Friday, October 9, 2009
I shouldn't be but I was startled!
I've been cleaning paintings for 35 years and I shouldn't be surprised when doing a cleaning test but when gorgeous baby blue original color comes popping out from underneath a cruddy brown varnish, it always surprises me! What's more interesting about this photo is (if you'll notice the darker streaks in the sky), there is left over dark varnish from when someone else tried to clean it before. I can't believe they thought this painting was clean, can you? BTW, the only safe thing I can recommend if you are a doer-your-selfer are Q-tips and saliva. Any cruddy surface that requires a more aggressive cleaning could be damaged in the process so let a professional conservator look at it. In history, more paintings have been ruined by inept cleaning that by all the volcanoes, hurricanes, earthquakes... and grandkids all put together.