Leonora Weaver is the only conservator that I would recommend to a client or to the trade. She is a third generation in her expertise; continues to learn new technique and skills and is constantly challenging her skills to give her clients the best value for money.

- Roger Krava. Dealer and collector.

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Art Restoration Case Studies

Here are a few examples of some of the many and varied items we have worked on.

Currier and Ives; Two Partridges, Circa 1850, 14" x 18"

Restoration of Currier and Ives; Two Partridges, Circa 1850

This print came into my Atlanta studio badly water stained and yellowed due to incorrect framing procedures. Over time the acids from the cardboard backing had migrated to the print and turned the paper deep brown. Shortly after being printed, watercolor had been added by hand colorists. This coloring dictated that my treatment include blotter washing, which does not disturb the media yet effectively removes the acidic discoloration from the paper. After several blotter washes and dryings the print's margin tears were repaired. The final result more closely resembles how the print looked at the time of its creation.

Learn more about our deacidification services

OIL OF LADY, circa 1890, 24" x 20" oil on canvas

OIL OF LADY, circa 1890, 24

This charming portrait of a Victorian lady shows just what a difference cleaning and restoration can do for a picture! A century of cigarette smoke as well as the typical yellowing of the varnish totally obscured the beauty of this lady. When she came into my Atlanta studio I removed the varnish, adhered any loose flakes of paint that were attempting to fall from the canvas and then cleaned the painting. Once it was cleaned I touched up the lost areas with new oil paint and once the paint was dried I applied a new coat of varnish. The clients were delighted at the transformation and have hung her, a distant relative, on their family wall.

Learn more about varnish removal services

PHOTO OF A LADY, MIXED MEDIA OF OILS AND PHOTOGRAPH. 30" X 24"

PHOTO OF A LADY,  MIXED MEDIA OF OILS AND PHOTOGRAPH.  30" X 24"

The before image shows the artwork partially cleaned so that the viewer can get the most dramatic effect. This was a photo portrait originally made in the photographer's studio, circa 1960's. While the image of the lady was left alone it was decided to oil paint the background. Mixing the medias like this was not uncommon and oil applied to a photograph was, and still is, a common occurrence. However, after several decades of atmospheric pollution the artwork was badly yellowed and stained. I managed to surface clean the photo part and then, using oil painting restoration techniques, cleaned the background. We did not varnish the image but advised the client to reframe the artwork under UV glass for the best future protection.

Learn more about fine art cleaning services

CHOCOLAT POSTER, 1902, 42" x 29"

CHOCOLAT POSTER, 1902,  42” x 29”

This amazing poster came from a framing gallery's client. This Edwardian German Chocolate poster had been varnished and pasted onto a metal sheet and used as an advertisement outside a shop. It was out in all weathers! It had rust issues, the varnish was yellowed and cracked from exposure and age. Mold had disfigured the image, blemishing the face and dress.

I had to remove the poster from the metal sheet, deal with the rust and remove the old varnish. Once the paper was cleaned I could make repairs were there tears in it and then relined it onto Japanese paper for stability. With a final touch of watercolour paint to fill in the missing areas the poster was finished and given back to the client for conservation framing. The client was delighted at the transformation and it sits in a prominent place in their office.

Learn more about varnish removal & cleaning services

PHOTO OF A SOLDIER MAN READY WITH HIS GUN, STEEL ENGRAVING, 1876, 20" x 16"

PHOTO OF A SOLDIER MAN READY WITH HIS GUN, STEEL ENGRAVING, 1876, 20" x 16"

This steel engraving was made to commemorate the one hundredth anniversary of the American Revolution. It shows one of the Minutemen in a battlefield. The damage on the image shows how bad framing techniques can affect a piece over time. The original wooden planking backing boards caused the brown, vertical streaks and where breaks in the board had occurred atmospheric pollution and acids from the wood was absorbed into the paper. Water damage and foxing also occur. With careful washing and cleaning of the paper we managed to get out all but the faintest of traces of the brown lines and repaired the minor tears along the edges.

Learn more about our deacidification services

OHPELIA, 30" X 40", PASTEL ON BOARD

OHPELIA, 30" X 40", PASTEL ON BOARD

This is one of a set of pastels owned by the Flagler College museum in St Augustine, FL.

The pastel, dating from 1880, had a bad attack of mold, leaving disfiguring brown spots all over the surface of the pastel. Handling pastels is very difficult since, with the slightest of touches, the pastel can be rubbed off, leaving gaps in the artwork. I had to gas the artwork with Thymol, killing all active spores and then gently go in and remove all the spots. With careful blending in of the old pastel all traces of the spots were removed leaving the artwork fresh and clean and able to be viewed with pleasure again.

Learn more about our mold and mildew restoration services

DEACON JONES ONE HOSS SHAY, NO 1, hand colored print circa 1870. 20" x 24"

DEACON JONES ONE HOSS SHAY, NO 1, hand colored print circa 1870. 20" x 24"

This print had everything wrong with it! It had been framed using wooden slates as backing so that the acids from the wood seeped into the print paper. The two vertical streaks that you see are typical of where breaks in the wood had occurred, allowing the acids to concentrate there and weaken the paper. The edges of the paper had broken away and water had seeped into the bottom, causing the watermark on the bottom of the print. The bright original coloring of watercolor was still on the print but, due to the yellowing of the paper, had become deeply obscured.

After testing the print I carefully "blotter washed" the paper. After numerous treatments the yellowing acids had seeped away and I had a clean and sturdy print. I then filled in the lost areas around the border with carefully trimmed old paper. Wherever possible the paper I use for infilling is antique paper, carefully matched for tone and thickness.

Learn more restoration services for poor framing

JOHN GUND BEER POSTER, CIRCA 1895, 65" X 28"

JOHN GUND BEER POSTER, CIRCA 1895, 65" X 28"

The before photo shows you the damage that a burst water pipe can do. The poster was hanging on the wall when a pipe broke in the room above and a torrent of water dipped down the wall. Absorbing the water, the backing and poster swelled and stuck to the glass of the frame where it was left to dry. The surface of the poster became gummed to the glass and when the framer attempted to remove it from the frame it tore off and stuck to the glass. I was called in and, taking the glass back with me, I carefully loosened the remains of the paper off. After cleaning and deacidification the poster I took the pieces and carefully pasted them to the poster using rice four paste, a typical conservators' paste used for centuries, I touched in lost areas of color by using watercolor toned to match the paper.

Learn more about our services for repairing rips and tears

CUPID REMOVES A BUTTERFLY FROM HIS ARM. CHARCOAL DRAWING, CIRCA 1920, 23" X 14"

CUPID REMOVES A BUTTERFLY FROM HIS ARM.   CHARCOAL DRAWING, CIRCA 1920, 23" X 14"

This drawing was made by my client's grandmother and had been stored in the attic for many years. When found, the drawing had suffered from a fall, and the glass had broken through the drawing, splintering it into many pieces!

I had to carefully clean the pieces, one by one, making sure that nothing splintered any further. After careful washing, cleaning and de-acidification, the pieces were carefully joined, one piece at time, to each other using Rice flour paste and Japanese tissue. When fully assembled, it lay flat and complete and ready for conservation framing.

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Hand Coloring

This print is a steel engraving, printed circa 1874 and shows the famous portrait of Washington at the Battle of Bunker Hill. I cleaned the print and then, after research to get the colours directly from the oil painting, I hand colour the print using only watercolours that were available to the painters at the time. I have to build up the layers of colour going from light to dark, following the pattern of inking given to me by the engraver. By the time I am done the image is transformed!

Learn more about hand coloring