Conservation repairs on heritage buildings come with technical challenges, in part due to mistaken notions about process. Too many in the business are willing to cut corners or adhere to rigid procedure in order to streamline costs. The problem is, doing this often makes a project more expensive, and these extra costs are passed on to the client.
It is understandable, therefore, that public perception of preservation projects is that they are too costly to justify the work. This is compounded by the fact that heritage buildings are slowly disappearing, especially in the West, and that many do not understand the importance of conservation. Thus, clients need to be educated.
A design-driven process works beautifully with a new project but not in preservation, as a design-driven process requires imposing pre-conceived ideas on the job at hand. With conservation, that is the last thing you want. An open mind and adaptive process are crucial. Where the goal is to preserve, respect for the existing structure must be a starting point in investigating every aspect. Iconoplast painstakingly goes through every detail to understand what is there and how every element is related. A failure to do so can end up with considerable errors.
Structures and buildings that last bring beauty and history to our worlds and in some cases come with spiritual significance. In today’s rapidly-changing world, we cannot lose the value of legacy or honor for the past and for tradition.
To accomplish our means we use the methodology pioneered by Morgan Philips in the 1970s: the use of acrylics in plaster conservation to complete application, a standard for repair that still exists today. Our HPCS process is a sequence of steps that involve consolidation and reattachment procedures for delaminated and friable plaster on wood lath, including recreation of missing plaster keys, using acrylics. The steps we follow: