Our Furniture Department is thrilled to be starting a complex, multi-step treatment of a Chinese masterpiece. The piece is the Imperial Screen of Emperor Qianlong, the fourth emperor of the Qing dynasty who had one of the longest reigns (just over 60 years!) in Chinese history. It is now a prized part of the Lizzadro Muesum of Lapidary Art in Elmhurst, Illinois.
Though the treatment of this fascinating piece has just begun, it is already incredibly exciting due to the many different textures and materials used in the screen. As you will see in the video below, our Furniture Conservators have begun stabilizing and cleaning the piece. Furniture Department head, Steve Ryan, says that he is very pleased with how vibrant the colors of the piece are after the cleaning.
“We are constantly impressed with the level of craftsmanship in every element of the screen,” Steve shared. He is especially amazed by the fact that the wooden elements are jointed and fitted so perfectly that there is no glue holding the wood together- even after hundreds of years.