Miller Fenwood is a leading West Michigan restoration studio, providing services for artwork, furniture, textiles, ceramics, and other treasured objects. We also produce museum-quality custom frames. Our studios are located in Holland and Hamilton, Michigan. Please use the “Contact” tab near the top of the page if you would like to make appointment.

Member American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works.

Member International Fine Art Appraisers.

Children in Stairwell by Unknown Artist

This painting suffered from areas of loss and dirt particulates across the surface that had the effect of dulling the colors. The painting was de-fit and carefully cleaned with the areas of loss receiving in-fill and then in-painting to conceal them. A short and simple restoration with no surprises. And what an endearing picture and so well behaved. Its size is on the smaller side, about 12″ x 9 3/4,” which seems to add to its charm.

There is a signature in the bottom-left corner but not even cleaning made it legible enough to identify.

Koepf Red Portrait in Custom Frame

This portrait by Werner Koepf (1909-1992) dubbed the “Red Portrait” suffered from a thin canvas with many areas of loss. Near the top-left corner it had been hit and dirt particulates were across the surface.

The painting was carefully de-fit and cleaned. Re-lining improved the foundational strength of the linen and consolidation with in-painting concealed these areas. The area that had been hit also received a similar treatment of consolidation followed by in-painting. Conservation varnish brought the restoration to an end.

A new custom hand-carved frame was prepared in the Italian Cassetta style with raised gesso and granito decorative corners.

Werner Koepf was born in Neckarsulum, Baden-Württemberg, Germany and emigrated with his parents and brother to the United States in 1929. During the Great Depression he worked as a house painter. In 1937 his work was prominently mentioned in the New York Times’ review of The Society of Independent Artists 19th Annual Exhibition. With his talent he gained many connections in the art world: Morris Kantor, a trustee of Contemporary Arts arranged three scholarships for Koepf at the Art Students League from 1937-1939, and Daniel Catton Rich, the Director of Fine Arts at the Art Institute of Chicago paved the way for his inclusion in the Institute’s 52nd Annual Exhibition of American Paintings and Sculpture in 1941.

Koepf served in the US Army during World War II. Starting as a translator, between 1942-1945, he was then transferred to the European Theater where he served with the 496th Heavy Automotive Ordnance Company. In November 1945, he returned to the United States and settled in Derby, Connecticut.

In 1952 he was accepted into Yale University where he was awarded the prize for outstanding achievement in the School of Fine Arts for 1952-1953 by Josef Albers. Maintaining his European contacts, Koepf showed numerous paintings, including one man shows in Paris, Stockholm, and Bremen.

Werner Koepf died at his home in March of 1992.

Werner Koepf Collection

A couple years in the making, the Werner Koepf collection is now available at Armstrong De Graaf International Fine Art located in Saugatuck, Michigan, as well as our Holland studio. More information at www.adgifa.com.

Werner Koepf was born in Neckarsulum, Baden-Württemberg, Germany and emigrated with his parents and brother to the United States in 1929. During the Great Depression he worked as a house painter. In 1937 his work was prominently mentioned in the New York Times’ review of The Society of Independent Artists 19th Annual Exhibition. With his talent he gained many connections in the art world: Morris Kantor, a trustee of Contemporary Arts arranged three scholarships for Koepf at the Art Students League from 1937-1939, and Daniel Catton Rich, the Director of Fine Arts at the Art Institute of Chicago paved the way for his inclusion in the Institute’s 52nd Annual Exhibition of American Paintings and Sculpture in 1941.

Koepf served in the US Army during World War II. Starting as a translator, between 1942-1945, he was then transferred to the European Theater where he served with the 496th Heavy Automotive Ordnance Company. In November 1945, he returned to the United States and settled in Derby, Connecticut.

In 1952 he was accepted into Yale University where he was awarded the prize for outstanding achievement in the School of Fine Arts for 1952-1953 by Josef Albers. Maintaining his European contacts, Koepf showed numerous paintings, including one man shows in Paris, Stockholm, and Bremen.

Werner Koepf died at his home in March of 1992.

Walter Castle Keith Winter Landscape

This painting suffers from heavy dirt particulates over the surface, areas of damage and loss in the linen, and a dried out linen that has caused it to lose its structural integrity. Careful cleaning removed the surface particulates with quite the effect, as can be the case with winter scenes. Prior to this, the lady in the center of the composition was easy to overlook; her color and the color of the trees kind of blended together. Now she stands out and with a figure in the painting the tone is more mysterious and engaging. Next the painting will be re-lined and the holes in the canvas addressed and then final touches to the surface. This extra time with the piece will give us a chance to ask the lady, “Where are you going?” But will she answer us? Stay tuned for more…

Walter Castle Keith (1863-1927) was born in Penfield near Rochester N.Y. on February 18, 1863.  His father was a railroad engineer, and as a young man Keith worked as a fireman for his father on Engine # 573 between Syracuse N. Y and Niagara Falls.  In 1889 Keith began his art career by studying drawing at the Paul Nauen School in Munich, which was then regarded to be one of the most prominent schools for art in that famous old city.  In addition, he studied in London, Paris and sketched for a summer in Italy. These European experiences were fruitful as one of  his paintings won a gold medal at the Paris Exhibition in 1895.

In 1896 Keith returned to America establishing a studio in Syracuse N.Y. , becoming president of the Syracuse Art Club and starting the Syracuse Sketch Art Club.  Two of his paintings are currently found in the Onondaga Historical Association of that city.  After multiple trips to Europe, Keith in 1901 decided to reside in the Netherlands.  He spent some years in Amsterdam, where two of his paintings were acquired by the Stedelijk Museum.  He also painted in The Hague at Laren an North Brabant.  He always had a special affinity for Brabant where he lived and painted in a small peasant village of Heeze until 1921.  After that time, he returned to America living in Toledo, Ohio which was one of his favorite towns, and his work was greatly appreciated there.