Sometimes, a bad restoration can be worse than no restoration at all. Such was the case with this 19th century Charles Jacque panel painting we restored for the Mulvane Art Museum in Topeka, Kansas. The center of the painting was lumpy, uneven, and poorly painted. We realized during our examination that someone had previously tried to repair the wood panel from woodworm damage, but the result was less than ideal.
We started by excavating the previous restoration work, taking the panel back to its original state. We then filled in the damage with archival conservation materials and leveled the surface. Our final step was in-painting the areas where the original painting had been lost, restoring the artist's vision.
We were thrilled to be able to recover this painting from a mediocre repair job - such a sweet painting deserves nothing less.