Category Archives: Restoration of paintings


    Removing discoloured varnish from an oil painting When removing varnish from a painting one winds a small ball of cotton wool around a wooden stick to form a cotton bud. This is then dipped into the solvent and disposed onto the varnished surface […]


  Jean-Baptiste or James One day a client brought this painting in for restoration. The “Portrait of a Young Lady Being Kissed by a Bird”, oil on canvas, 53.2 x 38.5 cm The damage was a small hole in the shoulder of the young woman and a precarious […]


The Cleaning of Paintings

The cleaning of paintings is a very delicate and time consuming task. Broadly one can differentiate between: surface cleaning  varnish removal  removal of over-paint Depending on the nature of the substance that covers the original paint structure a variety of solvents, soaps, enzymes and mechanical […]

The Reverse Side of Paintings

Discoveries on the reverse side of paintings sometimes reveal the true story behind a pretty facade   Paper stuck to the reverse of paintings and their frames is well intended. It is meant to be a protective barrier between the work of art and the elements. Many commercial […]

Restoring Miniatures

On a visit to Vienna in search of a reputable Miniature restorer, I was told there were one or two. Unfortunately I could not find even one. Miniature restorers seem to be a very rare breed – and understandably so. Miniature restoration is probably the most intricate […]

Over painted paintings
Early cases of plastic surgery

It does not happen often, but ever now and again one of those cases comes along. Here someone did not like the original looks of the woman portrayed. The area of the face was completely over-painted. It was made to look much younger and slimmer. […]