In many cases, the paintings we come across have had restoration treatment of some kind in the past. Sometimes these repairs have held up well, but more often these repairs were done using unsuitable materials that, over time, can do more harm than good.
This painting had been lined in a previous restoration. In the past, restoration adhesives tended to dry out and become brittle over time, so restorers would sometimes add honey or molasses to help retain some flexibility. The resulting sugary mix attracted insects who ate away at much of the lining canvas and adhesive.
|Reverse of canvas: Before||Lining canvas being carefully removed||Reverse of canvas after relining with stable materials|
The painting below had been repaired in the past using excessive, mismatched paint. The result was distracting, and covered over original paint.
(In addition to removal of old restoration paint, this painting was cleaned.)
|Before treatment||After cleaning: Detail of old inpaint||After removal of inpaint|