Digital Surface Conservation

New methods have been developed by Craven Dunnill Jackfield (CDJ) to integrate 3D technologies into its specialist ceramic restoration and manufacturing process.

Pure & true conservation: Enables the preservation and exact replication of original handcrafts, ceramic skills and artworks.
Skill preservation: Marriage of technology with artisanship, with a co-dependence on each side to achieve the optimal result.

Non-intrusive process: Removal of any requirement to destruct and reconstruct. All surveying carried out while in situ.
Early consultation: Involvement and expert advice at the commencement of any project to improve the accuracy and reduce cost.

Business continuity: Consultations can be done on site, with no impact to business operations.
Conservation planning approvals: Consultation expertise to support the efficient acquisition of any necessary planning consents, and ensure local authority applications are handled accurately.

Every restoration project is unique, requiring the application of specialist ceramic modelling skills to faithfully manufacture accurate replacements.

Existing artworks and architectural features are surveyed, with working models and moulds created to interpret the complex 3D shape of the item beneath the glaze layers of an original sample. Recent advancements in our production capabilities now allow CDJ to 3D-scan ceramic artworks in situ – without the need to remove them from the wall – and subsequently reproduce new models and moulds for faithful reproduction which cannot be achieved using photography.

Previous methods relied on removing the artwork from the wall, potentially damaging the originals, and having new models hand carved by eye; which can lead to deviation from the original due to the subtle marks inherent to handcraft.
By adopting new 3D scanning technologies, turnaround times have been greatly reduced, and the original artworks are stored digitally and indefinitely without taking up space in a warehouse or with the risk of degradation / weather damage.

Importantly, the technology only works in unison with hand-carving, rather than replacing it entirely. These artworks are often complex, and hand-finishing is necessary to retain the true aesthetic of hand-crafted tiles, which would appear too precise to pass as the original artworks, which are often decades, or even centuries, old.

Craven Dunnill Jackfield are already working closely with conservation architects, cultural property clients and planning authorities across numerous conservation projects in commercial, transport, hospitality, public buildings, and infrastructure sectors in the UK and can offer the service to international markets as the equipment is compact and easy to transport.

The iconic decorative wall tiles of Harrods in London was one of the first applications of the technology. It is now being adopted on many ceramic conservation projects, including the Black Country Museum, Stanley Arts Centre, and listed hospitality venues and swimming pools.

If in doubt about the suitability of a product for a given installation, or if you have a query concerning any of our products or services or would like more information, then please do contact us for further advice.