Taking care of collections

IPARC, in full International Platform for Art Research and Conservation, is a versatile, multidisciplinary conservation and restoration platform which was set up as a cooperative at the end of 2011 by five partners-shareholders who realised the potential of joining their respective expertise, knowledge and experience.

In order to achieve the highest quality standards IPARC works only with graduated Masters in Restoration.

Are you a private or public collection professional, collector or art lover? You can call on IPARC for the following services:

Conservation and restoration of art works
Works of art often demand a multidisciplinary approach when faced with restoration issues. Our internal project teams are put together in a flexible way to meet the specific needs of the project at hand while also maintaining its artistic integrity.
Our team offers the following specialisations: paintings (old, modern and contemporary), paper, visual media, wooden objects and furniture, stone (alabaster, plaster, terracotta and other hard materials), metal/precious metal, textile, polychrome sculptures and contemporary works of art. IPARC strictly follows the ICOM and ECCO guidelines when completing the assignments (www.icom.museum, www.ecco-eu.org). Training and life-long learning are central tenets for all employees.

Integrated Contamination Management (ICM®)
with ecological insect pest eradication
The humidity regulated warm air treatment used by ICM® is a method for treating a wide variety of materials against insects, from ancient to contemporary art. It is a 100% effective and eco-friendly way to treat various kinds of infestation. A full cycle of treatment requires only 24 hours for complete effectiveness what makes it a very good option for both quarantine and loans.
Customers can either opt for a mobile treatment integrated in a truck designed to treat large volumes onsite or choose treatment in the IPARC treatment chambers located at the service centres in Brussels and London.

Research and analysis
For public and private projects IPARC conducts (preliminary) research. This may also include a material-technical analysis, or additional art-historic and iconographic research, either or not in combination with a literature study.
The IPARC workshop also has a fully equipped state-of-the-art photo lab. Photos are made here before, during and after treatment. As well as object photos for publication purposes. The IPARC analyses comprise both microscopic and chemical analyses, but can also be done by means of multispectral imaging. These analyses can be conducted at the IPARC-lab or if so required onsite at the customer’s location.

These are the possibilities:

  • Stratigraphic colour analysis
  • Material-technical analysis
  • IRR (infra-red reflectography)
  • UV photography
  • X-ray
  • XRF analysis
  • Macro-XRF
  • RAMAN spectroscopy
  • GC/MS
  • Climatic test chamber
  • Chemical analysis
  • Microscopic analysis.

IPARC has recently expanded its services into the field of Macro XRF scanning and analysis which uses both X-ray and fluorescent spectroscopy. This non-destructive method offers a two dimensional image of the dispersion of chemical elements is ideal for studying hidden layers of paint, changes that have been made during the creation or revealing earlier restorations.  Macro XRF provides a unique insight in the creative process of the artist and is particularly relevant for authentication.

Collection services
There is an increasing demand from collectors – both public and private – for collection services. These include collection management (registration and digitalisation), specialised art storage, condition checks and reporting. IPARC offers all these services at its workshop and also on location.

Art storage in bonded warehouse
Our own art depot, ARTPORT, is located in Kampenhout, only twelve minutes from Zaventem airport and twenty minutes from Antwerp. ARTPORT accommodates 600 m2 workshop, lab and studio and also offers 2000 m2 of climate-controlled bonded warehousing (free port facility). This storage can either be short or long term, and is also suitable as disaster recovery storage. Booking of individual boxes or areas are possible, with individual access if necessary.

What’s in it for me?
Discretion and the collection’s safety are imperative to our work.
The collection services and storage are under one roof and come as an integrated whole. Works are only manipulated by conservators.
In the context of Hiscox Art Assistance the IPARC team is available 24/7 to Hiscox customers should a calamity occur.


Leen Gysen, Managing Partner IPARC