Come visit us in Hamilton, Michigan. We’re a high quality restoration studio providing services for artwork, furniture, and other treasured objects. We also produce museum-quality custom frames. Please call us for an appointment.

Member American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works.

Special thanks to Kallie Walker Photography // kalliewalker.com

Hoerman The American Progress Narrative Mural

Wonderful mural by Carl Hoerman (1885 – 1955), currently at old Paw Paw High School really captures the grand sweep of the new era in midwest America. Showing signs of its age and environment, the work is troubled with heavy dirt contamination. The mural is roughly 33 feet wide, and is 4.5 feet tall on the ends, and about 3 feet tall in the middle. Seen in person, the scale of the work is very powerful and transformational, sending the viewer back to an older time in America and highlighting the need for progress while still maintaining preservation. This creates a unique double narrative between the work and its condition.

Olendorf Study of Harvard Building

Study of Harvard Greek revival building by Bill Olendorf (1924-1996) is a great example for how an artist conceives of an idea in one medium and then builds on it in another. Most noticeably, the shift in point of view increases the dynamic presence of the building, and the inclusion of people shows an artist with an expanding command of subject matter. The oil painting is dated 1946, which we believe to be the year Olendorf graduated from Harvard.

Olendorf Watercolor Harvard Building

Chemical bath for watercolor by Olendorf (1924 – 1996). The blue residue is actually from another watercolor which transferred during a flood. Problematic tape is along the left side which contains non-archival compounds that are problematic on their own, and worse when water spreads them. There is also green paint in a corner, which came from the front of the work.

Ver Sacrum

Selected pages from Ver Sacrum (‘Sacred Spring’ in Latin) will be treated for acid and mold complications. The book was published between 1898 and 1903. In the photographs, the mold damage is shown by the blotchy discolorations, while the acid damage is shown by discoloration plus the drying-out of the paper, which leaves it extremely brittle and very susceptible to tearing. Ver Sacrum contains over 300 pages with works by Gustav Klimt, Knut Hamsun, Hugo von Hofmannsthal, Ricarda Huch, Arno Holz, among others. This will be the first round of restoration, as the client has decided to restore the work in sections. Stay tuned for more . . .

 

Olendorf Vezelay Landscape

Landscape by Bill Olendorf (1924-1996) suffers from exposure to saltwater as well as warping. This is the first work in what will be a very large job, and we are very thankful for the opportunity to work intimately with an artist’s collection in order to secure its legacy, as well as showcase the variety in medium and subject matter that come to define an evolving artist. Stay tuned for more . . .

Born in Deerfield, Illinois, William Olendorf showed an inclination for painting in high school, a pursuit which he continued during his years at Harvard and Washington & Lee University. During the WWII era, Olendorf served in the U.S. Navy, and then joined the ad industry at Leo Burnett and Foote, Cone & Belding. At age 40 he left the ad industry to focus full time on painting, and utilized his commercial contacts, turning many into commissions, which allowed  him to do two things he loved: travel and paint. His subject matter focused mainly on company headquarters, skylines, and cityscapes all over the world.

Olendorf’s works can be found in many personal collections of notable people: former presidents Bush, Reagan, Nixon, Ford and Clinton, as well as Henry Kissinger, Anwar Sadat, Fidel Castro, Jack Lynch and president Mubarak of Egypt. As a neo-impressionist, Oledndorf is recognized for his colorful paintings as well as his distinctive black and white sketches done in a straightforward and identifiable style.

Glass Painting from 1866

Glass artwork from 1866 with enamel paint shows a classical Dutch representation of a flower bouquet, containing chrysanthemums, roses, and violets, stemming from a chalice. Two crested game birds sit atop the work and give balance to what is a potpourri of symbolic and sentimental objects meant to stimulate the remembrance of home. The story goes that this artwork was completed by a Dutch immigrant while he was on the boat to the US.

As it is an older work, it’s not surprising to see that it suffers from dirt contamination and areas of loss. Stay tuned for its restoration as well as its placement in a Victorian shadow box frame.

Polk Restoration Initial Steps

Preliminary treatment of craquelures in this work by Leon Polk Smith (1906 – 1996). We opted for a less invasive technique whereby most of the conservation is done on the reverse. Stay tuned for more . . .

Eugene Jardin Sculpture

This Eugene Jardin (1947-) statue, 64 inches tall, had an unfortunate mishap. After some intricate repositioning and a special restorer’s adhesive, the neck was joined back to the body, with clamps providing some support. In-filling was necessary to replace what had been damaged or lost. In-painting was then carried out to match the assortment of colors back to the original.

Jardin was born in Germany in 1947, and studied at the Michalis School of Art, University of Capetown, South Africa. Since his move to the United States in the early 1980’s he has been considered a southwestern artist. Besides establishing a strong position in California and New Mexico art markets, he has received critical acclaim for exhibitions at numerous major galleries throughout the world. His work has been purchased by several museums and major corporations worldwide, and is included in the private collections of Johnny Carson, Jodie Foster, Jane Seymour, David Hockney, Pia Zadora, Wolfgang Puck, and John Schlesinger.

Custom Frames for Client’s Artwork

Quarter-sawn white oak was used to produce Marin style frames for a New York artist. The artwork is a series of watercolors, which could be described as studies, and are simple and elegant works, which the frames were designed to compliment. The collection consists of ten watercolors. Half received a large frame size, with sand dollar mats; and the other half, in a smaller frame size, received a museum mount with fillets. All works were archivally fitted and given UV-protective glass. This is a great example where we worked in collaboration with our client, making frames to work within a narrow style constraint, while still adding some character.