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Gujarat, India Traded to Sumatra, Indonesia Ceremonial cloth and sacred heirloom [patola] 18th century - pre treatment

 

Gujarat, India Traded to Sumatra, Indonesia Ceremonial cloth and sacred heirloom [patola] 18th century - during treatment

 

Gujarat, India Traded to Sumatra, Indonesia Ceremonial cloth and sacred heirloom [patola] 18th century - treated

 

Gujarat, India Traded to Sumatra, Indonesia
Ceremonial cloth and sacred heirloom [patola] 18th century
silk, natural dyes; double ikat
86.0 x 260.0cm
Conserved with the assistance of Lyn Conybeare and Christopher Conybeare AO

This very large fine silk patola is a conservator’s nightmare. The textile is over 5 metres in length with extensive chemical damage to over 30% of the fabric. Applying small patches was not possible due to the extent of damage. A technique for relining paintings on a large vacuum hot table was adapted to apply fine silk gauze to the entire reverse face of the textile. Each loose thread had to be straightened before the gauze was attached (taking a team of four conservators over a week). Blocks of similarly dyed fabric were then placed behind the areas of loss. (Conserved by Bronwyn Cosgrove and Charis Tyrrell)