Two gilders of the restoration workshop of the Château de Versailles wrote this technical book abundantly illustrated. That is to say, if they are able to transmit to the reader the processes of their craft by relying on a great number of exceptional objects, be they furniture and frames, but also woodwork, stucco and even The ornaments of the roofs. Thus, this is not only a book on gilding on wood, but a reference book on all techniques of gilding.
After some reflections on how to practice their profession within the framework of the Castle, the authors review the products
And tools used. To leave nothing in the shade, they do not hesitate to report on the last gold drummer of France (the house Dauvet, active since 1764) or a manufacturer of tools of gilders (irons to repair Of the house Da Silva).
The techniques of gilding are then described at length, and countless photographs show the gestures and processes used by the professionals. The gilding in distemper (also known as gilding with water or gilding on the plate), the most beautiful car capable of an incomparable brilliance, is detailed in its 18 stages. The gilding with mixing (or gilding with oil), which is at Versailles mainly used outdoors, is then explained. The plays and other gilding techniques (Greek, on paper, on plaster, on glass, with adherent sheets) are also on display.
About twenty masterpieces from the collections of the Chateau and restored by the gilding workshop are then examined and the interventions described with a rich illustration of details. Some rooms adorned with carved and gilded woodwork are pretext to magnificent photographs illustrating the work of gilders of yesterday and today. The last pages deal with decorative painting (faux marble and false wood) often associated with gilding. The book ends with a glossary, the biographical notes of the craftsmen cited, a list of websites, suppliers and specialized books.
I. THE WORKSHOP
The profession of restorer at the castle
The restoration workshop
The missions of the workshop
II. PRODUCTS & TOOLS
The threshing of gold nowadays
The manufacture of trim and mixing
Manufacture of irons to be repaired
III. GOLDEN TECHNIQUES
Gilding in distemper in restoration
Gilding with tempera on a new piece
The game of funds
Gilding at mixtion
Other gilding techniques
IV. DORURE at the CHÂTEAU
Restorations and achievements
Golden decorations in Versailles
V. DECORATIVE EFFECTS
Restoration of works of art and polychromy
Decorative painting associated with gilding
Ornamentation and friezes