final issue 30 web - Flipbook - Page 51
Above, fig. 11 Detail, South portal,
c. 1140. Stone Church of St Mary and St
David, Kilpeck. © Web Gallery of Art
Above, fig. 14 Detail, reconstruction of
the Tyldal chair, 2019. Image by the
Above, fig. 12 Illuminated decorat ed initial,
from Winchester, 11th - 12th century.
© British Library
Above, fig. 13 Tyldal Chair, details. © Historical
Above, fig. 15 Figure flanked by a lion and a
dragon. St. Hall vard Cathedral, now on
Oslo Cathedral, 12th century. © tahiti.fi
Above, fig. 16 Section of decorated string
course. Man flanked by beasts biting his beard,
c. 12th century. St Augustine‘s Abbey,
Canterbury. Image by the author.
The chair was made entirely with hand tools researched
for their historical accuracy and partly based on the tool
marks present on the original piece. These included axes,
hand plains, draw knifes and chisels. The timber was cut
to size and hand-planed. After several research trips to
Oslo, to photograph the original chair and take exact
measurements, the drawings were produced and traced
on the timber to be carved (Fig. 19). Additional reference
images were requested prior to the carving process from
the Historical Museum Oslo.
Considering the complexity of scenes depicted on the
chair the study of the different iconographies represents
an additional and vast area of research. Notable first attempts have been made during the 1960ies by Fischer
(1963) and Brage Irgens Larsen (1968).
Reconstruction of the Tyldal Chair
The project took place between 2018-19 at City & Guilds
London Art School and emerged as a result of a personal
interest in the Tyldal Chair. The project formed part of
the author’s Postgraduate Degree and was funded
through a private supporter who wished to acquire the
chair after its completion.
Approximately 360 hours were invested in collecting and
preparing the wood and assembling the 16 individual
pieces of the chair. A similar amount of time was needed
to draw out and carve the ornaments, resulting in an
approximate of 720 hours of work for the reconstruc tion.
This includes also travel and delivery time.
The reconstruction was made in freshly cut English timber; silver birch was used for the main parts of the chair
and spruce for the seat. The characteristic L-shaped rails
were sourced from a Norwegian moor, were tree roots are
likely to grow in the particular curved shape that was used
to form the original handrests (Fig. 17-18).
The nails on the handrests were made especially by a
London blacksmith, based on originals from the 12th
century (Fig. 20). The four nails present in the round of
the back rest (Fig. 10) were omitted in the reconstruction
as they probably date to a later period.
Conservation & Heritage Journal