The ravages of time can really do a number on art work. Over many years, fading, deterioration, wrinkling, crumbling, and other damage can occur, thereby decreasing face value and aesthetics. Art work can range from drawings and oil paintings to sketches and sculpture.
When damage occurs to a painting, etching, water color canvas, or printing paper, restoration and conservation efforts are needed to bring back its former allure. There are professionals trained specifically in fine art restoration and conservation, and they are often hired by museums, antique owners, and art enthusiasts. They bring their many years of experience to the job, performing repairs with painstaking detail. They may work on fine art of high historic value, or they may do it on the side as a culture hobby.
Many museum collections fall to disrepair over hundreds of years. As such, museums and gallery owners either contract out for restoration and conservation services, or they have such professionals on staff. Restoration and conservation can help restore and preserve art so that future generations can enjoy it. This involves helping prevent damage from humidity, light, and other human and environmental factors.
One only needs to look to famous works of art like Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa, which has been restored numerous times in its more than 500 year history. Restoration efforts have come a long way over the years, to include processes like digital varnish removal and foxing stain removal.
Art restoration and conservation dealers sell tools, brushes, and equipment necessary to properly restore and preserve a piece of art. These products can be found online or in large art shops. Cleaning a picture or image, or restoring an old book, can be tedious work, but professionals who have honed this craft over many years can deliver on the task.
Regardless of whether you are a small collector who has a few paintings, prints, etchings, and other fine art objects or if you are a serious gallery that has a large collection of drawings, watercolors, pottery, books, porcelain, and pictures by famous artists, you might find that sometimes you need art restoration and conservation services to keep your artifacts in top condition. In order to find the conservation and restoration company that is best for you, though, you will need to know what questions to ask them. It is important that the art restoration and conservation company you choose has a lot of experience so that they know how to use solvents, varnish, brushes, and cleaning materials safely so that they do not damage old oil paintings, watercolors, paper and canvas prints by popular painters, drawings, and other old, fine art objects in your gallery. Asking them how long they have been in business should give you a pretty good idea of how much experience the companies have conserving and restoring fine art. Ask the company if their technicians have received training at top institutes. You should also ask them if they have a list of references that you can check. This will give you a good idea of how satisfied other art owners and galleries have been with the services that they have received from the art restoration and conservation company. Cleaning pictures, paintings, pottery, porcelain, old artifacts, and other fine art objects can be difficult, so be sure that you choose a company that knows how to care for the works you own so that they do not decrease in value.