Disaster Recovery—Conservation of a Fire Damaged Collection
smoke damaged art restoration
Private Collection, Texas
RLA was contacted through a fine arts insurer to undertake the treatment of 24 sculptures and decorative artworks affected by a residential electrical fire. Consisting of marbles, bronzes, silver pieces, porous ceramics, and geodes, the works were covered with a thick layer of carbonaceous debris and soot. Some of the works had absorbed oily residues from charred materials. Removal of the soot and debris was performed in stages, beginning with vacuuming, followed by dry cleaning with polypropylene and soot sponges, ending with removal of wax coatings on the bronzes and solvent and detergent cleaning of geodes, marble sculptures, gilded metals, and porcelains. The conservation sequence was followed by a final report documenting each artwork’s details, treatment performed, and recommendations for storing and maintenance.
Reference available upon request