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MITRA Forum Question Details

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  • Golden Black Gesso and Egg TemperaApproveRejectUn-ApproveSubscribeUn-Unsubscribe
    Question asked 2019-01-13 17:20:53 ... Most recent comment 2019-01-17 12:16:32
    Grounds / Priming Egg Tempera

    ​I just completed a metalpoint drawing on Golden Black Gesso.  I applied egg tempera (fairly densely painted, in multiple layers) on a portion of the drawing.  It's been my experience that egg tempera behaves best and ahderes longest on grounds with a lot of porosity, so that mechancial adhesion can take place; and for this reason I don't generally work on synthetic polymer grounds unless they have a lot of added solids and extra absorbency.  The egg tempera behaved pretty well a top the black gesso (a bit more sensitive to lifting, but not too much), so I'm wondering about the composition of the ground. Is Golden's black gesso high in solids, and/or considered more absorbent than regular acrylic gesso?  Has Golden (or anyone else) done testing of egg tempera on black gesso, to see how well it adheres in the long term?


    Koo Schadler 

Answers and Comments

  • EditDeleteModerator Answer

    Hi Koo -

    Let me jump in here as obviously this is a Golden product and I will be in the best position to answer. See my comments below:

    Is Golden's black gesso high in solids, and/or considered more absorbent than regular acrylic gesso?  

    • We have never used absorbency as a specific metric for these products, so your reporting is really the first time this potential difference was brought to our attention.  In looking into it further, I can report that indeed the Black Gesso does have a higher level of solids. It also uses a different combination of fillers than the White Gesso as obviously relying as heavily on calcium carbonate would cause the black to appear more dark grayish.
    • Unfortunately we have not. On the good side, the Black Gesso should be fairly stable, in terms of physical properties, over its lifetime, and while likely not as unresponsive to changes in humidity as a traditional chalk gesso, the divergence is mostly at higher humidity. See this image from our article on Using Oils With Acrylics as one data point comparing chalk gesso to acrylic paint:

      But until actual testing, it remains a touch of an unknown.

    Sarah Sands, Senior Technical Specialist, Golden Artist Colors
    2019-01-14 15:10:18
  • ApproveRejectUn-ApproveUser Comment

    ​Thanks, Sarah. You are always straightforward, helpful,  and well informed - it's appreciated.  Koo

    2019-01-17 12:16:32

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