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Monona Rossol is a chemist, artist, and industrial hygienist. For more than 20 years, she has been an industrial hygienist specializing in visual arts hazards. She is the founder and president of ACTS (Arts, Crafts and Theater Safety), a not-for-profit corporation dedicated to providing health and safety services to the arts. A highly regarded, internationally sought-after consultant, trainer, and lecturer, she has worked with many schools, corporations, and businesses. She is the author or co-author of six books, including The Health and Safety Guide for Film, TV & Theater and Overexposure: Health Hazards in Photography, both published by Allworth Press. She lives in New York City.
It is now widely recognized that the supplies commonly used by artists can be highly toxic. In fact, they are regulated under an amendment to the Toxic Substances Control Act. The author, herself an artist and a chemist, has completely revised her first edition of this guide to handling such substances (Allworth Pr., 1990), a highly important work for any artist, craftsperson, or teacher in the arts. Rossol covers solvents, pigments and dyes, metals and metal compounds, minerals, and plastics. She discusses their relationships to diseases of the skin, eyes, respiratory system, heart and blood, nervous system, liver, kidneys, bladder, and reproductive system. This is more than just an alarming catalog of hazards, however; the book is largely devoted to practical precautions for various media, including painting, printmaking, textiles, glass, photography, and smithing. This comprehensive guide is highly recommended for any artist's studio or art teacher's classroom and for all libraries that serve those in the arts and crafts.-Daniel J. Lombardo, Jones Lib., Amherst, Mass.