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Related Links - Technical Art History and the Conservation of Easel Paintings

National Gallery Technical Bulletin - An excellent resource for technical art history topics.  Now available for free as downloadable pdfs.

Closer to Van Eyck - Interactive website with high-resolution images, X-radiography, and IRR of Jan van Eyck’s Ghent Altarpiece.

La Joconde - Up close and personal experience with the Mona Lisa. Hosted by the Louvre, this website features a "curtain" view mode that allows the user to compare visible light, ultraviolet light, infrared, and x-ray images of the Mona Lisa simultaneously.

Frames and Supports in 15th and 16th century Southern Netherlandish Painting - Interactive e-Book published by KIRK-IRPA, the Royal Institute for Cultural Heritage in Brussels. Complete with high resolution images and extensive technical information.

Wooden Supports in 12th to 16th Panel Paintings - A free on-line publication courtesy of CATS with support from the Getty Foundation. Includes comprehensive technical glossary, bibliography, and painting index.

Bosch Research and Conservation Project - High resolution X-ray, IRR, and color images of several works by Bosch including additional technical information.

Making Art in Tudor Britain - Organized by the Conservation Department at National Portrait Gallery in London, this site includes interactive videos, glossaries, and case studies featuring Tudor and Jacobean painting techniques.

Cranach Digital Archive - A collaborative project involving multiple institutions featuring technical information relating to Lucas Cranach and his workshop.

Rembrandt Database - Comprehensive database of technical information relating to Rembrandt's oeuvre, including non-destructive imaging, cross-sectional analysis, and other relevant data.

Raphael Research Project - A collaborative effort on behalf of twenty-six institutions, featuring a vast body of technical information relating to Raphael's paintings in collections worldwide.

On-line Picasso Project - An exhaustive and comprehensive online database containing images, archives, and biographical information relating to Pablo Picasso and his works.

ArtMatters - International Journal for Technical Art History - ArtMatters is an interdisciplinary, on line, peer-reviewed journal providing a platform for the relatively new but rapidly developing field of technical art history.

Pigments through the Ages - Comprehensive list of pigments with case studies and examples with X-Radiography, IRR, UV, and more.

Colour Context: A Database on Colour Practice and Knowledge - An extensive database hosted by the Max Planck Institute that consists of historical recipes for pigments, dyes, and other art materials collected from over 600 manuscripts.

"Feast of the Gods" - Interactive website on Bellini/Titian’s Feast of the Gods. Pigment analysis, cross-sections, X-radiography, IRR, and more.

Restoring "The Triumph of David" - Interactive website outlining the two-year restoration project of a 20 by 12 ft. 17th-century Italian painting at Villanova University. Site consists of technical data including cross-sectional analysis, X-ray/IRR imaging, SEM-EDS, and XRF analysis.

A Bounty of Frames - National Gallery of Art, Washington - An excellent summary of the history of frames and frame construction, complete with images.

Conservation Reel - Conservation Reel is a project to gather and present video on art conservation and collections care in an online resource intended for museum and conservation professionals, students, and interested members of the general public.  The project started in 2011 with support from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation.

Conservation - Victoria and Albert Museum - Comprehensive website dedicated to the conservation department's blog, journal, research, and other related projects.

Centre for Art Technological Studies and Conservation (CATS) - Centre located at the Statens Museum for Kunst (SMK) in Copenhagen.  CATS promotes technological research devoted to artistic materials, the dissemination of technical information, and international collaborations through publications, databases, and conferences.

Impressionist Paintings Website - Wallraf-Richartz Museum - Offers downloadable technical images, reports, and a glossary for help with technical terms.

Vincent Van Gogh: The Letters - Comprehensive database created by the Van Gogh Museum and the Huygens Institute featuring digital copies of Van Gogh's letters, complete with a glossary, search engine, and bibliography.

Monet and Renoir: Paintings and Drawings at the Art Institute of Chicago - The first in a series of Online Scholarly Catalogues put out by various institutions.  Catalogues include high resolution images, x-ray, infrared, and other technical images.

Analytical Tools and Techniques for Examining Tudor and Jacobean Paintings - A collaborative technical art history website project between Yale University and the Yale Center for British Art.

Conservation Notes - Terra Foundation for American Art - Highlights including video clips, x-ray images, and more relating to the conservation and technical study of American art.

American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works - Professional association of art conservators in the US. Offers general information about conservation and a searchable list of conservators by region.

Fine Arts Conservancy Website - Conservation glossary with useful pictures.

A Primer for Materials, Methods, and Techniques of Conservation - Useful summary compiled by the conservation department at the North Carolina Museum of Art.

Structural Conservation of Panel Paintings: Proceedings of a Symposium at the J. Paul Getty Museum - Downloadable pdf of conference proceedings.  The Getty Conservation Institute has additional publications relating to conservation and preservation on their website here.

University of Amsterdam Digital Repository - Preparatory Layers for Oil Paintings, 1500-1900 - A link to a PhD thesis by Dr. Maarte J. N. Stols-Witlox that includes historical recipes for preparatory layers for oil paintings in manuals, manuscripts and handbooks in North West Europe.

AATA Online: Abstracts of International Conservation Literature - Searchable database containing thousands of abstracts including conference proceedings, journals, articles, and texts (hosted by the Getty Conservation Institute).

INCCA - International Network for the Conservation of Contemporary Art - An interactive forum and database geared towards professionals who are dedicated to the preservation of Modern/Contemporary Art.  Also visit the newly formed group Voices in Contemporary Art (VoCA).

Guide Labreuche - An online guide to Paris artists' suppliers from 1790-1960.

Artists, their materials and suppliers - An exhaustive account of artists's suppliers, studio practice, and historic materials organized by the National Portrait Gallery in London.

ColourLex - Art and Science - A website focusing on traditional painting materials and techniques, complete with links, videos, and other web features.

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Additional Texts - Technical Art History and Conservation of Easel Paintings

Bomford, David.  A Closer Look: Conservation of Paintings. London: National Gallery London Publications, 2009.

Bomford, David, Jo Kirby, Ashok Roy, Alex Ruger, and Raymond White. Art in the Making: Rembrandt. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2006.

Bomford, David, Sarah Herring, Jo Kirby, Christopher Riopelle, and Ashok Roy. Art in the Making: Degas. London: National Gallery London Publications, 2004.

Bomford, David, Rachel Billinge, Lorne Campbell, Jill Dunkerton, Susan Foister, Jo Kirby, Carol Plazzotta, Ashok Roy, and Marika Spring. Art in the Making: Underdrawings in Renaissance Paintings. London: National Gallery London Publications, 2002.

Bomford, David, John Leighton, Jo Kirby, and Ashok Roy. Art in the Making: Impressionism. London: National Gallery London Publications, 1991.

Bomford, David, Jill Dunkerton, Dillian Gordon, Ashok Roy, and Jo Kirby. Italian Painting Before 1400: Art in the Making. London: National Gallery London Publications,1989.

Broecke, Lara. Cennino Cennini's 'Il Libro dell'Arte': A New English Translation and Commentary and Italian Transcription. London: Archetype Publications, 2015.

Callen, Anthea. The Art of Impressionism. Painting Technique & the Making of Modernity. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2000.

Cennini, Cennino.  Cennino d'Andrea Cennini’s The Craftsman's Handbook: Il Libro dell' Arte. Translated by Daniel V. Thompson, Jr. New York: Dover Publications, 1954 [1960].

Dunkerton, Jill, Susan Foister, and Nicholas Penny. Dürer to Veronese. Sixteenth-Century Painting in the National Gallery. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1999.

Dunkerton, Jill, Susan Foister, Dillian Gordon, and Nicholas Penny. Giotto to Dürer. Early Renaissance Painting in The National Gallery.  New Haven: Yale University Press/National Gallery Publications, 1991. 

Kirby, Jo. A Closer Look: Painting Technique. London: National Gallery London Publications, 2012.

Kirsh, Andrea, and Rustin. R. Levenson. Seeing Through Paintings. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2002.

Joyce Hill Stoner and Rushfield, Rebecca, eds. The Conservation of Easel Paintings. Routledge: London and New York, 2012.

Thompson, Daniel V. The Materials and Techniques of Medieval Painting. New York: Dover, 1956.

van de Wetering, Ernst. Rembrandt: The Painter at Work. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 1997.

Wieseman, Marjorie E. A Closer Look: Deceptions and Discoveries. London: National Gallery London Publications, 2010.

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Related Links and Resources - Historic and Contemporary Art Materials

MITRA - Materials Information and Technical Resources for Artists - A free, interactive forum for artists that includes educational resources for those who are interested in learning about best practices as well as up-to-date scientific research on contemporary art materials and artistic techniques.

Kremer Pigments, Inc. - Kremer pigments is based in Germany but also has a store in New York City where they offer workshops and demonstrations.  A vast array of historic materials can be purchased from their catalogue.

Natural Pigments - Natural Pigments is an art supply company based in Willits, California that offers a unique selection of rare artists materials and supplies.  Their company also offers fresco and tempera painting workshops.

Windsor & Newton - The Windsor and Newton website offers comprehensive background information on art materials.

Golden Artist Colors, Inc. - The resources section of the Golden Artist Colors website contains up-to-date technical information regarding all of their products, waste disposal/health and safety information for artists, and a link to their "JUST PAINT" newsletter.

Egg Tempera Painters Forum - An artists forum dedicated solely to egg tempera techniques. Founded by the Society of Painter in Tempera.

CAMEO (Conservation and Art Materials Encyclopedia Online) - CAMEO is a wiki, hosted and run by the MFA Boston.  The wiki serves as a searchable database for hundreds of art materials used today and in the past.  Proprietary brand names can also be used to pull up relevant information regarding chemical composition, toxicity, and preservation.

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  • The Department of Art Conservation
  • 303 Old College
  • University of Delaware
  • Newark, DE 19716, USA
  • Phone: 302-831-3489