Conservation and Restoration | Metal
The Metal Conservation Department is responsible for the ongoing supervision, conservation and restoration of works of art made of metal in the SPSG’s collections. These include outstanding art and cultural objects from the 16th to 20th centuries, with works of the applied arts representing an important focus. Objects of particular merit include the Prussian crown insignia and Frederick the Great’s opulent snuff boxes. The Metal Conservation Department also looks after a notable inventory of ornamental cast iron from Berlin and silver tableware once belonging to Prussian rulers, as well as a unique collection of Frederician chandeliers.
The Metal Conservation section also cares for numerous, mostly life-sized, metal sculptures in the palaces and parks that were produced in various techniques after models by renowned artists such as Schadow, Rauch or Kiss. Another of the metal conservators’ responsibilities includes the clocks, among them the Frederician timepieces, which are sometimes worked in the Boulle cabinetry technique and represent a particularly valuable part of the collection. The coaches, sleighs, and sedan chairs in the collection require a particularly high standard of care. As with the clocks, it is particular challenging to have to observe art historical and aesthetic considerations, while also keeping the functioning components working.
Preserving the extensive array of metal architectural sculpture and façade ornamentation is also a responsibility of this department.
The objects in the care of the three metal conservators are made of the most diverse materials and material combinations. These include gold, silver, copper, bronze, zinc, iron, non-ferrous metals, and their alloys, sometimes together with gems, marble, other stones, wood, leather, glass, textiles, porcelain or enamel. The department is very knowledgeable about a broad range of materials.