Hinchcliff Wool Store Sheep

PROJECT DATE : 2017-2020
project
Hinchcliff Wool Store Sheep
client
AMP Capital Investors
services
Objects Conservation, Outdoor Heritage

Overview

ICS was engaged by AMP Capital Investors to carry out a condition inspection and provide options for the conservation of the Hinchcliff Wool Store Sheep. This resulted in ICS managing the replication, gilding and installation of the sheep back in its original location on the roof of the Wool Store.
The heritage listed Hinchcliff Wool Store Building in Loftus Street, Sydney dates from the 1860s and the positioning of the golden ram on the roof reflected the economic importance of wool as Australia's chief export from the principal trading port of the colony of NSW.

Condition

The sheep was structurally unsound and had a very poor aesthetic which included:

  • Major losses in the armature
  • Structure supported by only three legs, with one leg completely detached from the sheep. The remaining three legs, although attached, had separated from the armature due to failed fixings.
  • Significant cracking and corrosion of armature.
  • An external metal wire wrapping had been added over the entire sculpture to hold broken fragments together.
  • Extensive corrosion of metal, with major pitting and delamination.
  • Cement and brickwork cracked, with fragments powdery and disintegrating.
  • Paint losses exposing thick layers of successive paint applications including a gilded layer.
  • Extensive biological growth on the sheep underside.

Due to the extensive damage, a decision was made to replicate the sheep. During cleaning of the sheep to allow for replication, evidence of the sheep originally being gilded was uncovered.

Treatment

  • Condition assessment.
  • Reconstruction of damaged sheep to allow for casting.
  • Fabrication of mould of the original sheep.
  • Replica of the original sheep cast in fibreglass.
  • The fibreglass replica was gilded with gold leaf.
  • Lifting of the sheep into position on the roof.
  • Installation and fixing of sheep onto the roof.

project
Hinchcliff Wool Store Sheep
client
AMP Capital Investors
services
Objects Conservation, Outdoor Heritage
Original Sheep
During Treatment, Recasting

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