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Mural Conservation of The Contribution of Negro Women in American Life and Education – A National Treasure in Houston, TX

Before Conservation, The Contribution of Negro Women in American Life and Education

This amazing public art, painted in the South in 1953, addresses the several, then, unpopular themes of women’s rights, equality of rights for all races including access to public education, freedom of speech, land ownership. “The Contribution of Negro Women in American Life and Education” was, of course, honoring and remembering the sacrifices of those known African American women in this struggle on behalf of their communities and families. This heartfelt recognition and plea sends a message about human rights equally applicable for all women of all races in all countries.

Our set up for the mural preservation and restoration work

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Historic Murals With American (Human) Values… Restoring art with a social conscience.

I’ve been doing mural conservation since 1975 and got my start in Italy. Since then, I have enjoyed working on wonderful historic and artistic murals in historic buildings and public places all over the United States and internationally. I love a good road trip and legislation about the transportation of toxic materials over the years has turned many of my travels into road trips in my car in order to transport all the supplies for these public art restoration projects.

My current road trip across the southern part of the western United States from the Pacific coast to Houston have brought to mind a couple of historic murals that I know intimately with wonderful, patriotic and humanistic themes:

Last night I stayed in El Paso, Texas where you can see Juarez, Mexico on the other side of the freeway. We recently worked on a mural painted by an Austrian prisoner of war (held on the military base) who loved the United States and painted at Ft. Bliss a mural of “One Nation Indivisible With Liberty and Justice For All.”An ideal to be held in the heart of every generation. He obviously had compelling examples as a past conscript in the Nazi military and obviously did not take for granted personal freedom. Continue reading

Posted in Murals, Travel | Tagged | 15 Comments

Woolsey Fire in Malibu – Smoke Damaged Art and Collectible Salvage, Rescue, Restoration

Even though this house didn’t make it, other houses in the area “only” got smoked badly and the meaningful contents of family history, collectibles and memories can be salvaged, saved, restored and preserved.

As with any natural disaster, while there are homes etc that are at ground zero and get obliterated from which you cannot salvage anything except melted metals, there are 1000’s of homes in the surrounding area that got hit marginally and have the chance to save and protect the items they deem important, or treasure or are of some value.

Such is the case, as you can see, that as we made our first salvage efforts and pick ups in Malibu yesterday after the fire a few days ago, the scene is apocalyptic… but there is much to save, protect and restore. Not all is lost.

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Posted in Disaster/Emergency Response | Tagged | 20 Comments

Smoke and Mold Odor Removal from Smoke Damaged Art, Antiques And Collectibles in the Malibu and Thousand Oaks Woolsey Fire

Short Video of Anoxia Tent Treatments – Oxygen Deprivation for

Smoke Damaged Art, Antiques And Collectibles 

Malibu and Thousand Oaks Woolsey Fire

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Professional Smoke Damage Restoration Services for Artwork, Antiques and Collectibles in Woolsey Fire, Malibu, Los Angeles

In the aftermath of fire in residential areas, once everyone and their pets have been accounted for and taken care of, the next human concern turns to finding and caring for items that represent the history of the person and/or family, their history and legacy. Items of value follow close behind in importance. How do you take care of your “stuff.” With 100,000’s of people evacuated, you can imagine the heightened concern for the safety of these types of close to the heart items. Once again, I don’t want to minimize the greater importance of life but, our specialty, expertise and profession are specific to helping you save, protect and restore your cherished family history items, collectibles, and art objects of value.

After the Thomas fire, not even 12 months ago, and the following mudslides in Montecito, CA the disaster response division of Fine Art Conservation Laboratories wrote up 60 proposals for insurance companies to estimate and propose the clean up and restoration procedures of 7,000 – 8,000 art related items of value.

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Michael Jackson Collaborated With Artist Kent Twitchell To Have His Mural Painted!

Kent Twitchell Interviewed by Andrew St. Wilson and taped for documentary

While Alive, Michael Jackson Collaborated

With Artist Kent Twitchell

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Posted in Consultations, FACL in the media, Murals, Professional activities | 13 Comments

Long Beach Public Library WPA Mural Preservation and Restoration

The mural was painted in 1937 by Suzanne Miller under the auspices of the Work Project Administration Federal Art Project (Federal Art Project – FAP, Works Progress Administration -WPA).

Long Beach WPA Murals Before Conservation

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Oil and Acrylic Paintings on Canvas Bulls-eye Cracking Patterns – What they tell an Art Collector

What caused it?

How long does it take to show up after the artwork has been hit?

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PBS Program on Rare Historic Oil Paintings of Spanish Missions of CA that Survived Horrific Circumstances, Painting Restoration Riverside at Mission Inn

The PBS program “Uncovered in the Archives” Producer called me a month or so ago all excited about something he considered to be super-interesting and important to report on: he heard there was a collection of 19thcentury paintings of the 21 missions of California by the early California artist Henry Chapman Ford that had almost been destroyed several times and were of National Treasure type of importance. He asked me if I knew anything about them.

(The 27 minute TV program video is at the end of this article.)

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Posted in Consultations, FACL in the media, In Lab, Professional activities | Tagged | 14 Comments

Art Restoration Services, San Diego

This last week I was in San Diego, CA visiting clients and making new connections in the painting conservation profession and for the first time decided to stay at a downtown Marriott Hotel. Downtown is quite the urban cement jungle with lots of tall buildings and the noise of dealing with that jungle and airport in close proximity. I remember growing up in LA, we’d go to the SD area beaches often to surf and there were about 1/2 million people. Now there are over 1.5 million in the city and 3.5 million in SD County. That’s a lot of growth to deal with. I think all of SOCal has had that growth to deal with in the respective  infrastructures.

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Posted in Consultations, Professional activities, Travel | Tagged | 10 Comments

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