The webinar ”TVs in Art: Conserving Cathode Ray Tubes (CRTs)“
was organised
by The Institue of Fine Art, New York University.
Christine Frohnert of the Time Based Media Art, IFA, NYU compiled
a broad
program to the topic of CRT devices in art.
Over a hundred conservators and other enthusiasts joined the
webinars via Zoom.

The important topic was the conservation of CRT technology.
In the second half of the webinar, we gave a lecture on the history of Colorvac, our current projects and the necessary steps for the future.

It started with the formation of Colorvac, the founder Peter Draheim, who specialised in CRT gun renewal since the 1960s.
This was a common practice in that time.
It is also a good example for the change of the consumer market.
No one would contemplate on replacing or even rebuilding the display of their flatscreen today.
The CRT TV was conceived to be of a high value and had a wider range of service available.
Because of the technological change towards flat TVs, Peter and Christian Draheim ended their work on CRT picture tube renewal in 2008/2009.


Since the rebirth of Colorvac in 2015 many video art installations were restored and preserved for the future.

One of the key factors for this was that a new workshop was established and that the CRT gun replacement could be performed again.

The future challenges are tremendous. In order to rebuilt critical components, many complex industrial processes of a once world industry have to be translated into a smaller manufacture style of work.

The circle of expertise decreases with every farewell of a CRT specialists.

In modern society the CRT TV has disappeared.Young people do not know what a CRT is.

Collecting the present knowledge of the specialists back then is another pillar for preserving this art for the future.Only by doing that the next generation can build their own expertise and experience.

Our idea for long term conservation of analog video art:

The development of a universal electronic chassis fitting for every device and the matching instruction enabling the interested conservators to do the maintenance locally.
Only hardware that is designed for the analog signal flow enables the original software.

From the ecological point of view this method for future conservation is the most sustainable.

We envision functional CRT devices in video artworks all over the world, even in a hundred years.