Monday, December 7, 2009

Watch out for your cleaning lady! Paintings don't like damp rags.

There are several places on this painting that are flaking in small pin point patterns. This is typical of paint layers that are wiped with damp rags... repeatedly. Finishes on frames also don't react well! I cleaned a gorgeous California landscape from the 1920's by John Gamble once upon a time; a $45k picture with coastline and poppies that was otherwise in perfect condition. About 10 years later, it returned to my lab and it was flaking everywhere in these small pin point patterns. A completely avoidable situation not to mention the loss of value. In the case of the painting in this photo, what more dangerous spot to have flaking than the signature!?

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