GBI recently brought on textile conservation specialist Heather Hodges to conduct some rather specialized work at Scotty’s Castle in Death Valley National Park: research, documentation, examination and treatment of two tapestries and one textile.
- A red velvet textile hanging with floral cross-stitch embroidered appliques overall, a silk and metallic trim around all edges, and metallic fringe along the bottom edge. This hangs in the Great Hall on a balcony railing above the fountain. Assessed as being in fair to poor condition.
- A tapestry depicting a scene from “Don Quixote”: Don Quixote falling off his horse, a turbaned man at left ready to catch him, and a man mounted on a horse at right. Usually hung on west wall of the second floor gallery, but has in the past been on display on the north wall of the lower music room. Assessed as being in good condition.
- A tapestry depicting a scene from “Don Quixote”: Don Quixote and Sancho Panza meeting Dulcinea. Usually hung on the north wall of the lower music room. Likely dating back to the 17th Assessed as being in good condition.
Hodges conducted extensive research on Scotty’s Castle furnishings and consulted with the personnel of several textile conservation labs. She then began the painstaking inspections of the artifacts, documenting weak or fragile areas, deterioration of materials, previous conservation efforts, and distinct markings. Additionally, fiber analysis was accomplished using optical microscopy. Only then could the complex and time-consuming work of preservation begin.
Click HERE for more information on Scotty’s Castle, which is currently closed for flood repair.