancient Chinese plated bronzes.

Pujun Jin

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UCLA/Getty Program Welcomes Mellon Fellow in Conservation Education Laleña Vellanoweth

The UCLA/Getty Program is pleased to welcome Laleña Vellanoweth as the Andrew W. Mellon Fellow in Conservation Education for the 2015-16 academic year.

Laleña is a Costume and Textile Conservator. She received her B.S. in Biochemistry and B.A. in Art from California State University, Los Angeles and her M.A. in Art History and Certificate in Conservation from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University. She has worked at the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Autry National Center, and Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

As part of her Mellon Fellowship, she will be researching diversity in art conservation and surveying parallel diversity programs for other museum fields. She will also be working on a research project on Californio costume, focusing on a technical study of three charro suits from the early nineteenth century, one of which was worn by Don Vincente Lugo, a member of one of the founding families of Los Angeles. Laleña will also give lectures on textiles and costume, including fiber identification and costume mounting.


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UCLA/Getty Program Welcomes Visiting Scholar Dr. Guofeng Wei

The UCLA/Getty Program welcomes visiting scholar Dr. Guofeng Wei, who will be working with us through January 2016. Dr. Wei comes to us from the Department of History, Anhui University, China.  He received his Ph.D. in Scientific History and Archaeometry from the University of Science and Technology of China. His current research focuses on the recipes and crafts of historical lime mortars of China, as well as a study on the application of traditional stick rice-lime mortar in conservation of cultural relics.  More recently, he carried out research studying the trace element characteristics of copper prills in slag from Tangjidun sites of copper smelting dating back to the late Shang Dynasty (ca. 1300 BC) in Anhui Province.  In addition he is studying the casting technology of bronze vessels dating from the late Shang Dynasty to Spring and Autumn Period (ca. 1300BC – 470 BC) from Zongyang County.

Dr. Wei will be providing lectures for some of our programs courses, as well as conducting his own research while he’s here.  He is currently giving two lectures on ancient metallurgy and metal casting in the course Conservation Laboratory: Metals II  (CAEM 239).

Dr. Guofeng Wei

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UCLA/Getty Program Welcomes Visiting Scholar Dr. Xiaoqi Wang

The UCLA/Getty Program is pleased to welcome visiting scholar Dr. Xiaoqi Wang for the 2013-14 academic year. Dr. Wang received her Ph.D. at the University of Science and Technology of China in conservation science and archaeometry (2005). Her dissertation research focused on the conservation of ancient shipwrecks and waterlogged materials with work undertaken in the conservation lab of the Romano-Germanic Central Museum, Mainz, Germany. Xiaoqi was a postdoctoral fellow (2006-2012) at Nanjing University in geophysics performing archaeometric research on Chinese archaeological glass beads and pigments dating between 220B.C.-600A.D. She serves as the Research Fellow in Department of Archaeology at Nanjing University, where she has also been teaching archaeology undergraduate and graduate students about archaeometry and conservation science since 2005. She was a visiting scholar at the University of Vienna, Austria (2001) and the Romano-Germanic Central Museum (2004-2005), made possible with funding from the University of Vienna and Romano-Germanic Central Museum respectively

During her time here, Dr. Wang will be working with UCLA/Getty Program chair Dr. Ioanna Kakoulli, as well as other colleagues in the UCLA/Getty Conservation Program and the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology. She will continue her research on beads and pigments focusing on the use of LA-ICP-MS, lead isotopic analysis and microscopy for their analysis. She is also focusing on ancient Chinese scroll paintings and hopes to connect with conservators, scientists and scholars on the identification of deterioration issues and solutions for preserving the paintings.



UCLA/Getty Program Welcomes Margo Delidow, Mellon Fellow in Conservation Education at the Conservation Center, NYU

The UCLA/Getty program welcomes Margo Delidow, Andrew W. Mellon Fellow in Conservation Education at the Conservation Center of the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. Margo is a sculpture conservator with a focus on contemporary art design and is co-owner of Whryta Inc. Conservation Studio in New York City. She received her BFA from the College for Creative Studies, School of Art and Design, Detroit Michigan and her M.A. and Certificate of Advanced Study in Conservation from the Art Conservation Department at Buffalo State College. She brings a unique skill set to the conservation profession as she possesses over 15 years experience of working with materials as a fabricator and moutmaker. Her comprehension of industrial processes, metal and woodworking were put to test as a research fellow in the Sculpture Conservation Laboratory of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). Her research at the museum focused on the materials and method of manufacture of architectural models, a subject that until Margo’s research has been largely absent from conservation studies. Margo developed and implemented exhibition and packing guidelines for architectural models that are now in use at the museum. She worked collaboratively with artists and curators to treat of works of Martin Puryear, Eileen Gray and Matthew Barney. Her recent research examines the nature of the collaborative process of art professionals in regards to the exhibition, preservation, and storage of contemporary art.

During her two weeks with us, Margo will be sitting in on lectures and practical sessions offered in our program, as well as observe the different teaching styles of our faculty. While she’s here we will be taking advantage of Margo’s expertise in contemporary art and mountmaking by having her offer lectures and a hands-on session in our courses. First up, Margo will give a presentation and lead a discussion on issues in the conservation of contemporary art, a topic which has many parallels to ethnographic objects conservation. Margo will also give a lecture on mountmaking and hold a hands-on session to teach us some basics of making mounts.

We’re excited to have Margo here and we all look forward to her teaching in our program!

Margo Delidow (left) and 1st year Alexis North (right) continue the discussion on issues in contemporary art conservation after Margo's presentation of case studies on the topic.

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UCLA/Getty Program Welcomes Dr. Caitlin O’Grady, Univ. of Delaware Mellon Fellow in Conservation Education

The UCLA/Getty program welcomes Dr. Caitlin O’Grady, Andrew W. Mellon Fellow in Conservation Education in the Art Conservation Dept. at the University of Delaware. Caitlin is an objects conservator with a specialty in archaeological materials and a conservation scientist with research interests in nondestructive analytical technologies and technical reconstructions of original manufacturing technologies and artifact deterioration to inform conservation. She received a B.A. with Honors in Art History with minors in Chemistry and Economics from Case Western Reserve University (magna cum laude), an M.A. in Art History and Advanced Certificate in Conservation from New York University, and, a M.S. and Ph.D. in Heritage Conservation Science from the Dept. of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Arizona. Her dissertation research focused on the use of portable x-ray fluorescence analysis for the interpretation and preservation of museum artifacts. Caitlin has also worked as a conservator on several excavations and is currently the managing director of conservation for the Kaymakçı Archaeological Project (KAP) in Turkey, which is a project run by Dr. Christopher Roosevelt and Dr. Christina Luke of Boston University.

As part of her Mellon Fellowship, Caitlin will be with us for two weeks learning about the structure of our conservation program and observing the different teaching styles of the faculty. She will also be lecturing and teaching in two classes. One lecture will focus on stone conservation and have students looking at different consolidants and adhesives used for stone. Caitlin will also be teaching about the desalination of ceramics and include a hands on session where students try out different methods for desalinating ceramics. In her first week here, she gave a lunch time talk at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology titled “Lost Walls/Murals Rebuilt: Interdisciplinary approaches to the Conservation of Preclassic Maya Wall Paintings from San Bartolo, Guatemala”. This talk is based on a current collaboration with Dr. Heather Hurst, Skidmore College, on the preservation and analysis of murals from the Maya site of San Bartolo in Guatemala.

We are excited to have Caitlin here and to have her teach in our program. We hopes she enjoys her time with us and her escape from the cold east coast weather (and she says she did)!