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Short biography

Emily MacDonald-Korth is a professionally-trained art conservator, a specialist in the scientific analysis of art and architectural finishes, a conservation educator, and Founder of two companies that innovate at the intersection of art and science. An inventive problem-solver and creative data communicator with an energetic focus on the union of art, science, data, and preservation, she has over 20 years of experience as an art world professional. MacDonald-Korth created Longevity Art Preservation LLC, a laboratory for conservation and forensic analysis of art; she also invented and co-patented Art Preservation Index®, a patent-pending rating system for fine art, for which she was a finalist in two entrepreneurial competitions. Her company has been hired to carry out scientific analysis of paintings by masters such as Warhol, de Kooning, Basquiat, Dalí, and Picasso toward authentication; large-scale built heritage analysis projects on works by Frank Lloyd Wright, Richard Neutra, Miami Marine Stadium, NPS sites, and for the City of Coral Gables; and conservation of artworks by Victor Vasarely, Frida Kahlo, Damien Hirst, and more. Recently, MacDonald-Korth made a major discovery of a previously unknown Basquiat technique involving colorless UV-fluorescent drawing and inscriptions, and is now a leader in a current University of Delaware-based Basquiat and Warhol technical research project. In her previous positions, including the Getty Conservation Institute (Los Angeles), MacDonald-Korth pioneered new technologies for the field while contributing to and leading high-profile projects such as conservation of wall paintings at the Forbidden City, the archaeological site of Herculaneum, and David Alfaro Siqueiros’s monumental public mural, América Tropical. MacDonald-Korth is the recipient of several prestigious awards, grants, and fellowships; she is widely published, a prolific public-speaker and educator, and has been featured in numerous media outlets such as the BBC, The Atlantic, Smithsonian Magazine, The Art Newspaper, Vice, Miami Herald, Artnet News, and was a guest art science specialist on the BBC television program Fake or Fortune. MacDonald-Korth is a regular lecturer for the graduate conservation program at University of Delaware and professional conservation organizations including the American Institute for Conservation and the Association for Preservation Technology. She received her MS from the Winterthur/University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation, with a certificate in the Conservation of Paintings; she also holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Pratt Institute (Brooklyn, NY). She is currently the President and Chief Conservator-Scientist at Longevity Art Preservation in Miami, Florida.


Emily MacDonald-Korth examines historic paint under a stereomicroscope in the Longevity Art Preservation laboratory


MacDonald-Korth carries out pigment analysis on a de Kooning painting using XRF spectroscopy for the BBC television series Fake or Fortune? 

Edited Image 2013-11-30-16:2:18

MacDonald-Korth works on graphic condition documentation of 12th-century wall paintings under the gaze of a 30-foot polychrome Buddha statue at the Giant Buddha Temple called the Fengguosi in Yixian, China

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