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Save Your Stuff Blog

Posts Tagged ‘art preservation’

Collectibles, Heirlooms, and Preserving Memories

Monday, August 2nd, 2010

 

This lovely alabaster sculpture is a treasured heirloom from the owner’s mother. It was originally bought in the 1920’s in Florence, Italy and was passed down from mother to daughter.  Sadly, due to poor packing and inept storage, the center section broke into several pieces.  This greatly distressed the owner, as this heirloom was very precious to her.

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Damaged Art And A Detective Story- A Japanese American

Friday, June 11th, 2010

This just came in the lab this morning. A very nice portrait of a Japanese American from 1944 in oil. Why it would be trimmed of its edges in such an ugly manner can only be explained by the painting being pulled from its frame, cut unceremoniously off its stretcher bars then rolled up and a hurried departure. Was the owner fleeing a natural disaster? Or maybe it was the social difficulties for Japanese Americans in 1944 when the USA confined American Citizens to concentration camps. In that desperate time, people fled with few possessions, stashed stuff in storage for, hopefully, later retrieval. We have done a lot of work for the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles over the years and they tell a heroic compelling story. (http://www.janm.org).

Damaged by being rolled up.

Damaged by being rolled up.

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Earthquake in China – Prepare Your Home and Workplace- 4 Tips

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

The reports from China about the massive earthquake once again remind us of the every increasing activity that puts our homes and businesses at risk. You realize, of course, that with an earthquake you also have broken pipes, water damage and mold. For those of you NOT in earthquake country, think again! A hurricane or tornado rattles and shakes you up in the same way.

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Flooding and Water Damage on the Lower Mississippi: Saving Art and Memorabilia: 8 Tips

Thursday, March 11th, 2010

fema-flood-insurance-photo-low-resFlood waters are rising and water damage is eminent as you read this on March 11, 2010. The Mississippi is flooding a wide flood plain along most of the length but concentrated from Cedar Rapids to St. Louis according to the U.S. Department of the Interior/ U.S. Geological Survey http://la.water.usgs.gov/default.html

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Water damage – mold – historic preservation – murals – artwork

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

I was asked to consult on a renovation project of a historical building. The reason I was brought in was because there were difficult problems with murals. While this may seem not so relative to your situation… read on.

First of all, here’s what happened (that could happen to your home or office): The roof leaked and water infiltrated into the structure, into the walls. The roof leak wasn’t dealt with quick enough or completely enough cause someone was trying to save money and not be inconvenienced.

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When you store or ship a painting, should you roll it up? 3 reasons to…

Monday, February 1st, 2010

Well, I guess the beginning photo tells you why its not good to roll up paintings, new or old! It puts stress on the paint layers and they don’t like it.

A Russian Portrait from about 1900.

A Russian Portrait from about 1900.

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What Dirty Stuff Is On My Artwork?! – 3 Tips of what NOT to do!

Saturday, January 30th, 2010
During Cleaning/Removal of Grime and Yellowed Varnish.

During Cleaning/Removal of Grime and Yellowed Varnish.

A question I often get asked, “How do I clean my___________? My answer is a LONG list of sad stories of cleaning lady’s “gentile” or “light” cleaning techniques and dealers trying to save a buck. And yesterday, I got another such story to tell you:

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What Is The Best Temperature For Artwork? – 3 Tips To Protect

Friday, January 29th, 2010

I’m asked all the time something along the lines of  “What is the best temperature for my artwork?” or “What temperature should my house be?” or “What environment is best for my collection?”  Well, its not a one word answer. The answer is kind of long, actually, but I think you’ll find the answer and the photos  interesting.

What materials are you worried about protecting? A wood sculpture, an oil painting, a watercolor, glassware, a plastic toy collection, photographs, leather book bindings? Each material reacts to it environment a little different but by and large the answer to this question is, thankfully, not a single number temperature (that would be hard… and expensive… to try and maintain!). Its a range. My detailed answer to this question would be different for someone in Florida than Wyoming, or for someone living in Puerto Rico or Utah. But in general, what your items need, much like all of us, is stability.

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Removing SMOKE deposits and smell from an ornate frame.

Wednesday, January 27th, 2010

A gold leaf ornate frame came in from a home fire having a surface film of smoke residue. Using a Q-tip with simple “saliva” will nicely remove the residue.

There are two types of gold; one has an even color and is often brassy looking (will not dissolve with water) and two, is a gold finish that is very polished with over-lap lines and often shows red or brown colors through it. (will dissolve with water….and even saliva!).

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Mold damage and storage of family history.

Wednesday, January 27th, 2010


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