Few decorative crafts can claim to be more ancient than stone carving, with the earliest carved objects being dated well into prehistory. The greatest monuments to human civilization, from the temples of ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt to the great cathedrals of Medieval Europe, are richly ornamented with decorative relief and sculpture carved in stone. Alan Micklethwaite, a stone carver with many years' experience in the conservation of historic monuments and sculpture, introduces the reader to the techniques and methodology of restoration stone carving, from simple relief to complex sculpture in the round, set against a sound conservation philosophy. The book provides a thorough understanding of stone as a material and describes its use in sculpture and the agents of its decay, as well as the method by which disfigured carvings can be forensically reconstructed, resulting in the re-emergence of beautifully carved historic architectural sculpture. The book is intended as a detailed introduction to restoration stone carving, and is aimed at those who are learning to carve stone or have an interest in pursuing a career in the conservation of stone sculpture and ancient monuments.
While having a depth of detail which will allow it to serve as a reference manual for the professional, it will also inspire the beginner and fuel the interest of those who harbour a desire to pursue traditional crafts.
Alan Micklethwaite is a highly respected freelance sculptor and stone carver with over twenty years experience in the field, which includes a post as head stone carver at Lincoln Cathedral. he has since carried out many commissions for new sculpture and monuments as well as countless pieces on cathedrals, churches and historic buildings throughout England. He is a member of the prestigious Bloomsbury-based Art Workers' Guild.
Detailed step by step case studies of actual restoration carving projects Full and in-depth description of tools and the techniques of their use Fully illustrated with detailed sequence photographs of work in progress from start to finish Provides a thorough theoretical background for conservation philosophy, the material science of stone and its art historical use Written by a renowned stone carver with more than twenty years experience in the restoration and conservation of historic stone buildings