Treatment of an extraodrinary artwork
Lion and Tiger Art Conservation is happy to share with you, one of our recent conservation projects. It was a unique piece of art - a 19th century fire screen with taxidermy hummingbirds by the famous Henry Ward, that was exhibited at the PAN Amsterdam 2019.
Because of the fragility of the artwork, with its delicate case and valuable birds, the treatment had to be done in situ in the gallery of Zebregs&Roell at Keizersgracht 541 in Amsterdam. This was a great opportunity for the gallery visitors to watch the treatment happening. We loved this almost magical place, full of extraordinary pieces!!
Beside some minor condition issues on the case, the work was in excellent condition. The gilded case had minor ornament losses and was re-gilded in recent years, giving it an unnaturally new appearance, lacking the patina of time. All the losses were filled or reconstructed using a natural gesso. Retouching was carried out using reversible, conservation grade materials. The final and most fun part, was to work on the gilding!
Detail of the gilded frame before treatment (upper image) and after treatment (lower image).