Material Matters

Case components include:

  • high-density polystyrene
  • fabric (generally 100 percent cotton)
  • UMDF (ultralight medium-density fiberboard)
  • archival rag board (for mounting)
  • silicone gaskets
  • Plexiglas
  • Komacel (a PVC [polyvinyl chloride] sheet)

Since cases are typically made to accommodate specific objects and galleries, storing and reusing them are not always possible.

Cases are used for the display and protection of objects in museum galleries. The first consideration in choosing the construction materials for a particular case is the preservation of the artwork it will hold; next, designers consider questions of aesthetics, cost, and environmental impact.

The wall case for the sugar bowl and silver hat displayed in Nature’s Nation was made of various materials shown here.