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topic 8980

Indian brass statues: how to polish them?


I bought 4 brass statues (hidu gods and goddesses) during a recent trip to India. Each is about 35 lbs. I thought the look they have was intended to be like that, but now I realize that if I polished them correctly they would look a lot nicer.

One seems to have been covered with a heavy oil that smells almost like automobile oil and I started cleaning that just with water and detergent, with the idea of using the right polish later on. Other has a reddish dust which I'm not sure is to give it a certain look or if it needs cleaning. Of the four, two have a dark, almost black coating that makes them look like onyx. Two have a combination of copper color and golden color. The copper seems to come off (golden beneath) if I rub it with polish, and I'm afraid I'm damaging it.

In any case, by now I've probably shown enough ignorance about brass art and perhaps you can advice me on what to do to clean these statues.

Thank you,

Martha Martinez
- Germantown, Maryland, USA

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