Contemporary Art has the characteristic of being made with a wide diversity of materials. In this plastic age many of the artists employ polymers to create their works, but do not consider the degradation that their art will suffer eventually.
This work presents the studies performed for improving the manufacture of a series of sculptures made of latex rubber that belong to the Museo Universitario Arte Contemporáneo (MUAC), UNAM, in Mexico City. These sculptures made by César Martínez are blow up and deflated continuously during their exhibition. Techniques such as Fourier Transformed Infrared (FT-IR), X-ray fluorescence (XRF) and Raman spectroscopies were used for characterizing the manufacturing techniques of the artist. Dynamical Mechanical Analysis (DMA) was carried out to correlate the mechanical properties with the raw materials.
These analyses provide a comprehensive understanding of the material and the main factors that affect the degradation of the pieces. The combination of these studies made possible to suggest a new methodology to the artist in order to improve the quality and therefore enlarge the lifetime of his work.