Da Maiano Roundels, Hampton Court Palace
Conservation of Renaissance terracotta sculptures commissioned by Cardinal Wolsey from the Florentine Sculptor Giovanni Da Maiano
Catherine Woolfitt acted as heritage advisor to Historic Royal Palaces (CCC - Conservation Collections Care) in the conservation of the Da Maiano roundels from the project inception in 2005 to completion at the end of 2013. Initial input into the conservation of these exceptional terracotta sculptures crafted in the 1520s included: condition survey and assessment; photographic recording from cherry pickers; outline recommendations for remedial work (repair and cleaning options); and recommendations for further investigation and research.
Subsequently technical advice was provided throughout the process of investigating treatment options and developing suitable repair methods and materials. This included the production of mortar samples for assessment by various analytical methods and by external exposure and the execution of remedial work trials in 2010. Tender documentation (technical specification and schedule of work) was developed with the CCC team and input provided during the procurement phase, in tender evaluation and interviews. Catherine Woolfitt provided assistance throughout the Contract phase, working with the Client and the Contractor (Graciela Ainsworth Sculpture Conservation) to address the various technical challenges presented by the conservation of these important and very finely detailed sculptures in an external environment.