Conservation of a Cypriot krater

Object nameCypriot krater

Dimensions: 237 mm x 270mm

Age: Iron Age

Description: Beige coloured krater with dark brown, geometrical slip decoration.

Cypriot krater before conservation treatment

Cypriot krater before conservation treatment

The ceramic was extremely fragile. Due to salt contamination the surface of around 65% of the rim and shoulder was lost or flaking off. The remaining 35% of the rim were broken into eight pieces. The foot of the ceramic appeared stable, but had a small chip.

There were surface deposits of sinter and possibly salts, as well as a white bloom on the foot of the ceramic.

Conservation record card for the Cypriot krater

Conservation record card for the Cypriot krater

Treatment:

The ceramic was consolidated with a 5% solution of Paraloid B72 (acrylic resin) in acetone and flakes lifting off the surface were stabilised with Paraloid B72 drops along the edges. Particularly fragile areas were protected by a facing of spider tissue (type of Japanese tissue paper) applied with a 5% solution of Paraloid B72 in acetone.

After stabilising the ceramic was desalinated in de-ionised water baths over the period of one week (you can read about this stage of the treatment here). After completion of the desalination process the ceramic was dried in a controlled way underneath a Polythene sheet.

The broken off pieces were re-adhered with HMG B72, a readily available acrylic resin adhesive.

The ceramic was consolidated a second time with Paraloid B72 in acetone (2.5%). To protect big flakes from lifting off the surface they were back filled and the edges sealed with a mixture of microballoons and Paraloid B72 in acetone (40%). The gap-fills were retouched using acrylic paint.

Cypriot krater after conservation treatment

Cypriot krater after conservation treatment

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