Meet Joanna Conte—Restoration Tech

Joanna Conte is a Restoration Technician & Decorative Artist here at EverGreene. She joined us in July 2022 with a BFA from SUNY Purchase and after several years of working in Theater prop, scenic, and costume design across New York City. Now, Joanna is applying her artistic talent to decorative art projects, assisting with gilding, glazing, in-painting, and plaster repairs at higher ed, sacred spaces, and historic landmark restoration projects.

1) What inspired you to pursue a career in preservation?
My background is working in theatre, where a lot of the shows I’ve put on are lucky if they run for a month. Afterwards, for one reason or another, most of that hard work and art gets torn down and thrown right into the dumpster. So, switching to preservation work was refreshing to see how the work lasts. To have a hand in fixing something, making it shine again, and to know it will stay that way for years to come is what really drew me in.

2) What is your favorite EverGreene project or experience working in historic restoration?
Working on the Ballantine House has been a highlight so far. I never got tired of looking at all the beautiful, intricate details. It felt really good to be able to apply my knowledge of molding, casting and detail painting from my props background to my current work—a full circle moment.

3) How has combining your education and on-site work with EverGreene helped you advance your artistic skills?
Making theatre come to life is a very collaborative process. Transferring that mindset to my work at EverGreene has been the most important piece. The tips and tricks I’ve learned from working alongside talented artists and craftspeople have enabled me to hone and advance my own artistry. There is so much to learn from people that have decades of experience—absorb as much information from others as you can!

Thank you Joanna for sharing your journey with us!