COMMERCIAL VINYL AND ACRYLIC FILL MATERIALS
MEG LOEW CRAFT, & JULIE A. SOLZ
While commercial fillers have been used successfully in gap filling in the treatment of a variety of different media, little scientific analysis has been published to assist the conservator in making informed choices. Information is incomplete and generic. Additional testing and analysis are needed, especially to reveal their composition.
Commercial fillers broaden treatment options for gap filling. Incomplete knowledge of the contents and the possibility of changing formulations present the greatest disadvantages in recommending their use. Several of the products, especially DAP Spackling Compound, Liquitex Modeling Paste, and Polyfilla, have been used for many years in ceramic and sculpture treatment without reports of any resultant conservation problems. The newer products require additional testing and observation to determine safety and effectiveness in specific treatment situations.
Many thanks to Ellen Pearlstein, Brooklyn Museum, and Donna Strahan, Walters Art Gallery, for their encouragment; to Carolyn Tomkiewicz, Brooklyn Museum, and Sarah Fisher, National Gallery of Art, for providing information; and to Alexis Miller and Lauren Smith, conservation students at the University of Delaware/Winterthur Museum Art Conservation Program for helping collect information.