Karena Morton

Read the staff profile for Karena Morton, Head of Conservation


Dr Karena Morton has been Head of Conservation since March 2017. She is responsible for leading and managing Conservation and Care of Collections across all four divisions (Folk life, Irish Antiquities, Art and Industry and Natural History). Karena joined the museum full time in 2008 when she was appointed Assistant Keeper in Conservation based at the Museum of Country Life, Mayo.

Prior to her appointment to the museum, she worked for CADW (Historic Environment Services, Wales) followed by fifteen years as a freelance conservator of archaeological finds and wall paintings, particularly ones of late medieval date. During this time she led or undertook some key heritage conservation projects, such as conservation of a series of Mesolithic fish baskets from Clowanstown, Co. Meath. Karena has a BA in Archaeology and History of Art, a BSc in Archaeological conservation and a Masters in Urban and Building Conservation. Her PhD. thesis was on Irish Medieval Wall Painting.

Karena has published widely in her research areas and has regularly lectured at national and international venues. In 2014 she was invited to Yunnan, China, to advise on the conservation of wall paintings. In 2015 she was awarded the Fleming Fellowship by St Louis University and spent time at the School of International Studies there. Karena, as part of her work for the National Museum, also contributes modules on aspects of archaeological conservation and museum environment to the BSc in Archaeological Science at IT Sligo and the MA in Museum Studies at University College Cork.