Dr Sonia O'Connor

PositionPost-doctoral Research Associate
LocationL20d, Richmond building
Department or DivisionArchaeological Sciences
Telephone+44 (0) 1274 236498
EmailS.OConnor@bradford.ac.uk

Teaching and Supervisory Responsibilities

Sonia contributes to undergraduate and postgraduate teaching in: conservation, materials identification and radiography at the University of Bradford and other universities in the UK.

She also runs international professional development courses at Bradford and abroad in the radiography of cultural material and the identification of osseous and keratinous materials.

Biography

Sonia O’Connor joined the University of Bradford in 1995 to undertake contract conservation, teaching and research.

She has worked in archaeological conservation since 1976, when she was awarded a Diploma in Archaeological Conservation (with distinction) at the Institute of Archaeology, University of London.

She was Assistant Conservator at the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich; Assistant Experimental Officer and Conservator for Rescue Archaeology in Wales whilst at the Department of Archaeology, University College Cardiff; and rose to Deputy Head of Conservation at the York Archaeological Trust.

She has experience in project management, archaeological fieldwork, managing conservation laboratories, teaching and training.

She has been the lead conservator on a number of archaeological projects of international importance including the recovery, investigation and conservation of the Ferry Fryston Iron Age chariot and has published extensively on a range of conservation, archaeological and related topics.

Professional Activities

  • Accredited conservator-restorer by the National Council for Conservation-Restoration (ACR)
  • Fellow of the International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (FIIC)
  • In recognition of her work in radiography Sonia received the 2002 Nemet Award from the British Institute of Non-destructive Testing (BINDT), the professional body for the non-destructive testing and evaluation industry. She was both the first non-engineer, and the first woman, to receive this award

Research Areas

Sonia's research areas include the identification, conservation and decay of osseous and keratinous materials, the fabrication of iron mail and radiographic imaging of cultural material. Sonia's research in this area has been utilised widely, in particular within the (American) Society for Historical Archaeology’s Research Resources web pages ‘Conservation FAQs and Facts’.

  • Pictures of bone and antler
  • Pictures of tortoiseshell, horn and plastics

In 2003 Sonia began a five-year research project into the use of X-radiography in the study and conservation of textiles. She was working in collaboration with Mary M Brooks of the Textile Conservation Centre, University of Southampton.

Her work was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Research Centre for Textile Conservation and Textile Studies; a partnership between the Universities of Southampton, Bradford and Manchester. Sonia and Mary have jointly authored a book on this new field of cultural materials radiography, entitled X-Radiography of Textiles, Dress and Related Objects, which was published by Elsevier (Oxford) in 2007.

Downloadable pdfs

Some of Sonia's publications are available to download as pdf files.

UKIC paper on the identification of bone, ivory, horn etc (O'Connor 1987)

Ferry Fryston Iron Age chariot recovery and conservation (O'Connor 2007)

Publications

  • O'Connor, S. in press. The radiography of metal finds. In M. Corfield (ed.) Monograph on archaeological X-radiography: London: English Heritage
  • O'Connor, S. & D. R. Brothwell in press. The application of computerised axial tomography (CAT) systems to the investigation of archaeological finds. In M. Corfield (ed.) Monograph on archaeological X-radiography: London: English Heritage
  • Boyle, A., T. Evans, S. O'Connor, A. Spence & M. Brennand 2007. Chapter 4: Site D (Ferry Fryston) in the Iron Age and Romano-British Periods. In F. Brown, C. Howard-Davis, M. Brennand, A. Boyle, T. Evans, S. O'Connor, A. Spence, R. Heawood and A. Lupton (ed.) The Archaeology of the A1 (M) Darrington to Dishforth DBFO Road Scheme: Lancaster Imprints 12. 121-159. Lancaster: Lancaster Imprints
  • Brown, F., C. Howard-Davis, M. Brennand, A. Boyle, T. Evans, S. O'Connor, A. Spence, R. Heawood & A. Lupton (ed.) 2007. The Archaeology of the A1 (M) Darrington to Dishforth DBFO Road Scheme. Lancaster Imprints 12. Lancaster: Lancaster Imprints.
  • Buckberry, J. L. & S. O'Connor 2007. Radiography in Palaeopathology: Where next?. In S. R. Zakrzewski and W. White (ed.) Proceedings of the Seventh Annual Meeting of the British Association for Biological Anthropology & Osteoarchaeology: British Archaeological Reports International Series 1712. 105-110. Oxford: Archeopress
  • Garside, P. & S. O'Connor 2007. Assessing the risks of radiographing culturally significant textiles. E-Preservation Science 4: 1-7.
  • O'Connor, S. 2007. Appendix 1: Recovery and conservation of the chariot burial. In F. Brown, C. Howard-Davis, M. Brennand, A. Boyle, T. Evans, S. O'Connor, A. Spence, R. Heawood and A. Lupton (ed.) The Archaeology of the A1 (M) Darrington to Dishforth DBFO Road Scheme: Lancaster Imprints 12. 453-462. Lancaster: Lancaster Imprints
  • O'Connor, S. & M. M. Brooks 2007. X-Radiography of Textiles, Dress and Related Objects. Oxford: Elsevier.
  • Edwards, H. M. G., R. H. Brody, N. F. N. Hassan, D. W. Farwell & S. O'Connor 2006. Identification of archaeological ivories usinf FT-Raman spectroscopy. Analytica Chimica Acta 559: 64-72.
  • Brooks, M. M. & S. A. O'Connor 2005. New insights into textiles: the potential of X-radiography as an investigative technique Scientific Analysis of Ancient and Historic Textiles. In R. Janaway and P. Wyeth (ed.) Postprints of AHRC Research Centre for Textile Conservation and Textile Studies First Annual Conference: 168-176. London: Archetype Publications
  • Edwards, H. G. M., S. E. Jorge Villar, N. F. Nik Hassan, N. Arya, S. O'Connor & D. Charlton 2005. Ancient biodeterioration: an FT-Raman spectroscopic study of mammoth and elephant ivory. Anal Bioanal Chem 383: 713-720.
  • O'Connor, S. & M. M. Brooks 2005. Making the invisible visible: the potential of X-radiography as an investigative technique for textile conservation decision making. In (ed.) Preprints ICOM-CC 14th Triennial Meeting 2005: 954-62. The Hague: London
  • O'Connor, S. & M. M. Brooks 2005. Looking into the past: the potential of x-radiography as an investigative technique for archaeological and ethnographic textiles. In (ed.) Preprints North American Textile Conservation Conference, Recovering the Past: The Conservation of Archaeological and Ethnographic Textiles, 2005: 87-98. Mexico City: NATCC
  • O'Connor, T. & S. O'Connor 2005. Digitising and image-processing radiographs to enhance interpretation in avian palaeopathology. In G. Grupe and J. Peters (ed.) Documenta Archaeobiologae 3: 69-82. Rahden: Verlag Marie Leidorf
  • Anderson, T., S. O'Connor & A. R. Ogden 2004. An early eighteenth century denture from Rochester, Kent, England. Antiquity 78: 1423-1429.
  • Brooks, M. M. & S. A. O'Connor 2004. Revealing the hidden: the X-radiography of textiles. National Preservation Office e-Journal, Nov 2004, British Library
  • Boismier, W. A., D. C. Schreve, M. J. White, D. A. Robertson, A. J. Stuart, S. Etienne, J. Andrews, G. R. Coope, M. H. Field, F. M. L. Green, D. H. Keen, S. G. Lewis, C. French, E. Rhodes, J.-L. Schwenninger, K. Tovey, R. E. Donahue, M. P. Richards & S. O'Connor 2003. A Middle Palaeolithic site at Lynford Quarry, Mundford, Norfolk: Interim statement. Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society 69: 315-324.
  • O'Connor, S. 2002. Brain pseudomorphs: grey matter, grey sediments, and grey literature. In K. M. Dobney and T. P. O'Connor (ed.) Bones and the man: 41-50. Oxford: Oxbow Books
  • O'Connor, S. & H. Duncan 2002. The bone, antler and ivory artefacts. In I. Roberts (ed.) Pontefract Castle Archaeological Excavations 1982-86: 300-308. Leeds: West Yorkshire Archaeology Service
  • O'Connor, S., J. Maher & R. Janaway 2002. Towards a replacement for xeroradiography. The Conservator 26: 100-114.
  • O'Connor, S. & J. Maher 2001. The digitisation of x-radiographs for dissemination, archiving and improved image interpretation. The Conservator 25: 3-15.
  • O'Connor, S. 2000. Worked bone object with copper alloy rivets. In V. Fiorato, A. Boylston and C. J. Knüsel (ed.) Blood Red Roses, The Archaeology of a Mass Grave from the Battle of Towton AD 1461: 33. Oxford: Oxbow Books

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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