It is with a sad heart that one of our own has passed ... Frank Zuccari, Head of Art Conservation at the Art Institute of Chicago Museum (retired in 2018).

See article in the Chicago Sun Times:

and from the Chicago Tribune ...

Our Deepest Symphathy to the Zuccari Family.

He made a big impact in the conservation field and we will miss him dearly.

Our next "Zoom Meeting:

 Chicago Area Conservation Group


Midwest Regional Conservation Guild


Save the Date for a Virtual Meeting on Sept. 17, 2020



Midwestern Cultural Institutions Response to COVID-19


As we move into the 7th month of living with the COVID-19 virus, we are learning how to safely expand our lives outside of our homes, return to work and cautiously begin to make plans for the future.


Join us September 17 at 3:30 PM CST for the first joint meeting of the Chicago Area Conservation Group and the Midwest Regional Conservation Guild as we take stock of how our lives, our jobs, and our work has changed.  Panelists will each present information on their situation, followed by discussion.


Seth Irwin at Indiana State History Museum Governmental Institution, Co-Moderator

Julie Reilly at Intermueum Conservation Association Regional Center

Stephanie Spence at Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art Art Museum

Ann Lindsey at University of Chicago Academic Library

Anna Weiss-Pfau at Third Coast Conservation Private Practice

Susan Russick at Northwestern University Library – Co-Moderator


Please RSVP to Amber Schabdach to be sent a Zoom link.


Also, in the upcoming months, MRCG and CACG will be sponsoring a series of lectures throughout the fall and winter that you will be invited to virtually attend.  We look forward to this joint endeavor!

Many Museums have now started to open back up now (to the public):

MSI: August 1, 2020

Field Museum of Chicago: July 24, 2020

Art Institute of Chicago: July 30, 2020

Chicago History Museum: Opened sometime in July.

Adler: closed 'till further notice.

MCA: Open

Northwestern University Libraries continue to be closed; but are around if you need help: contact

Newberry Library is Open; check their website for hours.

Holocaust Museum (Skokie) opened on July 15 --- Go see RGB exhibit! Extended thru Jan. 3rd.

Please stay safe !!

Wear your mask and let us know how you are! We are in this together!

For SMSI Members and Friends,

Some helpful sites to get you through this Pandemic:


Those of us who missed Meggan's online presentation on dispersion staining, Here is the link:


Meggan's presentation is a great introduction to dispersion staining and is a step-by-step procedure for making your own dispersion staining objective.


Meggan instructs us to make sure that we have adjusted our microscope optics to Kohler illumination.

Instructions for setting up your microscope can be found in "Polarized Light Microscopy" * Check the index for Kohler illumination.


Sebastian Sparenga's presentation on Microchemistry Fundamentals is also on that webpage. Both Meggan's and Sebastian's learning sessions are on

the McCrone YouTube channel:


Check out Dr. McCrone's presentation on the Shoud of Turin. There are a lot of educational videos to help us learn more about microscopy during these hunkering down times; opportunity has knocked....

"The Mystery of the Shroud of Turin" with Dr. McCrone talk:

And also don't forget to see Bill Kurtis' interview with Dr. McCrone, dedicated in 2003 "Walter C McCrone: A New Explorer":

Latest Updates:




The Midwest Regional Conservation Guild and Chicago Area Conservation Group are very pleased to join forces this year to offer two programs, a virtual meeting and an online lecture series for this fall and winter.  Both programs will be free to all members of either MRCG or CACG.  The virtual meeting will consist of a panel discussion from conservators from different areas of the field.  The fall/winter lecture series will consist of eight stimulating online lectures representing a wide variety of conservation issues, disciplines, and subject matters.  For those wishing to join either MRCG or CACG please see the organizational links below.

September 17th, 2020 3:30 PM CT

Midwestern Cultural Institutions Response to COVID-19 Joint Symposium

Seth Irwin                              Indiana State Library (Governmental Institution, Co-Moderator)

Julie Reilly                             Intermuseum Conservation Association (Regional Center)

Stephanie Spence                Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (Art Museum)

Ann Lindsey                          University of Chicago (Academic Library)

Anna Weiss-Pfau                  Third Coast Conservation (Private Practice)

Susan Russick                       Northwestern University Library (Academic Library, Co-Moderator)


October 7th 2020   12:00-1:00 p.m. CT

‘Planning new spaces for book and paper conservation and audiovisual preservation: Procedures and lessons learned.

Whitney Baker - University of Kansas Libraries


October 21st 2020   12:00-1:00 p.m. CT

‘The Dead Christ Resurrected: the conservation treatment of a monumental painting

by Matthew Harris Jouett’

Andrea Chevalier and Wendy Partridge - Intermuseum Conservation Association


November 4th 2020   12:00-1:00 p.m. CT

‘Collaborative Conservation and the Renovation of the Field Museum's 70-Year-Old Hall of Native North America’ 

Stephanie Hornbeck - Field Museum

November 18th 2020   12:00-1:00 p.m. CT

‘Accepting Ambiguity and Subjectivity in Aesthetic Compensation: Ed Clark untitled 1962 a Case Study.’

Heather Galloway - Galloway Art Conservation


January 6th 2021   12:00-1:00 p.m. CT

‘UBOAT: The U505 Submarine: Conservation Giving Breath to Untold Stories’

Jane Foley - L. Liparini Studio & Third Coast Conservation, LLC


January 20th 2021   12:00-1:00 p.m. CT

‘Exploring Buddhist Manuscript production:  Materials and Merit.’

James Canary - Indiana University Lilly Library


February 3rd 2021   12:00-1:00 p.m. CT

‘Collaborative Study of a Roman-Egyptian Mummy Portrait at the Detroit Institute for the Arts’

Christina Bisulca, Kate Aguirre, Ellen Hanspach-Bernal, Aaron Steele - Detroit Institute for the Arts


February 17th 2021   12:00-1:00 p.m. CT

‘Revealing the Splendor of Audubon’s The Birds of America: The Materials, Techniques, and Conservation of a Masterpiece.’

Dr. Cathleen A. Baker -Conservation Librarian Emerita, University of Michigan - Proprietor, The Legacy Press


Chicago Area Conservation Group                                           


Midwest Regional Conservation Guild  


Details will be forthcoming about registering for each lecture to receive the Zoom link. 

Upcoming meetings for SMSI group :

September Virtual SMSI Meeting on ZOOM *


Friday, September 25th, 2020

 Meet and Greet: 6:30 PM; Presentation 7:00-8:00PM

 Microscopy: Art, Literature, Culture and Science

 Mr. Tony Havics, pH2, LLC

Also ...

Dr. Nick Petraco, our SMSI 2020 August Kohler award recipient will be joining us on line this Friday.

He has much experience with polarized light microscopy and it will be great to hear some of his stories.

Please join us for the "Meet and Greet" segment of the online meeting at 6:30!


for more info see "SMSI Meeting" in the above tab.

The Institute Needs Your Help!

URGENT: Help McCrone Today

Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19), all McCrone Research Institute programs and operations have been temporarily suspended and we have gone to an on-demand course schedule. Revenue has plummeted and for the first time ever we are asking for your help.


In response to this once-in-a-century crisis, McCrone's leaders are revitalizing and reenvisioning ways in which the Institute will continue to deliver microscopy education, research, and publishing.


Please make a gift today and learn about the McCrone Research Institute COVID-19 Preservation and Relief Fund via the GoFundMe Charity platform.


Your support will preserve McCrone Research Institute and the legacy of Walter and Lucy McCrone for current and future generations of microscopists. Your gift, at any level, is greatly appreciated.


Thank you,


Gary J. Laughlin, Ph.D.

(for more info click on "SMSI meetings" in the menu bar).

Northwestern University Library has been postponed the two demonstrations ("Synthetic Texture Fills (a.k.a. Cast Composites" and “Rolling Moisture Sandwich for Flattening Rolled Materials”) that was scheduled for March 18th due to the safety of preventing the spread of  COVID 19. 

A new date for these demos will be announced in the future for a rescheduled date, which could be a few months from now or well into the  2021 year? ...

 Renewal time for your CACG membership 2020 is anytime from now until 2021.  if you  want to renew or make any changes to your membership, please print out your form and mail it to Mary. Form available - "under Membership" of the menu bar above. Or can bring the membership form & payment to the CACG meetings and give to any of the committee officers.

Other related Chicago Conservation News:

Rachel Sabino has an interesting article on

• "It broke: Dispatch from a Homeschooling Conservator".

Other topics of Art Inst. of Chgo articles:

• "The Secrets of a Mummy Emerge" by Arico, McIlvaine, and Tom

• "Nighthawks as Hope" A Curator Muses on Edward Hopper & Crisis" by Oehler

• "Conservation: The Dilemma of Extending Life" by Molina

See all at:


Other interesting Links:

American Institute for Conservation

    McCrone Research Institute
     State Microscopical Society of Illinois
 International Preservation Studies Center (formerly known as The Campbell Center for Historic Preservation Studies) in Mt. Carroll, IL.

If you have any ideas or suggestions for future meetings, please let us know. Just call or email any of the CACG officers (Susan, Mary, Carol, Inez, Amber or Maria).

Our Past CACG Meetings:

Check out photos from our most recent tour of the Ed Paschke Art Center meeting.

Under Photo Gallery / "Ed Paschke Art Center tour"

To see Frances Willard's Bio or history background ; go to "CACG Meetings" Frances Willard meeting flyer or to their website:

Photos and description of our visit to the Frances Willard House Museum is now available for viewing. Click on "Frances Willard Museum visit" under Photo Gallery.


 Photos from our visit to the Field Museum's "Behind the Scenes" meeting. Under Photo Gallery / Field Museum's "Behind the Scenes".

Also you can see a video of "Undressing a Mannequin Timelaspe":

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