Antwerp soldier

Fixing and cleaning the polychrome of an Antwerp soldier of the sixteenth century

Species: oak.
Height: 48 cm.
Width: 16 cm.
Thickness: 9 cm.
This sculpture is part of a set of 98 pieces belonging to an altarpiece made in Antwerp in the sixteenth century, which was once exposed to Liège and sold in England in 1940 to finish at the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia.

In 1982 he returned to his home country for a few months to be restored in the sculpture workshops of the Brussels Heritage Institute under the direction of Ms. Myriam Sark.
The purpose of our work is behind Christ in the stage of the ascent to Calvary. The statuette has some unfinished parts hidden from the viewer.
The damage without alarming, are quite significant. Oak support is slightly stung worms in the back. The colors are strewn overpaints, uprisings and gaps, all covered with a thick layer of grime in part due to the smoke of old candles. Many foreign body, probably former sprays applied during a previous restoration in the mid-nineteenth century, partially cover the statuette.

Antwerp Soldier early sixteenth century


Overpaints clearance with solvent

Clearance with scalpel under binocular of the helmet’s polychromy

Scraffito on the handle of the right hand

Madder lacquer on burnished gold

Antwerp Soldier early sixteenth century

Detail of the face after treatment

Antwerp Soldier early sixteenth century

Final state after treatment