Full time (36 hours a week)
Fixed Term Contract for 2 years
St Pancras, London
The British Library leads and collaborates in growing the world’s knowledge base. The Collection Care department, which comprises of some 40 people, is responsible for the care of one of the largest, richest and most diverse research collections in the world. Funding for this two-year post is secured from by external funds.
This is an opportunity for an experienced conservator to work in a small, busy team. You will be carrying out conservation and preparation treatments on fragmentary paper manuscripts in Tangut that are being digitised as part of this project, operating with minimal supervision. You must have the skills and knowledge to plan, manage and track your work to ensure that deadlines are met. You will also have the opportunity to work on Chinese scrolls from Dunhuang, under the supervision of an experienced conservator.
Conservation is needed to ensure adequate throughput for the digitisation of the Tangut material according to the project schedule. This is mainly previously unconserved and unnumbered material, currently completely unavailable and unknown to scholars. It came into the Museum/Library from Aurel Stein’s 3rd Central Asian expedition of 1913-16 and has remained in his original paper packets. There is an urgent need to make this material accessible for the first time.
You need to have either a degree in conservation or equivalent knowledge and skills sets, and practical hands-on experience in conservation of paper materials for digitisation and/or large-scale conservation projects; a broad knowledge of available conservation treatments within the field of paper conservation together with the ability to diagnose conservation problems and to develop and evaluate options for solutions. You should also have a high level of manual dexterity and the ability to treat fragile and delicate materials, together with knowledge of materials chemistry and the properties, behaviours and interaction of a wide range of organic and inorganic materials. A good knowledge of preventive conservation issues is also required.
For further details and to apply for this post see the British Library Careers website.