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“the beauty of the decoration is revealed…”

Requested by Falkinger Andronas Conservation Architects to undertake the interior restoration of one of Australia’s busiest churches, our job was to restore the important 1842 cedar ceiling and to appropriately repaint the interior.

The church holds a significant place in the centre of the city and is a spiritual refuge to many from the hustle of the city life. Our job was to restore the important 1842 cedar ceiling and to appropriately repaint the interior.

Mulholland Restorations embarked on one of the most awkward jobs the company has undertaken. The historically important church is also Australia’s busiest church.

Six masses every day, with prayer and reflection time between the masses, we were able to work with the requirements of both parties to achieve a very satisfactory outcome.

We set out screening off a work area and quietly went about removing the multiple layers of accumulated surface coatings and contaminants. This belies the difficulty and dirtiness of the task, however, we persevered and succeeded in achieving a wonderful outcome.

Once the ceiling was a clean and dry timber surface we applied shellac to reinstate the original treatment and appearance. The results are a clean, warm and beautiful timber ceiling.

The rest of the church painting proceeded at a pace that suited the constant relocating of the community and the priests. The use of candles had resulted in the sanctuary ceiling becoming so black it was not possible to see the 1870’s painted decoration beneath.

A very careful system of over-paint removal was developed to achieve the required outcome. Now the beauty of the decoration is revealed and is a feature of this surprising ceiling.

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