Sizing/priming the reverse of the canvasApproveRejectUn-ApproveSubscribeUn-Unsubscribe
Question asked 2018-05-28 20:42:04 ...
Most recent comment 2018-05-29 07:23:25
Grounds / Priming
Hi! I guess this is a topic already answered, but I coudn't find it.
I've read both that the reverse of the canvas shouldn't be sized/primed and also that the current thread between conservators said that should be sized (and then mounted in a more rigid support). Well, should the back of the canvas, the raw linen, be sized and primed or not?
Answers and Comments
You are right that we have discussed similar issues in the past. The
following thread is germane:
That does not cover all aspects of your question, though. If you read the
above link you will see that many of the issues of covering the reverse of the
canvas result from eventual embrittlement or not covering the whole of the
canvas creating regions that would respond differently to environment changes
and, therefore, would eventually create planar deformation. If one sized the
from and back of a whole section of linen with an acrylic dispersion medium or
a PVA dispersion size and then stretched it over a stretcher or rigid support
(meaning that the whole of the image area had size on the front and back) I do
not see why that would be a problem.
Certainly one should not put animal glue size on both sides of the canvas. There
are problems with animal glue size under a ground but it would be a real major
disaster to have it on the reverse of the canvas where it has immediate access
to the environment.
However, as I wrote in that earlier thread, most of what you are trying to
achieve by coating the back of the canvas could be accomplished by either
stretching the canvas on a rigid support or by installing a backing board on
the back of the stretcher chassis.
It is true that we suggest stretching fabric over, or adhering to, a rigid support.
This does provide many benefits (see our resources section for particulars). We
also realize that the added weight, expense, and other factors will mean that
some will not be interested in going that route.
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