Bronze Seminar Course

Lecture 4. Protection, reintegration and maintenance


Protection and reintegration are often accomplished simultaneously. This is especially true for minimal intervention methods using accessible technology.

The goal of reintegration is usually to reduce contrasts between dark and light, by unifying surface colors and imparting a smooth finish.

Coatings of lacquer or of wax can be effective both for protection against corrosion factors moisture and acidic deposition, and for reintegration by the coatings' visually saturating effects on color and texture.

A. Clarification and refinement of subtle and obvious features


1. Form, texture and reflection

2. Color and contrast


B. Coatings


1. When not to coat

2. Coating types and functions
  a. Lacquers
b. Wax

3. Passive or minimal conservation


a. Primacy of aesthetics and commemoration

b. Decisions depend on appearances and tastes

c. The treatment(s) cycle: the bad with the good




Adequate provision for maintenance preserves both sculpture and the resources expended in producing or restoring sculpture.

A. Periodic scheduled examination and upkeep

B. Cleaning and recoating for maintenance

C. Deteriorated coatings