The conservation of two Baccarat crystal torcheres at the Shangri La Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA

User menu

Publication Type:

Journal Article

Authors:

Koob, Stephen P.; Gue, Linda;

Source:

Studies in Conservation, Volume 57, Number S1, p.173-180 (2012)

Abstract:

Two large, 2 m tall, cut and mold-cast crystal glass torchères or candelabra at Shangri La, Honolulu, Hawaii, were completely dismantled for conservation in 2010. The torchères were made by Baccarat and date to around 1907. They have been on display since acquisition in 1966, with only minimal surface cleaning, and in 2010 required piece-by-piece disassembly for cleaning and stabilization. The prolonged exposure of the torchères to coastal salt air created a dichotomy of preservation issues, in that the glass was well protected and preserved, while the metalwork was aggressively corroded. After disassembly, all the glass pieces of the torchères were individually cleaned, and all the metal fittings were cleaned, stabilized, and coated to protect them from the aggressive environment. As many of the metal fittings as possible were removed from the glass, so that the glass and metal could be treated separately, especially since the metal required chemical cleaning and stabilization. A regular maintenance program of dusting and annual cleaning is recommended to minimize any heavy accumulation or dust, dirt, debris and salt. Forty-five years may be a good estimate of the treatment cycle required for that location.