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Subject: African stool

African stool

From: William Low <wlow>
Date: Wednesday, July 11, 2001
We have a round seated and based stool with two human figures
supporting each side and a cat running through the middle. The stool
is African (specific origin unknown--possibly Cameroon), carved from
a single piece of wood and probably from 2nd half of 20th c. We
recently noticed white, powdery looking substance on the underside
of the stool and supporting figures. Older condition reports list
"white accretions" on parts of the piece. This object has not been
inspected regularly so we do not know if it is increasing. The
substance covers the underside pretty much uniformly. The material
is dry and easily brushed off. Closer inspection reveals that the
larger particles of the powdery "accretions" appear crystalline. I
am wondering if;

    a.  This is residue left from a fumigation process (where only
        the upper facing surfaces were given a cursory wipe), or

    b.  It is possible that there is some kind of leaching process
        occurring.

While this does not appear to be a bloom, I don't want to rule it
out.

William Low


                                  ***
                  Conservation DistList Instance 15:11
                  Distributed: Thursday, July 12, 2001
                       Message Id: cdl-15-11-016
                                  ***
Received on Wednesday, 11 July, 2001

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