What We Do | planning and executing restoration projects for architectural monuments and museums, and archaeological restoration

What We Do

Competence based on practical experience

Some of the key objectives of Restaurierung am Oberbaum GmbH (RAO) are planning and executing restoration projects for architectural monuments and museums, and archaeological restoration.

The planning, coordination and monitoring of restoration projects are important facets of the services we offer.

We have successfully completed restoration projects for the preservation of historic buildings and the restoration of artefacts in museums all over the world, and our work is grounded in many years of practical experience.

Starting with the initial planning phase, we provide the following services for our clients

  • We determine the extent of the services required and coordinate the programme for the entire project up to agreement of the restoration goals.
  • We integrate the services of other specialist planners and produce drafts, sample work, and models.
  • We draw up timelines and organisational plans and estimate building costs using prior experience and industry knowledge.

Pooling diverse international specialists and having an interdisciplinary, team-orientated collaboration has become a core element of our company philosophy.

Our planning team is composed of conservators with postgraduate degrees, sculptors, architects, scientists, art historians, and archaeologists.

We do all the planning ourselves, beginning with a survey of the current condition of the object and research into its history.

Our services also include
  • Drawing up condition maps, inventories, and room equipment catalogues with detailed object descriptions
  • Determining object dimensions and deformation, providing photographic records and research from historical sources and archives, and establishing the history of individual objects
  • Evaluating historical photographs, visualising historical or planned conditions, and producing current and post-restoration condition maps.

With wide-ranging experience, our team guarantees reliable planning. Collaborating with long-term business partners in neighbouring disciplines, we undertake projects with intricate problems with the utmost care and commitment.

  • We carry out a systematic analysis and evaluation of an object’s condition before work begins, analyse the origins of the damage and get a prognosis for how the damage is likely to progress, all of which form the guidelines for subsequent planning steps right up to completion of the draft describing the measures required.
  • This includes investigating its current condition, identifying materials, and determining all relevant material properties.
  • We carry out research into foundations and stability with recognised specialists.
  • We document results for each specialist area in an assessment summary which includes a visualisation of the results in map form showing damage, materials, and current condition.

The organisation of our company, with personally responsible project managers and clearly demarcated roles, means we carry out all our projects with consistency.

  • Working from the analysis of the object’s condition and the initial plan, we develop an project execution plan, take samples, carry out tests, and write up service specifications.
  • Restoration materials and technology for the particular conservation and museum requirements are investigated and discussed before being implemented. Sample and test areas are also evaluated in order to create reliable plans and cost estimates.

An office fitted with modern equipment, our own databases, our subject library, and the research projects undertaken in partnership with scientific institutes all provide a solid foundation for our activity.

  • A basic feature of all planning steps is developing and utilising practical project or object databases in parallel and communicating the planning targets using visualisations.

An important pillar of our specialist restoration site management and supervision is the experience we have from carrying out our own restoration projects. Having a team with such complementary qualifications allows us to develop innovative solutions for client-specific requirements and problems rapidly and without complications.

  • We have supervision throughout the project and timelines based on our experience with previous projects, resulting in reliable planning and cost estimates.
  • We carry out cost control, taking into account detailed knowledge of restoration processes. We have an approval procedure with our building experts in place to guarantee quality.
  • Our restoration planning and site management work constantly takes team feedback on board.

We develop restoration materials and technology for conservation and museum projects. We check whether existing materials are suited to their current use. Here research and our own work mutually benefit each other.

Having our laboratory involved in the planning and coordination process ensures that reliable and sound solutions are found when looking into scientific parameters and material properties, analysing contaminants and salts, and measuring thermal conditions, etc.

  • We research a wide range of materials and art techniques and determine reliable and innovative methods for conservation, restoration and reconstruction for special projects, and those outside of standardisation, using prior experience.

Determining environmental influences, undertaking contaminant analysis, and measuring thermal building conditions with a view to creating adequate conditions for artefact storage in museums and protected buildings, is an integral part of our services.

  • This service includes producing care and maintenance instructions, compiling databases and object data for administrative purposes and condition monitoring, overseeing care and maintenance services, organising supervisory measures, and, finally, verifying the effectiveness of the approach and measures taken.

Overview

Project Planning
  • Planning and coordination of complex conservation projects in collaboration with scientific laboratories, institutes and other specialists
  • Plans, specifications, and service catalogues for the restoration of protected buildings and objects
  • Restoration supervision of building projects

 

Investigation of the Current Condition and Building History Research
  • Investigation of the paint history of buildings and objects
  • Research / archive research on the development of historic buildings
  • Investigation into the history of individual objects
  • Producing room equipment catalogues, condition maps, and reconstruction plans
  • Producing structural reports

 

Documentation
  • Computer-aided mapping, documentation, presentations and database applications
  • Photography, stereophotography, and digital image processing as part of the documentation
  • CAD and 3D simulations
  • Databases for practical use

 

In-house Research
  • Research on various materials and art techniques
  • Development of reliable methods for conservation, restoration and reconstruction for special projects and projects outside of standardisation

 

Interdisciplinary Collaboration
  • Collaboration with architects, conservationists, archaeologists, art historians, scientists, and skilled craftspeople
  • We offer one- to three-year intern/volunteer positions in our restoration workshop.
Practical Restoration
Conservation and Restoration of
  • wall paintings and architectural settings on buildings
  • sculptures and sculpted ornamentation for buildings made from marble, stone, stucco, ceramic, marble cement and artificial stone
  • interior and façade decorations made from natural or artificial stone, stucco, terracotta, and ceramic
  • canvas painting and wallpaper conservation
  • mosaic, marble cement
And:
  • high quality retouching of stains and imperfections in natural stone, exposed concrete, stone and terracotta
  • concrete retouching of indoor and outdoor areas with specially tested glazes.

 

Reconstruction and Creation of New Objects
  • Reconstruction of lost or destroyed artefacts, and interior and façade decorations using historical information and research on the project
  • New creation of sculptures and ornamentation for buildings in the case of complete loss – from design to the object itself – made from stone, stucco, bronze, ceramic, artificial stone, etc.

 

Education and Training
  • Conservators/restorers require specialized training in conservation and restoration techniques. We offer a preparatory programme for students wishing to be accepted for conservation/restoration study at tertiary level. We also run theoretical and practical professional development seminars on conservation and restoration issues.