Our Parks Care team has been busy caring for sculpture and our border beds.

Over time, the Friends has established a comprehensive conservation program for the 42 sculptures, tablets, plaques, and fountains we care for in the three parks. Working with Collections Care Manager Sarah Hutt, we decide on a selection of monuments to focus on each year, moving through a regular cycle of conservation cleaning in order to keep each piece in good condition.

This year, it is George’s turn! Over time the coating on the George Washington statue in the Public Garden wears off. Our conservators at Daedalus remove the old coat of protective Incralac and apply fresh material to the sculpture. Once it has dried, George is covered with multiple layers of wax to protect him from the elements. This work keeps the statue’s condition stable, ensuring environmental factors like acid rain cannot harm the bronze.

Cleaning takes approximately three weeks, depending on weather. This year’s effort is wrapping up as we write this update.

Masons from JAJ Co. made cosmetic repairs to the stone and basin at the Brewer Fountain, ensuring the iconic landmark is ready for the warm summer months ahead. Our conservators at Daedalus completed their annual cleaning and waxing of the bronze artwork, as well. The team from Tierney Contracting worked to get the water flowing, and the fountain will once again be fully operational on the Plaza starting this weekend.

Additionally, we “made way” for small-scale sculpture cleaning! After the routine cleaning of the Brewer Fountain and George Washington sculpture, Daedalus stopped by Boston’s favorite Ducklings to give the bronze a fresh clean and new coat of wax.

The Cheers Gate in the Public Garden also got a refresh. Under the supervision of Director of Capital Projects & Parks Care Rebecca McKevitz, we planted a selection of shrubs, perennials, and groundcovers, improving the aesthetics of the beds at this entrance and enhancing safety and views with removal of tall shrubs. Take a look the next time you’re in the Garden!

View a Cheers Gate planting diagram here.