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Case Studies

For Museums & Heritage Organisations

Relocation of a major East London collection

Project management of the cataloguing, packing and removal of approximately 80,000 museum artefacts and artworks. Responsible for managing a team of six paid staff and ten volunteers and for liaison with all contractors. Work comprised project design, collections management, database modification and documentation and followed high conservation and recognised ethical standards. During the final six weeks items were boxed, wrapped or crated and barcoded prior to removal by a specialist contractor. In addition, over 200 items or groups of items were transferred to more suitable institutions as part of collections review and refinement and redundant tools and equipment were donated to local charities and organisations.

“I'd like to compliment you and your team on you labelling which is brilliant, the best I've seen!”
Liz Yamada, National Conservation Service

Cost: 15 months’ full-time work @ daily fee

The Friends of Wanstead Parklands

Research on relevant museum collections on behalf of the Friends of Wanstead Parklands in preparation for a major Heritage Lottery Fund bid.

Cost: £350

For individuals

Arranging the Auction of Mid-Century Paintings

Client had a small collection of paintings inherited from her parents who had purchased them in Paris. She wanted to sell them but had no experience of the art world.

SORT & SURVIVE researched different auction houses and found a specialist sale of mid century paintings and decorative art in East London, undertook all the administration and attended the auction with the client.

“Thank you so much for everything and for finding all of the paintings a home and for your perseverance... It has just been lovely working with you and thank you too for your kind sentiments - the auction day together was very memorable.”
Anon, Camden

Cost: £60 plus percentage of sales

Help with Family History

Client has a collection of photographs and family history papers dating back to the 19th century. She required advice on the best ways to store and organise individual items.

SORT & SURVIVE advised on suppliers of museum quality polyester sleeves for paper and photographic archives. Spent the day sorting and packing the material by family or individual and discussing how to prioritise the different types of records and memorabilia.

“Susan reassured me that I was doing the right thing with this archive so that it can be passed on to my children in a way that will to help them to understand their family history.”
MN, Buckinghamshire

Cost: £150

Finding alternative storage for a sculpture collection; sorting related papers

Client was spending an unsustainable amount each month with a specialist art storage company. The collection was moved to a more cost-effective store out-of-town that still offered stable environmental conditions.

Sorted and refilled papers belonging to her late husband and herself and undertook correspondence on the computer using email and Dropbox.

Cost: £750

Hanging 30 pictures in a two bedroom flat

Arrangement of pictures to show each in its best light and so they work well in each space. Grouping suitable pictures together and positioning them so they are level. Hanging of both original artworks and prints with suitable fixings.

Cost: £150

Re-homing items to reduce the cost of renting a commercial storage unit

Included furniture, pictures and household goods. Distributing pieces to family members. Selling to specialist dealers or to private buyers on eBay. Research on individual items when possible.

“Thank you so much for the detailed info you emailed me about the antique wooden library steps, it's wonderful to know the background! I have received them over the weekend and am really thrilled! They are perfect! Exactly what I wanted!”
DB, Devon

Cost: £60 one-off fee, plus 25% of sales proceeds

Placing an antique ceramic piece for sale with an international art auction house

“SORT & SURVIVE obtained advice and quotes from various auction houses and dealers and then liaised with the in-house specialist of the chosen company. She dealt with all paperwork, supervised collection from store and delivery to the auction house’s warehouse and attended the auction itself. She worked in a professional way at all times.”
NS and MS, Hampstead

Cost: £60 one-off fee, plus 25% of price raised at auction

Advice on clearing an artist’s studio

The options for preparing a collection of watercolours for sale. Possible ways of disposing of or re-homing studio props, fixtures and fittings.

“I found it useful to spend a couple of hours with Susan who helped me clarify what the best way forward was in the rather stressful situation of needing to move from the studio my late husband used for over 30 years.”
SB, Chelsea

Cost: £60

Sale of a collection of film posters and finding a home for VHS tapes and film journals

Sale of 5 original 20th century film posters. Donation of tapes and journals to two London-based academics.

Cost: £60 one-off fee, plus 25% of money raised through sales