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Subject: Bolus gilding and restoring icons

Bolus gilding and restoring icons

From: Alex Kinnet <alex.kinnet>
Date: Tuesday, July 18, 2006
The restoration of gilded background of icons is a delicate matter.
When realized with the bolus method (traditional method) the
restoration often results in the partial or even total removing of
the gilding. Of course this is the case with "restorators" who
either work on a commercial basis or amateurs.

Anyhow many icons do have a ruined gilding and particularly in
composed icons, that means with a large number of people or scenes
on it, the restoration of the gilding is a real problem. Using the
classical method, bolus, gilding, polishing with traditional
material result in covering up  unwanted parts of the icon.  On top
the outlook of the gilded parts are mostly strikingly different
despite the fact of using proper type of leaves and different
colours of bolus. Several new materials  have been tried out but
publications on the method and results do seem to be non existent.

Working for church organistions, as a volunteer now that I'm
retired, the extra problem is many times  the lack of funds to buy
proper material and or the non availability of them.  Most of the
icons or iconostaseparts also are of little historical and cultural
value and might do with lesser costlier methods to save the

Who can guide me in this matter.?

Alex Kinnet
Bruges Belgium

                  Conservation DistList Instance 20:4
                 Distributed: Wednesday, July 19, 2006
                        Message Id: cdl-20-4-015
Received on Tuesday, 18 July, 2006

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