This study deals with fungi damaged photographic gelatin and disinfection methods. It is based on the conservation treatment of seven silver gelatin developing-out prints on baryta paper, belonging to the Historical Library of Paris (BHVP). These prints were water damaged. The emulsion has been weakened by flaking and hydrolysis of the constitutive gelatin. These damages are a consequence of fungal development on the emulsion.
When external conditions are not adapted to their growth, fungi will stay in dormancy waiting for more suitable external conditions to develop. Thus we considered the available disinfection treatment for photographs and decided to undertake further research and testing on the use of ethanol as an antifungal treatment before using it on the BHVP prints. This study was conducted at the Laboratoire Universitaire de Biologie et d’Ecologie Microbienne. The goal of the study is to determine a suitable method to apply a solution of deionised water and absolute ethanol (30:70 v/v) mixture in order to obtain a biocide effect on four fungal strains: Alternaria alternata, Aspergillus niger, Chaetomium globosum, and Penicillium brevicompactum. Three implementations were tested: solvent chamber, direct contact and direct contact followed by a mechanical removal. Different treatment times were tested for each method.
The deionised water and absolute ethanol mixture, applied for two hours in a solvent chamber, succeeded in inactivating the four tested fungal strains.
LUCAS_DENIEL_DANTIGNY_Disinfection of moulded silver gelatin prints with ethanol vapours_Topics in Photographic Preservation_2017