Before and After: Monte Cassino Shrine at St. Meinrad Archabbey

I always enjoy sharing the work of those who advertise with us -- there's a reason, after all, that they are advertising here! -- and in this instance I wanted to share a "before and after" that comes from Conrad Schmitt Studios and their work on the Monte Cassino Shrine at Saint Meinrad Archabbey in Indiana.

This might seem less a "before and after" in the usual sense that  a "phase one" and "phase two" but this is a case of restoring ornament that was lost at one point in recent history and restored (even if not identical) at another.

With that, here is the excellent work that the archabbey commissioned and Conrad Schmitt Studios executed.



Conrad Schmitt details their work on the shrine chapel as follows:
Great care was taken to document .. identify original patterns that were under layers of paint. Once missing elements were discovered, a sketch was developed and representative samples were provided for approval. Working side by side with other contractors in the space, CSS artists began the conservation of the existing decoration. Murals were carefully cleaned and cracks were filled. A barrier varnish was applied on sound areas to encapsulate and preserve the original paint.  Water-damaged areas and previous, poor conservation attempts were in-fill painted.  Additional work in the Shrine included the restoration of a statue, the refinishing of the altar and the application of a faux granite finish to conceal new HVAC components.
Here was the original chapel with the original altar and its original decoration. While we might yet hope for a restoration of the reredos of the shrine altar, we can certainly rejoice in the restoration of decorative work that was lost at some point in the recent history of this chapel.

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