1929 Mural to Saved From Demolition in Building Remodel in Idaho


While I was planning the work for the art conservation treatments of the murals in the Idaho Falls Mormon temple, I was asked by the LDS History Dept. to get info on a mural in a removed hillside town outside of Preston, Idaho. So, while we were returning to Salt Lake City after we were done in IF, we “stopped by” this cute old out of the way chapel to see if a safe removal was possible. You’ve heard about the “wide open spaces”? Well, this countryside is “it.”

The town is called Mink Creek (pronounced Crik) and the plan is to enlarge the chapel to seat more members during the meetings. The wall to be knocked down is the one with the mural on it. BUT, the plan is to mount the removed mural to another wall in the building. Here’s what the chapel looks like from the pulpit:

1929 mural in chapel of Mink Creek, Idaho

Mink Creek - Preston, Idaho LDS Chapel, with mural painted by H. Helgeson in 1929

1929 Mural of Temple Square, Salt Lake City

1929 Mural of Temple Square

The story that was told me was that the artist, H. Helgeson, had emigrated from Norway 5 years earlier. He painted several murals and other pictures in the chapel. He also painted murals in other buildings in the area and was in Idaho Falls doing a mural where he was mistaken by a policeman for a person he was pursuing and shot the artist dead.

My evaluation is that the mural can be removed safely (with proper pre-caustions), cleaned and be reinstalled in the building with a good long term prognosis for longevity and good condition.

It was a beautiful trip but what else would you expect in June? Its in January when you have to deal with 6 feet of snow during a normal winter!

You would have never heard about or seen this nice mural in Mink Creek if you were not in touch with this blog. I am pleased to let you in on this inside information. Please pass this URL along to others and be sure to sign up for auto updates in the side bar.

To learn more about what you can do to take care, protect and save your collectibles, memorabilia, family history, artwork AND help raise money for the Daughters of Utah Pioneers, go to http://pioneerartrestoration.com/dup-special/

Art conservation questions? Call Scott Haskins 805 564 3438

Art appraisal questions? Call Richard Holgate at 805 895 5121

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Scott Haskins, art conservation, mural restoration, LDS vintage art, mural to be saved, saving historic art

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Art Restorer/Conservator, Scott M. Haskins, Featured in Life Section of Newspaper


Marilyn McMahan, staffwriter of the Life Section of the Santa Barbara News-Press published a feature article on me and our art conservation lab last week. I was appreciative for the major coverage, photos and placement they gave! Here is the article entitled, “Art Conservator Restores Paintings in Santa Barbara and Around the World” – Art Restorer/Conservator, Scott M. Haskins, Featured in Life Section of Newspaper CLICK HERE: http://www.fineartconservationlab.com/media-room/art-restorerconservator-scott-m-haskins-featured-in-life-section-of-newspaper/
Please click on the “LIKE” button and leave a comment.

Scott M. Haskins

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LDS Rome Temple Construction Update


Progress on construction of LDS temple in Rome as of May 2012

Progress on construction of LDS temple in Rome as of May 2012

This isn’t really about art conservation but it might be indirectly connected later on! On May 28th we were in Rome and on that Sunday evening we went to the site where the new LDS temple is being built. We climbed up on a wall for some photos but a security guard came up to us and said, My partner inside the fence wants you guys down off this wall! He’s crazy too, has a gun and will shoot you!” We started laughing so hard at this implausible scenario we about fell off the wall! Anyway, so we went across the street and found a perfectly legal access up to the roof of the giant shopping mall where we got a fantastic view of the entire construction site.

Here’s a short video bringing you up to date on the progress.

I’m trying to see if I can wiggle my way into the installation of the new murals into the temple, that will be painted in a couple of years. We’ll see.
Pass the video around?
Scott M. Haskins

p.s. If you’d like to see another interesting art conservation related activity we had (but not Mormon art related) while we were in Rome go see this video I made of the behind the scenes tour of the collection of Historical Royal Carriages of the Italian White House:

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“Purpose of Life” by Robert Oliver Skemp (Hyde Park Mural) Update


I was asked for a quick update on the progress of the mural by Robert Oliver Skemp we removed from the Hyde Park Chapel in London, England: We are cleaning the reverse side of the glue etc that stayed on the back of the canvas of the mural when we pulled it off the wall.

Removing glue from the mural

Removing vinyl paste adhesive from the back of mural.

Here it is laid out, face down, as we go through the difficult task of getting the adhesive off the back without damaging the mural. This is something that must always be done when removing a mural from a wall.

This Thursday, the admin from BYU Idaho will come to Fine Art Conservation Laboratories (FACL, Inc.) in Santa Barbara to see the mural for the first time (its been donated to BYUI) and to discuss the treatments and the options for mounting it on a wall at the university. Should be a nice viist. We are all looking forward to it.

Here’s the video about the removal process in London:

Here’s the initial announcement of going to England to remove the mural: http://www.fineartconservationlab.com/murals/mural-removal-hyde-park-mural-project-in-london-england/

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Art Conservation Work This Week – Intense!


Brigham Young in Nauvoo, IL

Brigham Young in Nauvoo, IL about 1843. From the collection of DUP

We have the engine at FACL running on all cylinders this week: Mural work at the Salt Lake temple for the LDS Church, large paintings to be cleaned on site at the Daughters of Utah Pioneers (DUP) Museum in SLC, a Post War Expressionist Abstract painting by Jay De Feo examination and reports at Utah State University for the Whitney Museum of American Art in NY, inspecting a “pile” of newly discovered historic paintings, meeting with private clients in SLC and Las Vegas PLUS picking up and delivering gorgeous paintings in Los Angeles (Beverly Hills) and Carmel… and all our other stops! Give us a call.

Whew! We love it!

Sign up for updates to this blog now! Its at the top of the side bar. There is a lot going on. I promise to keep it entertaining and interesting!

See Daughters of Utah Pioneer website: http://www.dupinternational.org/

More info on our work with clients in Utah: http://www.fineartconservationlab.com/salt-lake-city-painting-restoration-art-restoration-art-conservation-painting-conservation-repair-art-slc-utah/

More info on our work with clients in Las Vegas: http://www.fineartconservationlab.com/art-painting-conservationrestoration-las-vegas/

For the Whitney Museum of American Art: http://whitney.org/

Art restoration/conservation questions? Call Scott Haskins at 805 570 4140

Art appraisal questions? Call Richard Holgate at 805 895 5121

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LDS Museum of Church History and Art Gets Big Delivery Today – October 27th


I’m on my way to Utah today for a very interesting visit with clients in Las Vegas and Salt Lake City. Part of this trip is all about delivering some big paintings to the LDS Museum of Church History.

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Church History Museum’s New Teichert


Plates of Laban by Minerva Teichert- detail

A portion of the painting.

A new oil painting by Minerva Teichert has found its way into the collection of the Church History Museum. Above is a portion of the painting. To see Zoram and other details, you will need to wait till the Church History Museum releases its official image (use of this image is strictly prohibited).

I looked it over when it was yet to be acquired to help give a professional opinion as to the condition. It has been previously worked on by someone who knew just enough to be dangerous. Fortunately though, it had not been damaged in the process of the previous “restoration.”

We have enjoyed having this painting in our lab very much. It has reminded me of when I worked on the 40 or so preparatory drawings, colored with oil paint that Minerva did in preparing her Book of Mormon illustrations. I worked on these for the Teichert Family back in about 1982. They allowed me to obtain two of them. This is one that I own:

Ammon Defending The Flocks of King Lamoni by Minerva Teichert

The full sized paintings in oil on masonite are owned by BYU and we often on exhibit in the Harold B. Lee Library.

Back to the Law on the Plates of Brass that we just deilvered back to the Church History Museum: Minerva often painted a “tribal” or ethnic frame around the perimiter of her paintings and she did it opn this one too:

Plates of Brass border

The decorative border on the Plates of Brass

Our art conservation treatments included undoing everything that had previously been done, cleaning, lining, new stretcher bars, varnish. The colors popped and new details were even visible. It really was a wonderful transformation.

Art conservation questions? Call Scott M. Haskins 805 564 3438

Art appriasal questions? Call Richard Holgate at 805 895 5121

See the tour of our lab at www.fineartconservationlab.com

If you like the idea of preserving Mormon Art or your appreciate the work we do on Minerva’s paintings:

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Mural from 1964 World’s Fair of The Purpose of Life – Update


Here’s an update on what is happening with the mural that I went to London to save from demolition. Here’s what was written previously:

Part 1   http://mormonartconservation.org/murals/the-purpose-of-life-mural-from-the-1964-worlds-fair-saved-from-demolition/

Part 2  http://mormonartconservation.org/murals/mural-removal-hyde-park-chapel-london/

YouTube Video  of removal  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_MRCf7uKEE

Lo Scopo Della Vita

Famous mural from the 1964 World's Fair in NY

I just spoke with Jerry Griffin at BYU Idaho who is choreographing the arrangements among the university administration and the campus departments for the mural’s use and display. There will be a meeting next Monday where the proposal on how to proceed will be presented. I referred Jerry to my video on reattaching detached murals that I made for Texas State University on YouTube ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JofT2RqFi94) to help them see the options.

In a meeting with the Church History Department last week it was hoped that the mural wound be available in the future for displays in SLC by the Church. So, our art conservation treatments will be focused keeping the murals portable, somewhat.

I’m gratified that all with whom I’ve spoken realize the importance and benefits of the mural and want the art conservation work to be the highest quality possible. I’ll be reporting on progress and maybe we’ll make another quick video if there is something interesting to show you. So, sign in for updates in the upper right part of the side bar so that you’ll when I post on this blog. There’s a lot of interesting news coming!

Art conservation questions? Call Scott 805 564 3438

Art appraisal questions? Call Richard at 805 895 5121

What can you do at home to preserve your stuff? Go to http://www.saveyourstuffblog.com

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In Utah Delivering Completed Art Conservation Projects and Consulting


LDS Temple in Salt Lake City

I’m in Utah meeting with private collectors and The LDS Church History Department. We’ve delivered the Minerva Teichert that I posted about at http://www.fineartconservationlab.com/projects/in-lab/painting-by-minerva-teichert-glued-to-plywood-removed-why/ I’ll post about it in a couple of days.
Monday will be  full day! I’m meeting with engineers and architects who are evaluating the “systems” (air flow, plumbing and electrical) in the Mormon SLC Temple. Some future work this next year will impact the historic murals rooms and they are talking to me about what it will take to preserve and restore. I’m really glad they are thinking about this!

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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


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