JP Brown, Regenstein Pacific Conservator

JP Brown graduated in Archaeological Conservation in 1986 and worked on the conservation of objects in England for two years before joining the faculty of the University of Wales at Cardiff.  He taught practical and preventive conservation at UWC until 1993 when he moved to the States to work as a consultant on the conservation of historic buildings including Independence Hall, the George Washington Mansion, and Virginia State Capitol. 

In 2002 JP joined the staff of the Field Museum working successively on micro-environmental control for preservation of collections, the move of oversize material to the CRC, and the conservation of the Kish excavation archive.  He was appointed Regenstein Conservator in 2009.

JP's research interests encompass object conservation methods, computer-based object documentation, non-destructive analysis of structures and materials, and preventive conservation.  His work with Field Museum Anthropology curators Gary Feinman and Ryan Williams on the origins of the mysterious Maya Blue pigment was picked by Archaeology Magazine as one of the top ten archaeological discoveries of 2008.

JP has just completed heading up a team of four Field Museum conservators to complete preparation for shipping out a loan of 140 Pacific objects to the Instituto Nacional de Antroplog’a e Historia in Mexico City.  The objects represent some of the finest Pacific specimens in the Field Museum and will be on display in Mexico in 2010.  His next project is to design and build storage housings for museum's collection of New Guinea Sulka Masks.


JP recently attended a workshop on small particle handling.  Read his blog post on a simple technique for cross-sectioning fibers.




JP Brown checks the condition of paint around the eye of a carved and painted wooden bird effigy from Papua New Guinea.