Preservation Pointers #9: Cosmos Club

Sunday, August 26, 2018 12:09 AM | Ellen O'Brien (Administrator)

On March 19th, the Cosmos Club hosted APTDC and presentations on the preservation of the club were given by David Riccio of John Canning Preservation and Arthur Page of Page Conservation.  For those who missed the presentations below are some notes from the evening!

John Canning:

-Cheap repairs in the mid-centurn allowed the existing plaster to deteriorate along the exterior wall

-Molds taken from other areas of the room were used to replace the damaged areas

-Where furring strips worked loose of the joists, blocking pieces were used to fill the space between the joists and furring strips with the plaster then reinstalled over the assemblage

-The original gilding was actually three different techniques including water gilding and roman gilding

-Paint analysis determined the original color of the room was a warm grey.  Canning used two separate shades of gray to subtly enhance the ornamental plasterwork.

-To remove and restore the lunette panels above the doors, the door headers were carefully removed.  When replaced, the screws (which were covered after re-installation) were carefully mapped to aid future repair work.

Arthur Page:

-The lunettes over the doors were overpainted by a decorator in the early 20th century

-To determine how much overpainting was performed the paintings are viewed under a specific lightsource where the overpainting comes off as dull and dark.

-When the lunette canvases were remounted a larger sheet of muslin was attached to the canvas with modified wax to make future removal from the stretcher easier

-Additionally a new stretcher system was used which will expand and contract less than the original wood stretcher

Thanks to the Cosmos Club, John Canning, and Arthur Page for a great event!

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