Study of Original Painting and Gilding Technology on a Nineteenth-Century Terracotta Sculpture


  • Agata Ogińska
  • Piotr Niemcewicz



terracotta, gilding, nineteenth century, polychrome, technology


Conservation research has a main role to play during the decision-making process of restoration – how an object should look, what should be removed, what should be clearly exposed, and how to connect history and conservation with the aesthetic effects expected by the owner. In many situations we do not have enough historic material to fully establish this. In this article we would like to describe the process and steps taken during microchemistry research to identify the original technology used in the painting and gilding layers of a terracotta sculpture, dated to the late nineteenth century.

Author Biographies

Agata Ogińska

is a researcher and teacher at Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń as well as an art conservator-restorer with a specialization in architecture and sculpture. She conducts classes in the methodology of conservation of metal monuments with emphasis on the recognition, characteristics, and reaction to the corrosive factors of metals and their alloys. She also runs a workshop for the conservation of metal monuments (including archaeological monuments and artistic craftsmanship). She focuses her scientific research on metallic decorative coatings on metal and stone, especially gilding, as well as methods of their conservation and restoration.

Piotr Niemcewicz

is a graduate of the Faculty of Fine Arts at the Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń as well as a researcher and conservator of works of art specializing in stone sculpture and architectural details. He is the head of the Department of Conservation and Restoration of Architectural Elements and Details, Faculty of Fine Arts, Nicolaus Copernicus University. He deals with technological and conservation issues of architectural monuments, architectural details, stone sculpture, tombstones, and artistic craftsmanship. The results of his research have been published in specialist magazines in Poland and abroad.

Wall painting in the church of Saint Leonard in Mala Ligonja (Slovenia), fragment. Photo by Eva Marija Fras, 2020




How to Cite

Ogińska, A., & Niemcewicz, P. (2023). Study of Original Painting and Gilding Technology on a Nineteenth-Century Terracotta Sculpture. Acta Academiae Artium Vilnensis, (108), 145–157.