Illinois State Capitol - Rotunda & Alcoves
Our multifaceted project at the Illinois State Capitol encompassed conservation treatments and decorative painting in the rotunda and alcoves. First, EverGreene executed a historic paint study and plaster conservation study, which we presented in a report. EverGreene then created maquettes and color samples of a proposed decorative scheme. We reinstated historic decorative scheme in the third-floor rotunda area and fourth-floor corridors. The decorative painting included hand painted work, painted faux marble, stenciling, lining, glazing, and gilding.
EverGreene also conserved the mural – Treaty With The Indians by Gustav Fuchs – in the rotunda staircase. Our conservators performed written and photographic documentation and executed multiple treatments, including emergency stabilization of flaking paint, consolidation of the mural’s plaster substrate, surface cleaning, and minimal infill in areas of loss with reversible restoration paints. The mural’s 42-foot-high frame was re-gilt with composition leaf.
In addition to Treaty With The Indians, we conserved three murals – Agriculture, Industry, and Commerce by Robert Grafton – in the fourth-floor corridors. We performed similar conservation treatments as Treaty With The Indians, supplementing with consolidation of delaminated canvas.
Four upper alcove murals depicting an eagle and flag also received treatment. After written and photographic documentation, we performed stabilization of the flaking paint and plaster substrate, surface cleaning, removal of non-original synthetic surface coating, and infilling of plaster voids due to “coal popping.” Finally, we applied an isolating layer of reversible surface coating and inpainted areas of loss.