Skip to Main Content
Sign In
Toggle Navigation

Open the Navigation Management window, which can be used to view the full current branch of the menu tree, and edit it.

  • Instagram
  • Facebook

MITRA Forum Question Details

Image Picker for Section 0


  • Glossiest varnishesApproveRejectUn-ApproveSubscribeUn-Unsubscribe
    Question asked 2016-11-18 20:24:23 ... Most recent comment 2016-11-18 21:55:00
    Hi everyone, which is the glossiest varnish or finishing technique that you know of? I'd like my paintings to keep that 'wet look' but damar is still not glossy enough... ideally a varnish that won't discolour over the years. I don't mind even burnishing it if you feel that can improve gloss? Thanks.

Answers and Comments

  • EditDeleteModerator AnswerAs you mention damar (or dammar), I am assuming that you are talking about varnishing oil, artist's alkyd, or acrylic dispersion paintings. The glossiest varnish generally approved by the conservation community for these paint systems is based on Regalrez 1094. It is sold as a dry resin from conservation suppliers and as a solution (often under proprietary names) by a few artists and conservation materials suppliers (eg Gamvar, UVS Finishing varnish, and others). A few coats of this on a well dried painting will create a very wet and glossy surface, no burnishing required. Others will work but Regalrez is glossier. The other really nice thing about Regalrez 1094 is that it is soluble and reversible in very low polarity solvents (eg odorless mineral spirits) meaning that if your work ever needs to be conserved in the future, the varnish can be reduced or removed in solvents that are unlikely to affect your original paint as long as you are following sound painting practices (compatible media, sensible layering, adequate dry times, etc)
    Baade, Brian
    2016-11-18 22:33:49
  • ApproveRejectUn-ApproveUser CommentThank you Brian, that was a major help. Meanwhile I came across a website that also mentions ArkonĀ® P-90. What's your opinion on its gloss levels vs Regalrez? Cheers.
    2016-11-19 10:07:56
  • EditDeleteModerator AnswerYes Arkon P-90 is a fairly glossy, low molecular weight varnish that has been used in conservation. When compared to Regalrez (at least based on artificial aging tests) it does appear to require more polar (stronger) solvents to remove after a period of time and requiresTinuvin 292 or some hindered amine light stabilizer added to counteract potential yellowing. According to research carried out by conservation scientist Rene de la Rie and others in the early 90s it is not as "stable" as Regalrez. It does not sound like a terrible product by any means; however, when Regalrez was formulated it more or less superseded the need to use Arkon P-90 as Regalrez appears to have generated better results when subjected to the same range of tests. You can read more about all of this information on the American Institute for Conservation's Paintings Specialty Group Wiki that focuses on varnishes here:
    Kristin deGhetaldi
    2016-11-19 10:40:28
  • EditDeleteModerator AnswerI would also add that Gamblin has some nice videos and tips relating to varnishing with Regalrez (otherwise known as Gamvar) on their website that may be of some interest.
    Kristin deGhetaldi
    2016-11-19 10:41:21

Page Settings and MetaData:
(Not Shown on the Page)
Page Settings
MetaData for Search Engine Optimization
MITRA Forum Question Details
This page cannot be accessed until you accept the Terms of Use, which can be found here.
Please note that this Terms of Use system uses cookies. If you have cookies disabled you will not be able to accept the agreement. If you delete our cookies you will need to re-accept the Terms of Use.
  • The Department of Art Conservation
  • 303 Old College
  • University of Delaware
  • Newark, DE 19716, USA
  • Phone: 302-831-3489