18-22 September 2023
In 2020, when we finished the design of the ICOM-CC València 2023 candidacy, sustainability was already a major concern for most people. Ecological and economic sustainability had been discussed since the last decades of the 20th century, while sustainability as a guiding principle in conservation had been highlighted at least twenty years before. However, a pandemic made it painfully evident that we humans are just a gear in a much more complex and delicate physical, biological and cultural mechanism.
Unavoidably, the uncertainties that spread around the world also clouded the future of València 2023. The 19th ICOM-CC Triennial Conference, to be celebrated in Beijing in 2020, was successfully transformed into a virtual event (as discussed by Dr. Qinglin Ma here). Week after week, the Valencia NOC struggled with the dilemma of whether to organize a virtual, online meeting, or an in-person meeting. Finally, in the last months of 2021, when the strength of the pandemic was dwindling, we decided to make València 2023 a presential meeting. It was a risky move back then, but it seems that it was the right move. Online meetings have (forcefully) become increasingly popular in the last years, and they do have some advantages. However, the sheer experience and the possibilities of in-person meetings for sharing information, networking, learning —and having fun in the process— are just better. Organizing an event of this kind involves a huge amount of work, but such work will allow the participants to, e.g., share a coffee with a colleague with common interests, try a new tool firsthand, or, climate change permitting, feel the Mediterranean sun on the skin.
Thanks to many people, including my colleagues on the National Organizing Committee, the ICOM-CC Directory Board, the registered participants, the volunteers, the professionals hosting the technical visits, the 40+ conservation companies and institutions participating in the trade fair, and, of course, the private and institutional sponsors supporting the event, we can already tell that València 2023 is going to be memorable. Almost one thousand professionals from more than 60 countries will have the opportunity to meet and chat and learn and share experiences with each other, in a unique, unforgettable venue.
Welcome to València 2023.
It is my great pleasure to welcome you to the 20th ICOM-CC Triennial Conference. We will be hosted by our partners Universitat Politècnica de València in the stunning city of Valencia, Spain.
The 20th Triennial Conference of the International Council of Museums Committee for Conservation (ICOM-CC), will attract around 160 international speakers and about 900 delegates, including conservators, scientists, historians and art historians, curators, librarians, archivists, students, collection manages and directors from the world’s leading cultural heritage institutions and the private sector.
We look forward to welcoming you to Valencia, where we will discuss current issues in conservation, collection care and related museum management. Our conference will cover a broad range of topics that are the focus of our twenty Working Groups, including sustainability from many vantage points. This will be an exciting chance to meet and debate in-person in a beautiful campus surrounding and in a city full of amazing collections.