Conservationists at the Getty Museum use their expert knowledge and craftsmanship to recreate the missing hand and fingers of the Roman marble statue Lansdowne Hermes.
Physical evidence helped the conservators understand the statues original composition along with alterations made during previous restorations. Additional evidence came from other documentation and sketches of the statue.
A single finger was recreated and from a mold of that finger, conservators were able to recreate the other fingers. Using an epoxy putty, each cast finger was cut at the joint and shaped to recreate the original pose of the hand. Epoxy putty can be molded and modeled like a clay and worked with hand tools when solid without an additional curing process.
The resulting figures could be molded to the relief of the original marble surface and joined and painted to make a seamless recreation.