The Museum Shop, and more importantly is Conservator, Richard H. Kornemann have been nationally recognized for the restoration work done on oil paintings and Japanese woodblocks from the 1800’s. The process for Oil painting restoration involves devarnishing the oil then filling in any loss areas, in painting with B72 acryloid and dry ground pigments and a carrier. Some times the canvas has a problem with paint flaking off or bubbling. The treatment is to vacuum line it with a vacuum heat press. Bonding both the original canvas with a new support fiberglass canvas. We use a microcrystalline wax heated and bonded to both the original canvas and the fiberglass. All wax from the surface is removed and the painting is than stretched. Once the in painting is completed and it has dried a sealer can be applied. Your choice is a Damar Varnish gloss or a Matte Varnish brush application.
Of course at The Museum Shop, photographs are taken before, during, and after the restoration process has been completed.
Rare documents are restored with a spotting removal machine and deacidification, relaxing the paper and proper framing to preserve the original with museum rag boards with an appropriate framing choice for the period. We have worked on George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, James Madison, and Thomas Jefferson rare documents.
Photographs are copied for clients and restored even with missing parts of the image are not their. Brown photos can be turned back into black and whites. Faded color can be partially restored and improved. We usually give you a one to one image just like the original. The Smithsonian sets the standard by never retouching the original image because if you are working on an eye and make a mistake you cannot get the eye back. A new photograph is made and that is retouched and given to the client.
Cataloging and photography is made of entire collections with measurements and value estimates can be accessed.
Examinations are made by ultraviolet and infrared inspections. UV time exposures are made to capture newly retouched areas showing by illumination of a color. This will help a document the actual condition of the oil painting no matter how old or new it may be. Forgeries are discovered by this method of inspection. Shadowgraphs can be made for oil paintings showing a clear through view of the paint layers. Earlier brushwork can be exposed to the eye by using a shadowgraph. This is like an x-ray by your Doctor. A raking light is used to expose the paint layers that are raised and have troubled areas. Photographs are taken with a raking light to show the subjects condition.
Years of experience are needed to examine artwork to determine what treatment can be performed. Subtle differences are observed to make the proper decisions.
Please take a moment to read through the other processes that we use at The Museum Shop which we have included in our website, they should give you a very good idea of what we do to keep your priceless art looking great!