Work with Rare Earth Magnets

Magnets are an old technology, known and used by the Greeks and ancient Chinese for navigation. However, in the field of Art Conservation they haave been little used until recently, relegated mainly for metal identification and for attaching numbers in photography. Using magnets as a reversible fastener has been slow to enter the field.

Spicer Art Conservation, LLC has been using and experiementing will the best means of using magnets to mount, storage and treat artifacts. Read our blog
Inside the Conservator's Studio for recent findings.

You can also read articles on the topic. (
"Defying Gravity with Magnetism" AICNews (Nov. 2010) vol. 35, 6:1,3-5., "The Re-Tufting of a Hunzinger Arm-Chair" NATCC, Quebec City, Canada, Fall 2009, and "An Alternative to Velcro? Upper edge hanging methods using rare earth magnets".)

If you are using magnets in your conservation work, I would be very interested in hearing more about your technique.
Click here to download an useful form to assist in a full recording of your created system. I am compiling systems that other conservators have used. So please send your idea back to me.

Hands-on Session at AIC's Annual Meeting in Indianapolis, IN. Read about the session on our blog.

Pasted Graphic
Creating magnetic strips to use for encapsulating.

Pasted Graphic 1
A tufted seat created with Neodymium rare earth magnets.