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This week in objects conservation: This ceramic lion has been in the lab getting ready for an upcoming gallery rotation, meaning when a group of works from our permanent collection are ‘rotated’ onto view in a gallery. One of the corners of the base had been damaged in the past, and a bulky old repair had discolored and become loose. Unfortunately, the old repair didn’t match the surface of the ceramic in size or color, causing it to stand out and distract from the main lion figure. Our conservator removed the old repair and created a new piece that is level with the surrounding surfaces.
This new fill was then inpainted and polished to a high gloss to match the surrounding glaze. With the corner now stabilized and blended to match the glaze surface, the lion can sit safely in its new display and viewers won’t be distracted by the missing corner.