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What is Restoration?

Restoration is the act of returning a work of art to its original or former condition.

Restoration is distinct from conservation. Conservation is the act of maintaining the artwork in its current state by protecting it from damage.

Only the owner of the artwork can decide if it will be restored. If a work is damaged you should inform the owner of your observations and let them make an educated choice. If the artwork is not restored then you must still endeavour to conserve it.

The Medieval Period
The Framer's Responsibility

You are responsible for the protection and conservation of all artworks that you frame.

When a client gives you a piece of work to be framed they expect you to take the utmost care of that work, implied or not!

Everyone concerned with the framing of anything is responsible for the artwork and the quality of craftsmanship bestowed on the job.

The best thing that you can do when a client or your supervisor presents you with a job that you do not understand or cannot do is to tell them " I cannot do this ". You can always consult someone who is trained in the area that you are not.

Your greatest responsibility is to yourself; to know when to learn more about the job in hand before tackling it.

Restoration FAQ

What are the signs of damage exhibited by artworks exposed to acidity?
Artworks exposed to acidity can show any or all of the following; embrittlement dicolouration, corrosion of metals, staining and coloured spots on photographs.

What can happen to artwork subjected to high humidity?
Artwork subjected to high humidity can buckle due to expansion. It also has a high chance of promoting mould growth and it may also be stained through the migration of impurities.

How can I reduce physical damage to artworks?
You can reduce physical damage to artworks by adopting sound handling techniques and by educating yourself in picture framing.

How does pollution damage artworks?
Pollution damages artwork either by causing a direct chemical reaction with the artwork or by the pollutant combining with other chemicals present to form a damaging chemical.

What should I do if an artwork requires restoration?
If an artwork requires restoration you should consult a trained conservator. Usually your local art gallery or picture framer will be able to put you in touch with a qualified conservator.


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