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Can someone provide specific gesso recipes used in 16th-century Italy and/or provide resources that might expound upon such recipes? Thank you.
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This has some relevant information on that topic and historical period: https://www.getty.edu/conservation/publications_resources/pdf_publications/pdf/historical_paintings.pdf
is a fine place to start. For a fuller survey of historical grounds, including
the period you mention, I would interlibrary loan the following books,
especially the latter.
Preparation for Painting: The Artist’s Choice and Its
Consequence. Archetype Publications
A Perfect Ground: Preparatory Layers for Oil Paintings 1550-1900
by Maartje Stols-Witlox. Archetype Publications.
I worked with Maartje one summer and she is really a fount
of knowledge on grounds. It was the subject of her PhD as well.
Coming to this a little late I realize, and I completely concur that A Perfect Ground: Preparatory Layers for Oil Paintings 1550-1900 by Maartje Stols-Witlox is an incredible resource. While likely not identical, and I haven't taken the time to compare them, I did want to note that her PhD Thesis is still publically available online from the Amsterdam School of Historical Studies. Just search for her name + PhD Thesis.