A few simple steps you can take to protect your collection
Here are seven straightforward, time-tested ways that you can keep your collection healthy and safe. Consider this the starting point for a comprehensive program of collection care.
Keep an inventory
This is perhaps the most critical step to caring for your collection. By knowing what you have, where it is located and some key data about each work you can begin to make well-informed decisions about what steps to take next in caring for your collection. Not sure which information to record? Following ICOM’s ObjectIDTM standard is great place to start.
Get it appraised
With a reliable inventory you can begin the process of appraising your works. Even if you do not expect to sell your works, placing a value on each work is fundamental to keeping your insurance coverage at the appropriate level. And in a market where prices change frequently, you will want to make sure you re-appraise regularly.
Schedule with your insurer
With an inventory and accurate values for your objects, you can provide your insurer with a schedule of items. This helps them verify that you are protected in the best way possible. In some cases scheduling can improve the outcome of claims and other activity under your policy.
Have installation hardware professionally assessed
Hooks, rings and cleats can degrade over time and hanging hardware that has been with an item for decades – especially old picture wire – could be ripe for a failure. Though hidden out of sight, these little fixtures, if not attended to, could be the catalyst for your next insurance claim. We recommend annual inspection of hardware which is why we make it an important step on our Care Consultation service.
Get to know your fine art storage facility
You store your work at a trusted storage facility, but how much do you know about that facility? A good provider will be proud of their professionalism and will be glad to show you how items are processed and stored, give you with a tour of the facility or furnish you with a facility report.
Establish an emergency plan
We recommend working with an experienced professional to craft and implement a comprehensive plan. The simple act of considering how to manage your collection through an emergency a step in the right direction.
When these tasks are done your collection will be in a safer, more secure position and you will be armed with knowledge and planning that will inform its ongoing care.