The National Endowment for the Humanities has announced the funding of the California Inclusive Preservation Program, an initiative of the Balboa Art Conservation Center (BACC), the only nonprofit regional conservation center in the western region.
The $345,224 award is one of nine granted under the NEH’s Preservation and Access Education and Training Program, and is welcomed news for the San Diego based nonprofit, which is committed to shifting the way regional conservation centers engage with collections and communities. As part of this shift, BACC has launched the California Inclusive Preservation Program which fulfills its vision of supporting training and education opportunities for stewards of cultural heritage in the state, focusing on rural, BIPOC, and veteran collections.
The California Inclusive Preservation Program (CIPP) will work with community and institutional partners to grow collections care knowledge and access throughout California through collaborative and accessible preservation training. It will provide virtual and in-person learning opportunities that are responsive to the needs of California’s humanities collections, serve communities and collections historically excluded from preservation services, and create a network of collections caretakers that will continue to sustain and broaden the scope of this necessary work.
Humanities collections within the state are incredibly diverse, and the need for preservation training among collections staff is ongoing. CIPP will work to eliminate barriers to access for some of the state’s most vulnerable institutions and collections and support heritage caregivers that reflect the diversity of California’s collections. The vision of CIPP is supported by a network of institutional partners throughout the state that will be essential in program delivery:
Turtle Bay Exploration Park and Museum, Redding, CA; Fresno Art Museum, Fresno, CA; Cheech Marin Center for Chicano Arts and Culture at Riverside Art Museum, Riverside, CA; Oakland Museum of California, Oakland, CA; Morris Graves Museum of Art, Eureka, CA; and Santa Barbara Historical Museum, Santa Barbara, CA.
The project is being funded, in part, by NEH’s special initiative, American Tapestry: Weaving Together Past, Present, and Future due to its ability to emphasize the role of the humanities in tackling contemporary social challenges.
BACC Executive Director Leticia Gomez Franco notes, “Accessible training opportunities are essential for the long-term preservation of California’s collections. The state’s humanities collections are key in telling the stories and uplifting the voices of those who have historically been silenced. The lack of access to conservation services and inclusive preservation knowledge puts many of these collections and the intangible values they embody for their communities at risk.
The California Inclusive Preservation Program is a testament to BACC’s unwavering commitment to democratize conservation knowledge and resources and center community. I am honored that in its winning year, it was additionally identified with aligning with NEH’s American Tapestries, an initiative that attests to the need for addressing equity and inclusion in our nation’s cultural heritage investments.”
About Balboa Art Conservation Center
The Balboa Art Conservation Center (BACC) provides art conservation and cultural preservation services for cultural institutions and the general public. The San Diego-based nonprofit is one of only nine regional nonprofit art conservation organizations in the country and the only one in the western region. Founded in 1975, BACC provides art conservation and cultural preservation services to cultural institutions and the general public, focusing on the care of works of art, cultural objects, and historic artifacts, technical imaging, and analysis while also providing educational opportunities for emerging conservators. Learn more at bacc.org.
About National Endowment for the Humanities
The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) is an independent federal agency created in 1965. It is one of the largest funders of humanities programs in the United States. The Endowment awards grants to top-rated proposals examined by panels of independent, external reviewers.