Pioneers by Minerva Teichert Just Restored – Delivery next week


Whew! We are doing a lot of very cool projects for the LDS CHurch History Dept and the Museum right now. I could blog daily! Sorry I don’t have the time to share everything I’d like to about these really great projects, artists and stories. But here’s a quick update on the conservation work I’ve reported on in the past:

This painting of Pioneers is one of two murals on this subject my Minerva Teichert. They hang in the Museum of Church History and Art at the entrance to the main gallery.

One of two murals of pioneers by Minerva Teichert

Minerva Teichert's murals of pioneers

I call them murals because they were designed to be murals, I think. But, you know the definition of a mural, don’t you? “A painting on a wall.” Well, technically, these aren’t murals anymore since they are not on a wall but are framed moveable paintings now.

Anyway, this painting was glued down to a really poorly constructed backing of plywood and there were bubbles and distortions starting to show. So, the Museum sent it to us to remove it from the plywood, readhere it onto a quality honeycomb panel, clean (can you see the cleaning test along the top border, right side?) and revarnish it.

Minerva Teichert- Preparing new honeycomb panel

Preparing new honeycomb panel for mounting the painting of pioneers by Minerva Teichert.

In the above photo the adhesive is being laid on the white interleaf which is already adhered to the panel. You can see the painting wrapped around the large tube in the background.

The cleaning made a nice difference in color from a smoggy day to a nice baby blue sky. Here’s a photo of cleaning:

Cleaning a Minerva Teichert

Minerva Teichert Cleaning

You will notice the shiny left 1/3 side with the varnish still on it. The middle 1/3 has undergone a 1st cleaning but you can see in the sky that there is still a grimy look to it. The right 1/3 looks the cleanest. This process of going through a double cleaning was required to safely clean the painting. The first layer came off with one solvent and the second layer came off with another solvent. If we had tried to clean everything off in one effort, we would have removed original paint and damaged the artwork (which we NEVER do!).

I tried to post a quick video clip of the cleaning technique but I can’t get it to play so, sorry about that…

The painting is now mounted onto its new honeycomb panel, cleaned and newly varnished. Next Monday it will be packed up and next Wednesday, Oct. 26 it will be delivered to the Church’s Museum along with the conserved Odgen Temple mural (still as yet to be remounted into the new temple, obviously) and a newly acquired, newly discovered painting by the Church that I’ll blog about too. Also being delivered is a very nice old sacrament table (c. 1900) that was donated by someone in LA. We fumigated it and will be sending it up to SLC also.

Minerva Teichert's pioneers

Minerva Teichert's pioneers

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All my best


About Scott Haskins

Scott M. Haskins has been in the field of professional art conservation since 1975. He studied and worked doing mural and painting conservation in Italy until 1979. He headed up the painting conservation laboratory at Brigham Young University for the BYU Permanent Art Collection and the LDS HIstorical Department until 1984. He works from Santa Barbara, CA providing art conservation services nationwide. He is also the author of "How To Save Your Stuff From A Disaster."
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2 Responses to Pioneers by Minerva Teichert Just Restored – Delivery next week

  1. Kelly Daniels says:

    These look great! I never realized you had worked at BYU. Is that Virginia? Can’t believe I used to babysit.

    • Scott Haskins says:

      She’s 34 years old! How does that make you feel! Yes, I worked at BYU from 79-84 and was in charge of setting up the conservation lab for the University and for the Historical Dept of the Church.

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