Cleaning Contemporary Concrete Artwork at the Wormsley Estate

This was an unusual request to clean a modern piece of contemporary artwork by New York City artist Mel Kendrick on display in one of the gardens of the Wormsley Estate. I’m no art expert but having done some research on the internet it appears to be part of a collection known as “Markers” that were on display at the Madison Square Park in 2009. The work is made from concrete cast into different coloured sections and fitted together to form a rather larger piece of art which having been exposed to the UK elements was now starting to discolour and go orange in part.

Mel Kendrick Markers Modern Art Wormsley Before Cleaning

Cleaning Modern Concrete Artwork

Being such a prestigious work of art i had to be careful not to damage the stone in anyway so after careful consideration I worked out a process using an alkaline cleaning product Tile Doctor Pro-Clean.

Mel Kendrick Markers Modern Art Wormsley Before Cleaning Mel Kendrick Markers Modern Art Wormsley Before Cleaning

To get the statue clean I used a warm water dilution of Tile Doctor Pro Clean working it into small areas at a time spraying the solution on and scrubbing with a brush, then rinsing it off with clean water. This process took some time but certainly did the trick.

Sealing a Concrete Artwork

With this project being outdoors and with it taking a couple of days I had to pick a good weather window and fortunately the weather held out long enough so I could continue and seal the concrete in order to protect it going forward. Again careful consideration had to be given to the choice of sealer and in the end I went with Tile Doctor Ultra Seal which is an impregnating sealer that soaks into the pores protecting from within and most importantly it’s a natural look sealer that does not change or enhance the colours.

Mel Kendrick Markers Modern Art Wormsley After Cleaning

If you’re a lover a modern art then you should appreciate the difference and will agree with me that the statue now looks new again.

Modern Statue Artwork Cleaned and Sealed in Oxfordshire

2 thoughts on “Cleaning Contemporary Concrete Artwork at the Wormsley Estate

  1. Dear Tile Doctor,

    To my surprise, I recently came across your post and pictures concerning “Cleaning Contemporary Concrete Artwork at the Wormsley Estate.”

    As the artist who created the piece, “Marker #4,” I was amazed at the discoloration that had occurred in the one year since it was installed. In the states, where a number of the pieces are installed, I have never seen anything like it. It almost appears to be rust stains which I know to not be the case as there is no steel in the piece except for threaded stainless steel rod that is used as re bar in the interior.

    What is going on in your English air and rain that would cause this?

    Anyway, I am most happy you were given the job of cleaning, sealing and restoring it to the original finish. I am glad to know that you are there to oversee future issues with the surface and will certainly keep you in mind if I do another installation in the British Isles.

    I am sending this letter with a link to your site to David Kucera Inc. in Gardiner, NY who fabricated this work for me.


    Mel Kendrick

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