About the cultural significance in our society
Conservation of cultural heritage in museums
The Louvre in the heart of Paris is considered as one of the most famous museums worldwide. It was not until 2018 that a new record was set with over 10 million visitors. The figures show that more and more young people are finding their way to the Louvre. The cross-generational aspect of restoration is thus given a living meaning! The museum rooms contain valuable works of art, with Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa certainly attracting the most attention.
In Germany, the Museum Island in Berlin (UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1999) has developed into a magnet for the public, allowing more than 200 years of cultural history to be experienced in a small space. A master plan envisages the complete restoration of the Museum Island and thus making it attractive for visitors in the long term with a sustainable concept. In view of this, restoration can combine history, present and future.
Glass and stone restoration in churches
The Cathedral of Cologne can be considered as a worldwide known prime example in this area. The sandstone is constantly exposed to the weather, which can be clearly seen in the black discolorations on the facade. The sandstone itself has a light, yellowish hue. The restorers' work on this building knows no bounds, as it has basically been an impressive permanent construction site for years. Returning visitors will be able to recognise this by the scaffolding that is actually always there. Experts estimate that the daily costs for the maintenance of the Cathedral of Cologne are in the 5-digit EUR range. If nothing were invested in the continuous restoration, individual areas or possibly the entire cathedral would have to be closed to visitors within a few years. The work of experienced restorers explicitly aims to keep this important cultural asset open to visitors.
Restoration of paintings
The restoration of paintings plays a key role in the cultural identity of a country; after all, such works of art are literally visible - they make history seem alive or close enough to touch. In Germany, for example, the Alte Pinakothek in Munich has acquired a great reputation. Apart from conserving and exploring paintings (for example with regard to painting techniques), it is also important for restorers to restore damaged works to their original condition if necessary. Possible restorative measures include material-specific additions and so-called reversible retouching. Particularly with works of art on canvas, sensitive fibres have to be sewn and soldered with high precision.
Restoration of stucco and wall paintings in castles and palaces
Palaces and castles have always been a crowd-puller, because they take visitors back in time to authentic settings. In view of the very well preserved condition of many castles in Germany, it is clear what detailed work professional restorers do. Above all, elaborate stucco and wall paintings are a great challenge during restoration. It is not always possible to fall back on complete documentation in order to restore castles to their original condition in the course of restoration.
The magnificent Sanssouci Palace in Potsdam and the Wartburg Castle in Eisenach can be regarded as very successful examples of restoration in this area. At the same time, part of the entrance fee is invested in the necessary restoration and conservation, so that visitors can make an active contribution to the preservation of cultural assets.
Book & written material Conservation in libraries
Those who want to take a look back into history are dependent on eyewitness reports or so-called primary sources. In this sense, it is also part of the work of restorers to preserve old documents as important contemporary witnesses in archives or libraries. Paper or more primitive early forms are visibly affected by external influences in the course of time. In the case of professional conservation, the aim must be to ensure long-term legibility. After all, the contents should also be available for future generations, whereby digitalisation of course opens up new options. Challenges in this area are being met by restorers specializing in paper. In addition to the work on individual pages, the binding is also the focus of the restorer's or conservator's work.
The Anna Amalia Library in the cultural city of Weimar, Germany can be considered a renowned example.
Restoration of antiques and furniture
Antiques are coveted collector's items which, apart from their nostalgic appearance, can also have an immense material value. Wood furniture in particular is naturally susceptible to external influences. When the ravages of time have visibly gnawed at old furniture from past eras, it is time for professional furniture restoration with a passion for details. Depending on your wishes and the area of application, it is possible to restore the original condition true to detail through comprehensive restoration.