Conservator & Historian

About About Karen Lile, Conservator and Historian

With a focus on revealing the cultural and historical significance of objects, events, and pianos, Karen Lile approaches her work from sociological, anthropological, and contemporary cultural perspectives. Karen's multifaceted contributions to the fields of conservation, history, and conceptual art demonstrate her commitment to preserving cultural heritage and fostering interdisciplinary collaborations.

CONTACT KAREN EARL LILE
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As Conservator:

Karen Lile is a partner and co-founder of Piano Finders, where her expertise contributes significantly to the conservation of pianos built in the last two centuries. Working alongside Kendall Ross Bean, Karen is involved in the strategic planning and documentation to preserve the original sound design and appearance of these historical instruments. Her collaborative efforts extend beyond the physical preservation of pianos to encompass the ontological preservation of their cultural history. Karen has been instrumental in documenting over 3,500 pianos and has served as a forensic expert witness in cases involving stolen or lost instruments. As a dedicated scholar, she contributes to international academic peer-reviewed journals, shedding light on conservation practices for pianos and conceptual art connected to various art objects. She is a member of the International Network for the Conservation of Contemporary Art and an Advisory Council Member for the Treasure Island Museum.

As Historian:

Drawing from a rich heritage of genealogists and historians, Karen Earle Lile’s family commitment to preserving historical records spans generations and continents. Her extensive ancestral background, coupled with her grandmother's influence, instilled in her a passion for historical record-keeping and research. Karen's studies have taken her to genealogical vaults, Rare Book and Manuscript Libraries on university campuses and in private library collections worldwide. Her work as a provenance researcher and historian of pianos is complemented by her role as a commissioned piano appraiser for private and public educational institutions, insurance companies, collectors, CPAs, and attorneys.

As Conceptual Artist:

From 1996 to 2023, Karen served as the conceptual artist for the United States Postal Service's Building Bridges Special Postal Cancellation Series. Her conceptual art projects seamlessly weave together original historical research, conservation, and preservation efforts, integrating historical objects, fine art, music, and dance.

Karen Earle Lile's multifaceted contributions to the fields of conservation, history, and conceptual art demonstrate her commitment to preserving cultural heritage and fostering interdisciplinary collaborations.

 

CONTACT INFORMATION

Karen Earle Lile
Conservator & Historian
Website
Piano Finders Website
Email

Mailing address:
505 Montgomery St. FL 11
San Francisco, CA 94111

Phone:
925-360-3527

Learn More About Karen Earle Lile

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