|THE WAY THEY WERE|
Another person may have left her on the shelf waiting. Someone else may have brought her home, washed off the dirt, and left the time-darkened glue as it was. There was something very touching about this Madonna and Holy Infant in that condition. I chose to attempt a renewal of the Madonna and Child.
Looking past the dust and grime, you can see that she was lovingly repaired by someone in the past. Enough time passed that the glue had badly darkened and discolored. How she had been broken, and who had taken the time and effort to repair her is now a mystery.
Starting with acetone nail polish remover on cotton balls, I rubbed at the glued places. It seemed to soften a little around the edges, but it took too much pressure to remove the old glue. I was worried I would break the Madonna's delicate fingers or hand. (Notice the details of the porcelain work on her hands and fingers. Her fingernails are finished with a glossier finish than the rest of the piece.)
I then took nail polish remover-soaked cotton balls and laid them on the glued places, then wrapped the soaked cotton balls with aluminum foil to make an airtight seal. Several hours later I checked the progress. The old, darkened glue started peeling away in layers. I repeated the process several times until all of the darkened glue was removed.
|THE ARM CAME OFF IN THE BATH WATER!|
Under the layers of glue there was a fairly large chip that had been filled with a wad of paper or paper mache. The figure went back to soak in another Dawn dish detergent bath in hopes of softening that paper wad. When I took the figure out of the water, the paper wad had given way, but so had the Holy Infant's arm. The little arm lay in the bottom of the bowl of detergent water.After a good rinse and another towel drying, I started to make my repairs. First the arm was glued back into place with Superglue. Luckily, I placed it correctly on the first try. Then it was left to dry overnight.
The next day, the process of building up layers of acrylic paint-tinted Paperclay to match the area that had been so badly chipped and broken was begun. Then the Infant's tiny fingers needed to be repaired.
|THE MISSING PIECE THAT NEEDED TO BE FILLED IN|
|CLOSEUP OF REPAIR. NOT PERFECT, BUT NOT NOTICEABLE FROM A SHORT DISTANCE|
SEE THE DETAIL OF MARY'S HAND AND FINGERNAILS!
|RENEWAL OF THE MADONNA|
And her story continues.