Kay Söderlund will talk about paper, how it is made, Western and Japanese/Chinese paper, and their different characteristics and uses.  She will also discuss what can and can’t be done to conserve paper, different adhesives and treatments –  bringing her extensive experience as a conservator to deepen our knowledge of this core element of the book

Kay Söderlund

KSoderlundKay Soderlund, Director of Preservation Australia, has worked as a conservator for over 35 years. With a Bachelor of Applied Science in the Conservation of Cultural Materials (1982) from the University of Canberra, she has worked at various institutions in NSW including The Australian Museum, the Powerhouse Museum, and the State Library of New South Wales where she headed the project to conserve several journals of the First Fleet. Kay has worked primarily in private practice since 1986, as well as working for some time with Museums Australia (NSW) – firstly as a conservator, then as Director. Preservation Australia is a boutique conservation business that specialises in paper conservation – including large format, works on paper, books, and photographs – as well as preventive conservation consulting, including Disaster Preparedness.  It also runs workshops in conservation areas throughout Australia and SE Asia, and has an archival products side of the business – Conservation Resources.

Joy Tonkin

joy 2019 cJoy came to bookbinding in the early 1990s.   She is a graduate of the University of Canberra in paper conservation and has studied in Ascona in Switzerland, Belgium and Italy.    Joy and John run a book arts business in Canberra.   They specialize in conservation and restoration of rare books, works of art on paper, and one-off fine designer bindings.   They are experienced teachers and offer a range of instruction in the book arts.   Joy exhibits nationally and internationally and her work can be seen in many international collections.


Tomorrow’s Past

Kathy Abbott

The history and the work of Tomorrow’s Past: to share about how and why the group formed, to show examples of historical paper and vellum structures in perfect condition (despite being roughly handled) and how this has influenced our work and working methods. To talk about the slow acceptance and appreciation of this slightly controversial group’s work and to bring actual examples of work made by the group for handling and examining.

A Remarkable Journey

Julie Sommerfeldt

Over 17 years training and working as a binder/restorer/framer/conservator in Australia and Europe – notable people, institutions and collections I have had the fortune to be involved with – from working in a Coptic Christian Monastery in the Egyptian desert to a trade bindery in London’s East End; Shakespeare’s First Folio and everything in between!


Things to consider when rebacking a cloth or leather binding: Honoring the Bookbinder

Karen Vidler

This talk focuses on some technical considerations when deciding to repair or reback a cloth or leather covered binding. This will include options for: board reattachment; spine treatments; and the selection and preparation of repair materials. These are options that will affect the final appearance and movement of the book. The final options chosen should be underpinned by honouring the intentions of the original bookbinder as much as client expectations.
Karen Vidler (PM, AICCM)


Floating Boards Binding Technique

Joy Tonkin

This demonstration will show the floating boards technique which is based on a ”Bradel Einband mit Schweben den Deckeln” and was developed by Brother Edgard Claes, a Belgium binder.    The textblock is sewn on tapes or cords supports which are attached to the textblock and are the only attachments – the boards “float” away from the textblock.   It is a binding style that offers extensive design possibilities and demands attention to the accuracy of measurements.