The alter pieces arrived in the Hall Conservation studio in a poor condition. The shellac lacquer on the brass elements had broken down in numerous locations causing tarnishing. The exposed areas were quite deeply etched and were corroding preferentially to the lacquered areas.
The wooden shafts on the candlesticks were found to be oil painted and gilded with a wax coating over the surface. It was unclear if this wax coating was original. However, it was holding dirt and moisture onto the surface of the paint and gilding causing damage. The decision was made to remove the wax coating. The painted surface was very fragile and required consolidating during the cleaning process.
The shield sconces had been bent, presumably due to an impact. These were reshaped, largely by hand. Due to the fragility of the paint it was necessary to undertake this process slowly and consolidate at every stage of the reshaping to keep paint loss to a minimum.