During a renovation project at the Unley Park Baptist Church in Adelaide, a WW1 Honour Board was discovered under the stage featuring portraits of soldiers from the church’s community who served in WW1.
The honour board, with an inscription ‘On the Empires Service’, consists of 33 silver gelatin photographs mounted in a wood veneer window mount, with a secondary window mount hand cut in the shape of Australia. The glass was missing from the frame.
The piece was in remarkable condition considering the lack of glazing for protection and there was a light dust film on the surface of the work. Some photographs showed ‘silver mirroring’, unexceptional in photographs of this age, as well as some surface loss due to insect damage.
The conservation treatment included reducing the visual impact of the mirroring and the portraits were
in-painted with distracting emulsion loss. The mounted photographs were reframed with UV barrier acrylic and sealed with a new backboard. The work was digitally scanned and printed to assist future research about the soldiers represented on the board.
The honour board is on display at Unley Park Baptist Church, Unley Park, South Australia.
WW1 Honour Board before conservation treatment.
Jodie Scott, Senior Paper Conservator in-painting silver gelatin portraits.
Unley Park Baptist Church WW1 Honour Board after conservation treatment was completed.