Project – "Yablanski House"
Location – 18 Tsar Osvoboditel Blvd., Sofia
Dates back to – The house was built in 1906 – 1907
Statute - The house was announced as a cultural monument of national significance (1955). Nowadays the building is a private property.
Restoration process – May 2009 – March 2011
Chief executer – "CST STROI INGENERING"
"ECO ART" Burgas – cornice and plaster executers etc.
CONSTRUCTIVE TEAM OF "NIKOLAI OM LTD"
RESTORATION HISTORY Of "Yablanski House", Sofia
The life of the Artist is an Adventure even along the way of his/ her purposeful progress. The unexpected happens very often .I have passed hundreds of times by this house since the years of my youth . It always evoked something special and the feeling that I have something common with it, one day was realized! It is incredible!
Today, after almost two years of work for our whole group, the sense of Satisfaction with the final result is the most important – we listen with a smile to the words of the numerous streams of people passing by.
In the beginning the challenges were frightening and many – a top architectural monument in the heart of the Capital, a long public discussion about it by the most eminent experts, a very bad condition of both construction and the plastic arts, rivalry with the conceptions of other firms , we as a new generation of artists… I acted without hesitation as D. Yablanski did 105 years ago – I called the advisers from Vienna, because there was no room for mistakes in this process as well as because of a reason that the Stucco plastic arts are not trained in details as a technology of restoration in Bulgaria.
We started with 100% restoration approach – preserving of the existing plastic arts, consolidating and retouching as well as reconstruction of the missing elements which because of their repetition could be reconstructed by taking prints. Samples and analysis of all materials used by Andrea Grais were analyzed in laboratories in Vienna. All of the analyses and technological directions were performed by Klaus Wedening – one of the leading restorers in Vienna, and the whole restoration process was guided by Elizabeth Penker in place –a sculptor and restorer. The basic team- the brothers Tomas and Svetoslav Zikovski and the sculptor Kostadin Nenov as well as about twenty artists worked together on the entire restoration. Precise and continuous cleaning of the whole plastic arts decorations, consolidating and careful retouch , taking prints and reconstructing elements as the most difficult was with the badly damaged “ snails “ high on the East façade. Grais has done thin casts from roman cement in 1905 – a new and expensive material. Now some of them were gathered from dozens of broken pieces and fixed with the newest and rust-resisting anchors. The restoration of the irretrievably lost sculptures from the cornice of the East façade was curious too. Dozens of photographs which I personally took during my tour of similar objects – Zagreb, Vienna, Budapest, Trieste etc. were the initial models for the new sculptures whose scale and proportions were kept after long peering into the survival old pictures of the House. All that was supplemented by the work of Eco Art, Burgas , on the cornices and plasters in strict co-operation with the chief executer CST Stroi Ingenering.
Yet we were faced with the most difficult challenge – the unique ceilings and foyer on the first floor. With the bad constructional condition of the House they were seriously damaged and could not be kept. All those ornaments were built after an old technology –mixed technique of a surface layer of plaster with unusually great complexity. Then we realized the only possible thing in order not to lose them – prints were taken precisely and structure taking of prints was done. Again, all ornaments were made after those moulds and it was particularly complicated with the hollow cast of the ending P profile big cornice. Based on the complexity of the composition and relief I think that here , for the first time in Bulgaria, such process of restoration was realized.
From now on Yablanski House began a new life – we have prepared the work with sufficient professional precision , even for the next restoration after 100 years.
Nikolai Ivanov – project manager