Cleanfax Photo Challenge: The million-dollar tapestry


If the phone rang today and you were offered a job cleaning a million-dollar tapestry by a famed artist would you accept?

Greg Turcotte of Heirloom Oriental Rug Cleaning in Calgary, Alberta, experienced just this when he was offered a chance to clean Unity, a massive piece of artistry from 1974 by world-renowned artistic weaver Tamara Jaworska, which hangs in the lobby of Gulf Canada Square in Calgary, according to The Globe and Mail.

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Greg describes this particular job: “This is the ‘Unity’ tapestry by Tamara Jaworska, and it is about 22 by 33 feet in size. It is valued at $1 million! We had to clean this on site and by hand. This took two days for us to complete. There were many areas that were fragile. The piece is made up of Irish linen, hand-spun wool, commercial wool, horse hair, silver thread, Lurex® (metallic yarns) and feathers, and the occasional section was highlighted with some synthetic yarns. We also had areas that had real pieces of dried grass. This was particularly difficult with wet cleaning. The grass began to turn to mush when exposed to water, so low moisture cleaning was important. There were many areas highlighted with feathers. The feathers were simply pushed into the yarns and would remove easily, so extra care had to be used in those areas so as not to lose any.”

Cleanfax Staff

Cleanfax provides cleaning and restoration professionals with information designed to help them manage and grow their businesses.

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