Our cities and towns are filled with beautiful statues, modern large sculptures, and amazing monuments that have stood the test of time. Some of them are really picture-worthy and extraordinary; others are not so. However, each outdoor sculpture requires an incredible amount of work to be done to stay preserved for a long time. Moreover, this applies not only to large sculptures that can be found in parks, squares, or other public spaces, but also to those that belong to private art collections. Thus, whether it comes to your favorite outdoor sculpture installed in the back garden of your home or a valuable statue displayed in your living room, proper art storage conditions and professional conservation services are the most important things to think about. After all, any artwork is created from materials that are subject to environmental and mechanical degradation.
Glass & ceramic sculptures
Even though glass and ceramic sculptures are quite stable (if compared to paintings and other pieces of canvas art), they may still react to different environmental fluctuations. This is especially true for decorated, enameled, gilded, and colored works created with the use of metallic oxides, which may develop a fine network of cracks in the surface. Besides, large sculptures made from these materials can be easily broken even by the wind, not to mention possible damage caused by inadequate packing, transportation, or cleaning. This is where you may need professional art handling, conservation, and installation services offered by companies specializing in fine art.
Modern stone sculptures are usually cut from sandstone, limestone, granite, or marble. Each of them is considered a durable material; however, it does not mean that such sculptures cannot be damaged. First of all, they are affected by the crystallization of salts on the surface, pollutants, erosion, and inclement weather, which means that each outdoor sculpture should be carefully checked every 9-12 months depending on the environmental conditions. Moreover, many large sculptures are cut from poor-grade stone and, as a result, can be much more fragile than you think.
Since metals are very reactive to the environment, all forms of metal artwork should be protected from moisture and other environmental agents that may cause undesirable degradation or corrosion. For example, an outdoor sculpture made from bronze can be protected from harsh weather by using a suitable surface coating. Furthermore, a whole range of professional conservation services is intended to protect metal objects from possible mechanical damage, including breaks, dents, and cracks.
In this way, if you want to preserve your sculptures in good condition, you need to understand their properties and how they react with the environment. Try to maintain safe and controlled exhibition and storage conditions even for the outdoor sculpture. If it is impossible, do not hesitate to ask professional conservators and fine art handlers for qualified help.