In Waswanipi we visited Cultural Coordinator Diane Cooper at the riverside location of the Waswanipi Culture Department. Diane’s previous museum training means she is well aware of the different risks to heritage collections. Insects are common threats, feasting on the proteins available in hides and furs. And strong light and UV radiation can cause fading and deterioration. Diane takes different measures to protect the collections in her care. To kill off active insect attacks, she places the affected artefacts in the freezer. To prevent light damage, she moves artefacts to darker areas of the building or places them under covers. Specialized knowledge is necessary so that freezing and shading are carried out in the correct way with artefact-safe materials.
|Diane Cooper showing us a moose hide top that suffered some light damage in the past. The top is now kept out of direct sunlight, under a cover.|
|Diane Cooper holding up a stretched beaver pelt with a moth problem, destined for treatment in the freezer.|
|Paul Dixon, showing us just one of his collections – boxes of back-issues of the Nation magazine.|