The Lovely Preservation of a 17th Century Map

A huge wall map, about 1.5m x 2.15m (5’x7′) found stuffed into a chimney in Aberdeen, Scotland last spring, was handed over in a plastic bag to the National Library of Scotland.2345557ff4f74990a47f0ba9ab8f0bbb

Resembling a bundle of rags, the map was severely damaged after being attacked by vermin and insects, a far cry from it’s hey-day, where it would have been hung on a wall to be admired by visitors.

The map of the world, by the Dutch engraver Gerald Valck, similar to this one is one of only three known copies in existence, but it almost landed in a trash bin during renovation on the Aberdeen property where it was discovered.

Resembling a bundle of rags, the map was severely damaged after being attacked by vermin and insects, a far cry from it’s hey-day, where it would have been hung on a wall to be admired by visitors.nls2.gif

It was about to be trashed for good but, luckily, someone had second thoughts and it was gifted to the National Library of Scotland.

Watch the exquisite work as it is being done in this film by Trina McKendrick. It is quite lovely:

A similar map from the same period is shown in the famous painting by Vermeer called Painter in his Studio.afa6c22e7c814facb23a8304450f2d26.jpg

The complex renovation involved a number of key stages:

• opening and flattening the map;
• separating it into its original eight sections;
• removing the linen backing;
• dry cleaning and washing the paper;
• re-assembling the cleaned sections onto a new paper lining.

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This article in the National Library’s magazine explains the process in detail:

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Materials collected from the National Library of Scotland, filmmaker Trina McKendrick, and the Scottish Daily Record.

About Stan Flouride

THIS BLOG IS ALWAYS AD-FREE I make stuff and do things.
This entry was posted in Art, History, Science and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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