Object and materials conservation

Karibari Board Making with Ranson Davey

Ref: OM1605


Course cancelled - scroll down for other


A wide choice of primary training is available in this country in aspects of object care. However, there are relatively few opportunities for conservation professionals to find specialist training in traditional skills and enhance their knowledge of materials and techniques. West Dean College has developed a series of short courses aimed at meeting this training need. This course is designed to introduce the student to the construction, fabrication and use of the karibari (Japanese drying board) through the practical experience of making a board. The four-day programme also covers the use of traditional Japanese materials, tools and techniques, and the properties of Japanese papers. Working in teams of two participants will make their own boards comprising a wooden lattice core (100 x 60 cms) covered with 8 layers of handmade Japanese kozo (mulberry) paper, with the top layer coated with a traditional waterproofing agent kaki-shibu. Instruction in the preparation of wheat starch paste by cooking, sieving, mashing and diluting, and the use of traditional pasting, wetting and smoothing brushes will be essential components of the course; as will the use of Japanese rulers, knives, spatulas and awls. At the end of the course you will take the board away with you. For further information about the course, please contact the Course Organiser: +44 (0)1243 818219 or cpd@westdean.org.uk


Ranson Davey

OMC - Course Leader

Ranson is currently a Senior Paper Conservator at the National Gallery of Ireland in Dublin.

He previously worked for the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Australia, the Area Museum Service for South-Eastern England and North West England. For six years he was a Senior Lecturer on the MA Conservation Programme for Works of Art on Paper at the University of Northumbria.

He has given courses on the construction and use of Japanese drying boards in Australia, the UK and Ireland, after doing an ICCROM course with Mr Masuda in Rome and a course on the Conservation of Japanese Folding Screens with Mr Suguira of The Freer Art Gallery, in Hawaii. Further experience was gained working with oriental scroll-mounters in Sydney and through conserving folding screens in collections in Australia and the UK.


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

Courses of interest