The LA Times visited Huntington senior paintings conservator and WUDPAC alumna Christina O’Connell as she prepares to treat Gainsborough’s iconic painting "Blue Boy." From the September 14, 2018 article by Deborah Vankin:
This month, Christina O’Connell begins conservation on
the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens’ iconic
“The Blue Boy,” Thomas Gainsborough’s 18th-century
masterpiece. The yearlong effort is part of the exhibition “Project Blue
Boy,” which O’Connell co-organized with curator Melinda McCurdy.
the exhibition, O’Connell will work between a temporary conservation
lab set up in the museum’s Thornton Portrait Gallery, as the public
watches, as well as in her private laboratory. Her permanent workspace
feels partly like a high school chemistry lab, filled with multiple
microscopes, and partly like a professional framer’s studio, with
spacious work surfaces and standing studio lights.
To read O’Connell’s take on her six “go to” tools of the trade (the Hi-R NEO 900 Haag-Streit surgical microscope, an Optivisor, a good easel, ample lighting, hand tools, and paint and varnish) and why they’re important to conservation science, read the LA Times online article here. A companion article by Vankin on the upcoming treatment of "Blue Boy" can be read here.