During a field trip to the SFMOMA Conservation Department, I got to take a closer look at some of the museum’s permanent collection. This piece in particular, Lick and Lather by Janine Antoni, sparked an interest among the whole group. An artist’s use of ephemeral materials can present a curious challenge for conservators - when does the work become degraded? Luckily, this particular artist is still around for consultation. In one such case, the bust made of soap began to bead sweat. At that point the artist felt it necessary to replace the old bust with a new one.