Hamilton Kerr Institute Bulletin Number 6

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Hamilton Kerr Institute Bulletin number 6, 2016

Hamilton Kerr Institute, Fitzwilliam Museum


Hamilton Kerr Institute Bulletin number 6, 2016

Hamilton Kerr Institute, Fitzwilliam Museum


Hamilton Kerr Institute Bulletin number 6, 2016 Editors: Lucy Wrapson and Christine Braybrook

Published 2016 by Archetype Publications Ltd in association with the Hamilton Kerr Institute, University of Cambridge Archetype Publications Ltd c/o International Academic Projects 1 Birdcage Walk London SW1H 9JJ www.archetype.co.uk © Hamilton Kerr Institute, University of Cambridge 2016 ISBN: 978-1-909492-45-5 British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library. The majority of the photographs, X-radiographs and infrared photographs in this publication are by Chris Titmus and are © Hamilton Kerr Institute, University of Cambridge, with additional photography by staff and students of the Hamilton Kerr Institute. Other copyright holders are acknowledged in illustration captions. Produced by The Hamilton Kerr Institute, University of Cambridge. Designed and typeset by PDQ Digital Media Solutions Ltd, Bungay Printed and bound in Great Britain by Latimer Trend Ltd, Plymouth Cover: Detail from Daniël Seghers, A Vase of Flowers, recto, c. 1650, oil on copper, 48 × 35 cm. The Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge © Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.


Contents Page 5 Preface 7 Thomas Gainsborough as a copyist Kristina Mandy 21 The Gainsborough’s House paint bladders: tin-based mordants and the attribution of artists’ materials Spike Bucklow And Kristina Mandy 29 Daniël Seghers, phoenix of flower-painters Sven Van Dorst 45 Judgement and speculation: an appraisal of the Middle Temple’s Judgement of Solomon Christine Braybrook 62 A note on the use of the purple pigment fluorite on The Man in Red Mary Kempski 66 All that is gold does not glitter: a technical, historical and iconographical study of the central panel of the Great Chamber fireplace, Charterhouse, London, and the figure of Rowland Buckett Carlos González Juste 83 ‘Titian’s Mistress’ at Apsley House and the painting beneath Sarah Bayliss, Alice Tate-Harte And Paul Joannides 93 A technical study of Sir Joshua Reynolds’ Portrait of Anne Liddell, Duchess of Grafton 1757–59 Pia Dowse 104 On the unorthodox origin and Byzantine journey of the Lavenham Madonna Christine Slottved Kimbriel And Paul Joannides 116

Forty years of student projects as waymarks on the professional path Sally Woodcock



Preface

The sixth volume of the Hamilton Kerr Institute Bulletin is published in an important anniversary year for both the Fitzwilliam Museum and the Institute, celebrating 200 and 40 years since their respective foundations. The Hamilton Kerr Institute is the paintings conservation department of the Fitzwilliam Museum and part of the department of the History of Art at the University of Cambridge. It is a training institution for students of easel paintings conservation and a destination for recent graduates of conservation programmes from around the world. The 2016 anniversary edition of the Bulletin contains the work of students, interns and staff members of the Institute, often in collaboration with external scholars and institutions. The articles gathered in this volume largely feature technical studies, including a newly discovered example of the use of fluorite on a sixteenth-century panel, adding to a growing body of knowledge surrounding this comparatively unusual pigment (Mary Kemspki, ‘A note on the use of the purple pigment fluorite on The Man in Red’). Two papers aim to reinvigorate the reputations of the once-famous seventeenth-century artists, Daniël Seghers (Sven van Dorst, ‘Daniël Seghers, phoenix of flower-painters’) and Rowland Buckett (Carlos González Juste, ‘All that is gold does not glitter: a technical, historical and iconographical study of the central panel of the Great Chamber fireplace, Charterhouse, London, and the figure of Rowland Buckett’). The discovery of an unfinished Seghers flower composition on the back of a painting from the Fitzwilliam Museum provides an exciting new insight into the production of flower pieces by this artist. Buckett is convincingly demonstrated to have been responsible for a prestigious decorative work of the early seventeenth century at London’s Charterhouse. The fading of Buckett’s reputation can be seen to have as much to do with twentieth- and twentyfirst-century attitudes towards the decorative versus fine arts as with the ravages of Nazi bombing. Institutional collaborations are also well represented with two articles resulting from work with Gainsborough’s House and its collections – one a study of paint bladders that may have once belonged to Gainsborough (Spike Bucklow and Kristina Mandy, ‘The Gainsborough’s House paint bladders: tin-based mordants and the attribution of artists’ materials’) and the other exploring the work of Gainsborough as a thoughtful copyist of Old Master paintings (Kristina Mandy, ‘Thomas Gainsborough as a copyist’). Gainsborough’s great rival, Sir Joshua Reynolds, is also featured, with a technical study of a portrait of Anne Liddell adding to a growing body of work published on his 1750s output (Pia Dowse, ‘A technical study of Sir Joshua Reynolds’ Portrait of Anne Liddell, Duchess of Grafton 1757–59’). One of the great Tudor paintings of the Inns of Court, The Judgement of Solomon belonging to the Middle Temple, is discussed in these pages (Christine Braybrook, ‘Judgement and speculation: an appraisal of the Middle Temple’s Judgement of Solomon’). This complex work was altered at an early date and those changes are carefully outlined, including the discovery of an original set of artist’s initials and identification of possible artists. An autograph features in another article: the discovery of Titian’s autograph and another Titian composition underneath the present painting are the key findings in ‘‘Titian’s Mistress’ at Apsley House and the painting beneath’ by Sarah Bayliss, Alice Tate-Harte and Paul Joannides, a partner piece to an article published in the previous Hamilton Kerr Institute Bulletin (Paul Joannides and Rupert Featherstone, ‘A painting by Titian from the Spanish Royal Collection at Apsley House, London’). Northern Italian painting is also represented in the article on a much-damaged painting of the Madonna and Child now in Lavenham in Suffolk (Christine Slottved Kimbriel and Paul Joannides, ‘On the unorthodox origin and Byzantine journey of the Lavenham Madonna’). In the absence of an autograph, two possible attributions are presented by the authors, one of whom favours Jacopo Bellini, the other Gentile da Fabriano. As this paper demonstrates, although technical and stylistic evidence may be brought together impartially, it does not always lead to the same conclusions.

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The 2016 Bulletin ends with an important article that draws together abstracts of all 91 student final year projects undertaken at the Hamilton Kerr over the past 40 years (Sally Woodcock, ‘Forty years of student projects as waymarks on the professional path’). All too often scholars are unaware of conservation records, which largely lie unpublished and therefore untapped. While so many interesting discoveries and developments in the methodology of our young field remain unpublished, both this paper and this Bulletin are steps in the right direction. Lucy Wrapson and Christine Braybrook


Thomas Gainsborough as a copyist KRISTINA MANDY Abstract An ongoing collaboration between Gainsborough’s House, Sudbury and the Hamilton Kerr Institute has allowed research into Thomas Gainsborough’s paintings in Gainsborough’s House collection. In 2014 and 2015 this collaboration permitted a closer look at two paintings Gainsborough produced after the work of other artists: his copy after Peter Paul Rubens’ Descent from the Cross and one of his cropped copies after Anthony van Dyck’s Lord John Stuart and his Brother, Lord Bernard Stuart. These two copies are examined in the context of Gainsborough’s collection of Old Master paintings and other copies he produced after seventeenth-century Dutch artists. Technical examination of the two works revealed what Gainsborough was copying from the original paintings. Comparison with his later artistic production explored the influence that the process of creating copies had on Gainsborough’s technique and paint application methods.

Copying in the eighteenth century Alongside the establishment of art academies in England in the eighteenth century a trend developed among emerging artists to create numerous copies after the work of the Old Masters. Many artists made copies on their Grand Tour of great European art collections; Sir Joshua Reynolds made just such a trip to Italy in 1750.1 Less-established artists often made copies for English aristocrats to take home as souvenirs, which supplemented their income from their own original paintings.2 Artists hung their copies in their picturehanging rooms alongside their own works and their collection of Old Master paintings in order to demonstrate their skill to potential clients.3 Portrait painting offered one of the greatest opportunities for social mobility in the eighteenth century and was therefore a highly competitive field with at least 111 portrait painters at work in London alone in the 1780s.4 By demonstrating their ability to accurately copy respected Old Master works, artists could display their ability to their prospective patrons and distinguish themselves from other portraitists. Importantly, copying was also a means of learning techniques from established and important artists, including the use of colour and the design of a composition. In a period when learning one’s artistic craft was becoming less reliant on a lengthy apprenticeship, artists came to depend more on their observations of Old Master works to hone their techniques.5 Thomas Gainsborough made at least 22 copies after the work of other artists. Unfortunately there are no records to indicate that Gainsborough ever put into writing his opinion on the act of copying, which is not unlikely for an artist who rarely wrote about the act of painting. In 1769 Reynolds recommended in his second discourse that when producing original works ‘Instead of copying the touches of those great masters, copy only their conceptions.’6 Gainsborough’s view was akin to that of Reynolds in that he used the work of Old

Master artists and his copies as inspiration for his later work. However Gainsborough also adapted the touches and techniques from Old Master paintings, learning more from the original work than just the composition or colouring. Gainsborough’s collection of paintings and his copies The contents of Gainsborough’s studio were sold in 1789 after his death,7 including what remained of his collection of artwork, although unfortunately the catalogue does not distinguish between drawings and paintings. Gainsborough owned 26 landscapes, 11 portraits and seven paintings of other subjects including animal studies and still life works. Landscapes made up the majority of Gainsborough’s collection, including works by Karel du Jardin, Giovanni Ghisolfi, Jan Griffier, Jean-Francois Millet, Frans Snyders, Jacob van Ruysdael, Willem van de Velde and Jan Wynants.8 Gainsborough’s attraction to landscape paintings stemmed from his childhood in the countryside around Sudbury, Suffolk, which contributed to a lifelong interest in creating his own landscape works. As he wrote to his friend William Jackson later in life: ‘I’m sick of Portraits and wish very much to take my Viol da Gamba and walk off to some sweet Village where I can paint Landskips and enjoy the fag End of Life in quietness and ease.’9 Gainsborough’s collection of 11 portraits includes works by Anthony van Dyck, Sir Peter Lely, Cornelius Janssen, Peter Paul Rubens, Diego Velázquez and Bartolomé Esteban Murillo.10 It is likely that this collection influenced Gainsborough’s own portrait style. Notably the sale list also included a group of 12 copies Gainsborough made after the works of Old Master artists consisting of copies of seven paintings by Van Dyck, two works after Murillo, and single copies after paintings by, or then attributed to, Rembrandt van Rijn, Velázquez and Titian, echoing

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Gainsborough’s version of Rubens’ Descent from the Cross (figure 2), which is examined in further detail below. Gainsborough also made copies that changed certain aspects of the painting. He made two copies after Teniers’ Return from the Shooting – one faithful version and another with changes.14 Both copies are from around 1773, when Gainsborough stayed at Longford Castle to paint portraits for the family and study Teniers’ works.15 The faithful copy was once located at the castle along with the original Teniers painting. The other version in the National Gallery in Dublin16 is quite close to the original with a few small alterations including replacing the dogs at the lower right with a log and changing the characterisation of the trees to give broader, leafy branches. Perhaps Gainsborough was creating a strict copy with one version, while exploring another direction in his other version, possibly what he himself would have done with such a composition. The fact that Gainsborough made two different copies after one work indicates that his process was about more than just strictly copying the composition. The importance of the copies to Gainsborough can also be explored through the materials that he used for their production. As described above, Gainsborough repeatedly made multiple copies after the same subject including three copies after Van Dyck’s double portrait Lord John Stuart and his Brother, Lord Bernard Stuart. The most faithful version, now at the Saint Louis Art Museum in the USA, is very close to the original in its dimensions.17 Rather than create smaller versions, Gainsborough’s copies often correlated with the size of the original work, which can be seen in the Saint Louis copy of the portrait of the Stuart brothers and Gainsborough’s versions of Return from the Shooting.18 This indicates that with the larger works there was a considerable expense involved in their production. After moving to Bath, Gainsborough started charging 60 guineas for a whole length, 40¾ guineas for a half-length and 20 guineas for a bust.19 A larger copy by Gainsborough, such as his version of Rubens’ Descent from the Cross, could have been sold for around 60 guineas when he produced it; smaller works such as a cropped copy of Lord Bernard Stuart would have cost around 20 guineas each. Additionally, the pigments used for these works, including high quality earth pigments and red lakes, were not inexpensive.20 By not selling these works but keeping them in his possession, Gainsborough was demonstrating the utility of these paintings to his practice over their monetary value during a critical period when he was still establishing himself as a portrait painter and forming his client base.

Figure 1. Thomas Gainsborough (after Rubens or Van Dyck), Two Monks Reading, eighteenth century, oil on canvas, 54 × 47 cm. Ashmolean Museum, Oxford. © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford.

the paintings in his Old Master collection.11 That these works were found in his studio after his death may suggest that Gainsborough kept them as references when making his own paintings. Waterhouse listed 10 additional copies made by Gainsborough not included in this sale, encompassing paintings after Aelbert Cuyp and Rubens, landscapes after Karel Dujardin and Michaud, four portraits after Van Dyck, and two copies after David Teniers the Elder.12 Gainsborough had the greatest opportunity to create copies after he moved to the cosmopolitan city of Bath in 1759, where wealthy and influential aristocrats and art patrons spent their summers. Through commissions and visits Gainsborough was granted access to country estates where he could admire the private collections of Old Master paintings and copy some of these works.13 Gainsborough also copied works in his own possession. The kinds of copies made by Gainsborough Gainsborough made different kinds of copies: some were brought to a higher finish and appeared complete whereas others were left sketchy and appeared unfinished. An example of a more complete copy is Gainsborough’s version of Two Monks’ Heads, a painting that historically has been attributed to either Rubens or Van Dyck and was at one point in Gainsborough’s possession, but has since been lost. Gainsborough’s copy at the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford, Two Monks Reading (figure 1), is a fully realised work with the focus drawn to the devotion of the figures. In comparison, an example of a less finished, sketch-like copy can be found in

The influence of Gainsborough’s copies on his artistic practice The important influence of the paintings that Gainsborough owned and copied can be seen in his practice throughout his artistic career. The majority

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Figure 2. Thomas Gainsborough (after Rubens), The Descent from the Cross, c.1759–67, oil on canvas, 126.4 × 102.3 cm. Gainsborough’s House, Sudbury.

of the collection of works that he owned, as indicated by the sale of his studio in 1789, were by seventeenthcentury Dutch artists, as were many of his copies. From 1749 to 1758, during his time in Sudbury and Ipswich before moving to Bath, Gainsborough produced works after paintings and drawings by Teniers and Antonie Waterloo, among others.21 Jacob van Ruysdael’s La Forêt has been identified as the source for Gainsborough’s drawing A Wooded Landscape with a River, Cattle and Figures from the 1740s.22 As Susan Foister stated, copying and imitating the work of earlier landscape artists was a ‘significant way for Gainsborough to establish an approach to landscape composition in England at a point when there was little native tradition to follow’.23 This approach included his introduction of landscapes into conversation pieces.24 The Dutch connection can also be seen in the works that Gainsborough put on display in his picture-hanging room. The displayed works most likely had a finished quality and were chosen to exhibit his

skill in close copying, similar to other picture-hanging rooms of the time. In a visit to Gainsborough’s Bath studio on 7 May 1770, Dorothy Richardson described the following works on display beside multiple landscapes by Gainsborough and a landscape by an unnamed artist: ‘a Miniature Copy of Vandykes famous Picture at Wilton of Ld Pembrokes Family; the Duke of Shomburgh in Miniature upon Horseback … & A Good Picture of two Old Heads by Rubens’.25 This particular set of paintings reveals another aspect of Gainsborough’s work in addition to his skill – the inspiration from, and influence of, Van Dyck and Rubens. Copying as much as could be closely observed from the artistic process and materials of an admired artist helped Gainsborough to develop his own artistic style and technique. Reynolds even identified this part of Gainsborough’s practice: He occasionally made copies from Rubens, Teniers, and Vandyck, which it would be no

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disgrace to the most accurate connoisseur to mistake, at first sight, for the works of those masters. What he thus learned he applied to the originals of nature, which he saw with his own eyes; and imitated, not in the manner of those masters, but in his own.26 Gainsborough’s process of absorbing more than just the composition from a work he copied can be explored in two paintings from Gainsborough’s House: a cropped copy after Van Dyck’s Lord John Stuart and his Brother, Lord Bernard Stuart and a version after Rubens’ Descent from the Cross. Gainsborough’s copy after The Descent from the Cross by Rubens Seeing Rubens’ modello for the central panel of his altarpiece The Descent from the Cross was the catalyst for Gainsborough to make his copy of the composition. Gainsborough probably saw the modello when he was commissioned to paint a portrait at Corsham Court near Bath as it was in Lord Lee’s collection in the mid-1700s (figure 3).27 The immediacy of Gainsborough’s version follows that of the modello and the dimensions are relatively similar.28 However the composition of the copy more closely follows Rubens’ final version of the altarpiece including changes Rubens made to the figure of St John in yellow at the bottom left, the figure at the top left holding the cloth, and the position of Mary’s head. Gainsborough most likely saw the altarpiece in the Cathedral of Our Lady on a visit to Antwerp in 1783, decades after making his copy.29 Therefore, although he was guided by his memories, and possibly sketches, of the modello from his visit to Corsham Court in making his version, Gainsborough must have relied on Lucas Vorsterman’s commissioned engraving of the altarpiece (figure 4) for the compositional details and orientation of his copy as a mirror image of the finished altarpiece and modello.30 Changing the orientation of his copy could also have been an intentional compositional choice as researched by Peter Moore in relation to Gainsborough’s printmaking technique.31 The copy was probably painted between 1759 and 1767 while Gainsborough was in Bath and before he painted another work influenced by the Rubens copy that is explored later in this article. Critically, in Gainsborough’s copy the full aesthetics of the Rubens modello are not carried through, but the build-up of paint layers is very similar to Rubens’ technique. Rubens was known to apply his priming layer with a stiff brush in zigzag movements, creating a distinctly stripy pattern left visible in more thinly painted paint passages.32 This can be seen on the modello in a brown hue, visible on the surface in Christ’s lower left leg and the white cloth underneath him (figure 5). Gainsborough created a similar effect through his application of the brown paint in the foreground and grey paint in

Figure 3. Peter Paul Rubens, The Descent from the Cross, 1611–13, oil on panel, 115.2 × 76.2 cm. The Courtauld Gallery, London. © The Samuel Courtauld Trust, The Courtauld Gallery, London.

Figure 4. Lucas Vorsterman (after Rubens), The Descent from the Cross 1615–75, engraving print on paper. Victoria and Albert Museum, London. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

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Figure 6. Detail of drawing and painted lines and drip marks in Gainsborough’s copy after Rubens (figure 2).

Figure 5. Detail of priming visible on the figure of Christ in Rubens’ modello (figure 3).

the background in a rough diagonal fashion, which is enhanced by the horizontal striations in the grey ground layer from application with a combing device.33 Although it is more common to find underdrawing in Rubens’ sketches than in his finished paintings,34 the modello for The Descent from the Cross does not show signs of a dry underdrawing. Rubens did, however, use a reddish-brown paint to copy his composition from a prepared drawing to the panel support.35 He often used brown or red lake paint to copy a sketch to the prepared ground of a modello or the final version of a composition, and these painted lines would frequently be left visible at the outlines of forms.36 Paint drips are also often found in Rubens’ paintings, indicating that he thinned his paints in order to work more quickly.37 Gainsborough initially sketched out the composition using a carbon-based dry drawing medium followed by a diluted brown paint to define contours (figure 6).38 The infrared reflectograph (IRR) shows that the dry drawing lines are loose and slightly uncertain, with multiple lines used to define one area. This suggests that Gainsborough transferred these compositional elements freehand from a source with different dimensions, probably from a much smaller print. The brown paint (an earth pigment, possibly umber) is more confident in execution, firmly establishing outlines that do not necessarily follow the drawn lines underneath.39 The paint has beaded up in some areas, characteristic of very diluted oil paint. The presence of paint drips at the left side also supports the use of thinned paint and speed in the painting process, similar to Rubens. Gainsborough’s

Figure 7. Detail of a secondary figure and Nicodemus in Rubens’ modello (figure 3).

general use of diluted paint was confirmed by his daughter Margaret’s recollection: ‘his colours were very liquid and if he did not hold the palette right would run over’.40 Rubens’ next step would often be to apply a dead colouring with a paler, less saturated palette to lay in the figures and general colours of the composition.41 In unfinished works it is clear that the artist concentrated on the main parts of the composition in the initial stages of the painting process, leaving secondary figures and objects in the shadows in a brown dead colour.42 This aspect can be seen in the modello for The Descent from the Cross where Rubens worked up the central figures and kept his

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identified in the flesh areas: lead white, yellow ochre, vermilion, red lake, sometimes azurite and carbon black.45 The following pigments were identified in the shadow on the flesh of Christ’s knee in Gainsborough’s copy: lead white, earth pigments, possibly red lake, vermilion and probably carbon black.46 This kind of pigment mixture for flesh areas, including the presence of blue pigments, can be found in even earlier works by Gainsborough, which demonstrates a firm knowledge of colour interactions that allowed him to create a similar effect to that of Rubens.47 Multicoloured mixtures of pigments have also been found in areas where simpler mixtures were expected. For example in Nicodemus’ hair and grey hat, visual identification with a microscope showed the presence of white, black, blue, red and yellow pigment particles. All stages of the artistic process of creation are left visible and on display in Gainsborough’s copy of The Descent from the Cross. The dry drawing lines and brown painted lines defining the forms are made prominent, the bright washes added to the secondary figures distinguish their forms and give a colourful harmony to the painting, and the central area of the composition is worked up to a high degree, demonstrating the quality of Gainsborough’s painting technique. This was not a painting that the artist planned to work up further but a copy left intentionally in this state. In contrast, in the 1740s and 50s Gainsborough’s typical technique of working up a painting usually began with the composition ‘conceived as a complex series of coloured tones all applied separately to describe the form’.48 In the unfinished work The Painter’s Daughters with a Cat from 1760–61, Gainsborough used differently coloured, painted lines to indicate drapery folds and the contours of the cloth, providing colour as well as form in the first stage of the painting. Even in Gainsborough’s self portrait from 1754 at Houghton Hall in Norfolk, the diluted brown painted lines are far more descriptive of the tone and form of the figure’s costume, acting almost as a grisaille in brown rather than the more two-dimensional outlines in The Descent from the Cross copy – the different painting process used in the copy shows that Gainsborough deviated from his normal technique to produce this work. The influence of this copy on Gainsborough’s compositions can be seen in later works. John Hayes argued that The Descent from the Cross influenced the composition of both versions of The Harvest Wagon.49 The arrangement of the figures into a similar pyramidal shape on and around the wagon is very reminiscent of the interconnected figures in The Descent from the Cross. The first version of The Harvest Wagon dates to 1767, most likely very soon after Gainsborough created his copy of the Rubens painting. Amal Asfour and Paul Williamson have also explored the possible religious meanings in this secular composition, further connecting it to the Rubens original.50 Perhaps Gainsborough chose

Figure 8. Detail of Nicodemus in Gainsborough’s copy after Rubens (figure 2).

technique cursory for the two figures at the top, the faces of the two female figures at bottom left, and the foreground area (figure 7). It is at this stage that Gainsborough followed a different technique, choosing to add colour to most of the figures as a translucent wash with minimal indications of shadow or highlight. This efficiently defined the colour and form of a figure without requiring the addition of more paint or further definition. The quick application was enhanced by the use of a coarse hog-hair brush, which led to more visible brushstrokes.43 Similarly to Rubens, the central area of the composition was worked up further showing smaller and more detailed brushstrokes and a wet-in-wet application of the paint, with brighter highlights added on top. Gainsborough may have been copying the fact that this area was the most finished in the Rubens modello, or perhaps it was the area that he most admired in the painting and wished to emulate Rubens’ technique more closely. Rubens was known for his economic use of paint44 as can be seen in the brown priming layer, which also added a warm tone around the figure of Christ and contributed much of the flesh colour for many of the secondary figures. Gainsborough used his grey wash and ground layers to similar effect to create the flesh tones of most of the secondary figures in the painting, including in the more worked-up area of Nicodemus’ face (figure 8). Additionally both the drawing and painted lines are visible on the surface and are involved in the creation of the figure’s beard. There is also a similarity in the paint mixtures used by the two artists for the flesh tones. In the Rubens modello the following pigments were

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to honour Rubens’ composition by citing it and adapting it for his own composition. Gainsborough’s copy Lord Bernard Stuart after Van Dyck’s original Gainsborough created three versions of Anthony van Dyck’s double portrait Lord John Stuart and his Brother, Lord Bernard Stuart from 1638 (figure 9): a full-scale copy faithful to the original now at the Saint Louis Art Museum, and two smaller studies of the younger brother, one in a private collection and the other in Gainsborough’s House collection (figure 10).51 Gainsborough would have had an opportunity to see the Van Dyck painting in Cobham, Kent, around 1765, when he was commissioned to paint a portrait of the Earl of Darnley’s granddaughter, the Countess of Clanwilliam.52 This probably dates the Gainsborough’s House copy from 1765 to the early 1770s, when its influence can be seen in other Gainsborough portraits described below. It is possible that all three works were painted while Gainsborough was staying at Cobham, however it is also plausible that the copies were not made in the presence of the original. It has been recorded that Gainsborough could create a copy from memory; his copy of Van Dyck’s The Pembroke Family is noted in the sale of his works after his death as ‘painted from Memory, after having seen the Original at Wilton’.53 Either way, Gainsborough would certainly have had enough time to examine Van Dyck’s original while at Cobham to create his three copies. The materials and techniques that Gainsborough used in his copy generally correspond to those used by Van Dyck in his original. The ground layer on Lord Bernard Stuart is light brown in colour and it appears that Gainsborough applied this priming himself, as similar translucent particles appear in the ground layer as in the paint layers.54 Gainsborough also added a brown wash layer on top of the priming that varies in density across the painting. The ground layer is comparable to that of the original Van Dyck painting where the artist used a biscuit-coloured ground, typical of the portraits he painted in England.55 Gainsborough next outlined the features of his composition with a translucent dark brown paint, as seen around the fingers of the sitter’s proper right hand. The paint appears to have been diluted to increase its transparency and the ease with which it could be applied, much like the dilute brown paint used for a similar purpose in his Descent from the Cross copy. This step also follows Van Dyck’s technique used to outline his forms with thin dark paint lines, visible on the surface at the back edge of Bernard Stuart’s collar and the edge of his chin.56 Van Dyck next worked up the rest of the painting to incorporate or cover these lines, whereas Gainsborough’s version is less worked up so that the painted lines are more noticeable and essential in delineating the forms.

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Figure 9. Anthony van Dyck, Lord John Stuart and his Brother, Lord Bernard Stuart, 1638, oil on canvas, 237.5 × 146.1 cm. National Gallery, London. © The National Gallery, London.

Figure 10. Thomas Gainsborough (after Van Dyck), Lord Bernard Stuart, c.1765–75, oil on canvas, 68.6 × 58.4 cm. Gainsborough’s House, Sudbury.


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Figure 11. Detail of the lace collar in Van Dyck’s Lord John Stuart and his Brother, Lord Bernard Stuart (figure 9).

Figure 12. Detail of the lace collar in Gainsborough’s copy after Van Dyck (figure 10).

Both artists used the ground layer or underlayers to work up different areas of the composition. In Van Dyck’s original, the biscuit-coloured ground helped to create the highlights in Bernard Stuart’s hair; similarly in Gainsborough’s copy, the combination of the ground layer and successive brown wash layer contributed to the mid-tone colour in the figure’s hair. Van Dyck’s efficient use of paint included the application of a cool grey colour to act as a mid-tone for the silver costume of the figure, with shadows reinforced with darker grey or black lines and white highlights worked wet-in-wet into the grey paint or added after the layer underneath had dried. Gainsborough also used a simple layer structure of monochrome colours with medium and dark grey tones to establish the forms of the costume followed by highlights with white, slightly impastoed paint and shadows with darker, diluted paint. Unlike Van Dyck, however, Gainsborough left gaps in the grey areas of the costume, exposing the warm, darker brown wash layer underneath to act as a mid-tone or shadow. This evidences an efficient use of paint but appears slightly discordant with the cooler colours used to depict the costume. A similar technique and effect can be seen in an earlier, unfinished Gainsborough painting from around 1756, The Painter’s Daughters Chasing a Butterfly, where a warm underlayer contributed to the mid-tone of Margaret’s blue and white dress. Additionally Gainsborough used a different technique than Van Dyck for the lace collar. Van Dyck again used a base grey colour overall followed by shadows and contours in a darker grey paint to distinguish the lighter areas as the lace decoration (figure 11). Gainsborough simplified this process by using the brown ground colour as the base with light grey or white paint for the decoration (figure 12). In Gainsborough’s version the details of the lace are more distinct and noticeable, in keeping with his later economic technique of drawing attention to important, bright highlights or details rather than fully working up an entire area of a painting. The differences in technique for the costume indicate

that Gainsborough was not trying to create an exact copy of the Van Dyck figure, but a simplified and slightly abstracted interpretation of the costume that would still appear realistic. Anthony van Dyck had a generally formulaic style for flesh paint in his later works involving localised, coloured underpainting to serve as a mid-tone and influence the paint layers above.57 This is identified in Lady Elizabeth Thimbelby and Dorothy, Viscountess Andover from 1638 in which Van Dyck created the flesh tones using lead white with small quantities of red earth, vermilion, golden ochre, Cassel brown earth, black pigment and ultramarine for the cool shadow tones.58 The blue shadow under Bernard Stuart’s lips may have been created using a blue or black pigment or by the turbid medium effect of pale flesh colours painted over a darker modelling layer or underdrawing. The pigment mixtures identified in Lord Bernard Stuart for the flesh tones include lead white, vermilion, an aluminium-based red lake, yellow earth pigments, a blue and a black pigment,59 similar to the mixtures of pigments that Gainsborough typically used for flesh tones. For both the 1744 paintings Portrait of William MacKinnon and Portrait of a Girl, the flesh paint comprised a mixture of colours including lead white, red, yellow and brown earth pigments, possibly vermilion, a blue and a black pigment.60 For the flesh in his portrait of Dr Ralph Schomberg from 1770, Gainsborough employed lead white tinted with earth colours, perhaps vermilion, and black in the shadows.61 Therefore the flesh paint mixtures used in Lord Bernard Stuart reflect Gainsborough’s technique used throughout his career rather than simply an attempt to copy Van Dyck’s. Overall in areas where Van Dyck’s preparatory layers are visible to a close observer, such as the colour and visibility of the ground or use of a painted underdrawing, Gainsborough used similar techniques, one exception being that he did not follow Van Dyck’s application of a grey mid-tone layer for the costume. In areas where the materials that Van Dyck used were not as clear, Gainsborough

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used his materials to create a similar effect, but in a way that did not necessarily correspond with Van Dyck’s technique. This can be seen in the painting of the blue cloth draped over Bernard Stuart’s proper right shoulder: for this area Van Dyck’s layer structure consisted of a ground layer followed by a base blue colour of indigo mixed with white pigment and topped with a blue layer of azurite and indigo mixed together.62 Van Dyck painted the blue cloth area separately from the rest of the costume, without the grey mid-tone layer for the costume running under the blue cloth. Gainsborough’s layer structure in this area consists of the ground layer followed by a grey paint layer topped with a blue layer of mostly Prussian blue with some yellow and red earth particles (figure 13): either he worked up the entire costume with grey tones first and then added the blue paint for the cloth, or he added the grey layer underneath the blue cloth as a toning layer, independent of his working up of the rest of the costume. A sample from the blue drapery of Portrait of a Girl exhibited a similar mixture of red pigments, Prussian blue and lead white to create the blue colour, indicating that adding other colours into blue mixtures was not unusual in Gainsborough’s practice.63 The fact that he made three versions after Van Dyck’s original shows a strong interest in the painting, especially the figure of the younger brother. The differences between the copies suggest that his purpose was not to create a more exact likeness but perhaps to explore how to depict the figure in a way that shared similarities with Van Dyck’s style and technique, especially the fluidity of Van Dyck’s brush, while still retaining his own style. Gainsborough produced at least 11 copies after Van Dyck’s work, the highest number of known copies by Gainsborough after a single artist’s work. In addition to making copies, Gainsborough owned a reproduction of Iconography, a collection of etchings and engravings of Van Dyck portraits produced around 1630, demonstrating the depth of his interest in the latter’s work.64 Portraits depicting sitters in Van Dyck dress were quite popular in the second half of the eighteenth century and Van Dyck was held up as a standard of excellence against which contemporary painters could be judged.65 Gainsborough did copy some aspects of Van Dyck’s paintings in his work, but usually adapted his references so that they were reminiscent of Van Dyck but still retained his individual manner. References to Van Dyck’s works – such as poses, details of a costume or a feature of a setting – can be seen in many of Gainsborough’s Bath period works, including Viscountess Tracy from c.1763 and Blue Boy from c.1770. Additionally the juxtaposition of the blue and yellow dresses of The Linley Sisters echoes the costumes of the Stuart brothers in the Van Dyck double portrait.66 The number and variety of references to Van Dyck’s work shows that Gainsborough was a learned painter with a

Figure 13. Cross-section from the blue cloth draped over the figure’s shoulder in Lord Bernard Stuart (figure 13), photographed at 200 × magnification. The layer structure is as follows: a: ground layer application containing lead white, yellow earth and black pigments; b: grey paint layer composed of a black pigment, possibly red earth and lead white; c: a blue paint layer containing Prussian blue, yellow and red earth particles.

deep understanding of Old Master portraiture.67 Gainsborough’s ability to paint his costumes with such movement and sensitivity may also have been influenced by his background; with his family in the wool trade and his sister a milliner, Gainsborough’s eye would have been ‘trained to notice the materiality of stuffs’.68 The technical influences of Rubens and Van Dyck After the mid-1750s, during the 1760s and later in particular, Gainsborough’s paintings showed more movement in the brushstrokes and a focus on the play of materials on the surface of a painting. This fleeting and indistinct handling of paint balanced with areas of sharp focus led many contemporary viewers of Gainsborough’s portraits to remark on their lifelikeness and liveliness.69 The attention on the materiality of the painting and what could be achieved through the manipulation of paint, whether by diluting or building up, is a commonality between Gainsborough and Rubens. John Hayes noted the particular influence that Rubens had on Gainsborough’s landscape and pastoral scenes, which increased in number in the 1760s and 1770s.70 The style and palette that Gainsborough used in these works changed from an influence by Ruysdael to that of Rubens, with the elements in a work more broadly and roughly handled, the composition more unified, and the brushwork more vigorous and rich.71 The beginnings of this shift can be seen in The Descent from the Cross, where the brushwork is more dynamic and energetically applied and the focus of the composition is brought to the central area through the detail and paint application. A similar energy can be seen in the brushstrokes of Gainsborough’s portraits from the 1760s to the 1780s, including the background and sweep of

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Figure 14. Thomas Gainsborough, Gainsborough Dupont, c.1775, watercolour and chalk, varnished, 17.1 × 14.3 cm. Victoria and Albert Museum, London. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

Figure 15. Thomas Gainsborough, Gainsborough Dupont, c.1770–75, oil on canvas, 44.5 × 36.2 cm. Tate, London. © Tate, London 2016.

the dress in Penelope, Viscountess Ligonier from c.1771, the rough and stormy background of An Officer of the 4th Regiment of Foot from c.1776–80, and overall in Miss Catherine Tatton from 1786.

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The paint application had the effect of creating movement in the portraits and the direct gaze and position of the figures imparted an intimacy to the works. The colours used in The Descent from the Cross copy, including bright yellow, red and blue, were bolder than Gainsborough’s colour choices in previous compositions, and he continued to use such colours to add force to his later landscapes and fancy pictures, such as The Cottage Girl from 1785.72 The influence on colour choices can also be seen in the flesh tones used by both artists. Rubens used a striking red colour to outline certain facial features and other flesh areas for his figures. This is particularly effective and efficient in his use of red pigment to both outline Christ’s arms and indicate the dripping blood in The Descent from the Cross modello. Gainsborough also used a strong red colour, most likely vermilion, to define the nose and ear of the figure of Nicodemus in his copy (figure 8).73 This incongruous, bright red colour for facial features is not found in Gainsborough’s earlier works but he adapted and used this technique in his later paintings. The use of red tones in flesh paint can also be seen as an influence from Van Dyck where Gainsborough followed Van Dyck’s use of reddish-brown paint to reinforce lines and shadows on the hands and faces of figures. A similar warm colour can be found in earlier Gainsborough portraits, including Lambe Barry and Caroline, Mrs Nathaniel Acton from the late 1750s, but these shadows were more muted and naturalistic in colour. In the case of Lord Bernard Stuart, however, Gainsborough used a brighter, pinker red tone very close to the colour used on Van Dyck’s painting around Bernard Stuart’s facial features and the edge of his proper right hand. This is carried through to later paintings by Gainsborough, including Shepherd Boys with Dogs Fighting, c.1783, Blue Boy, c.1770, Mrs Siddons, c.1785, and the study (figure 14) and painting (figure 15) of Gainsborough Dupont, both from the early 1770s. The study makes this juxtaposition especially powerful through the use of white for the sitter’s face and a scarlet red colour for the shadows in the flesh tones. The painting Gainsborough Dupont shares a number of features with Lord Bernard Stuart. It echoes the Stuart copy in the sitter’s three-quarter view profile, his gaze, the curly dark hair, and the lace collar as well as the plain background behind the figure. However the portrait of Dupont demonstrates Gainsborough in his element, fully embracing his individual style of painting including visible brushstrokes and a minimal application of paint that still managed to define forms in a clear way. The depiction of Dupont’s face shows Gainsborough’s later hatched technique more distinctly, with the facial features suggested rather than clearly defined. This painting, to a greater degree than the copy of Lord Bernard Stuart, shows Gainsborough adapting the style and subject matter of a Van Dyck portrait to his own manner.


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Conclusion The portrait of Gainsborough Dupont and Gainsborough’s paintings from the 1760s on demonstrate a mastery of technique and an artist confident in his execution. His paintings display a minimal and efficient paint application, bold brushstrokes and a confident, more assured technique, due in part to his growing practice and increasing status as an important artist in the 1760s. A significant factor in the development of this style and confident technique was Gainsborough’s exposure to and use of paintings by respected seventeenth-century artists, especially Rubens and Van Dyck. Gainsborough made a range of copies after the works of Old Master artists, from more faithful versions to adaptations that changed compositional characteristics or the style and manner of the subject matter, the copies themselves evidencing how the artist was learning from the process of making them. Other artists mainly employed Old Master paintings for their compositional characteristics using costumes, backgrounds or tropes in their own works to make reference to a venerated work. Reynolds, for example, borrowed poses from Van Dyck in his portraits including Suzanna Beckford from 1756 and Anne Bonfoy painted after 1754.74 Reynolds’ experimentations with media and paint application, well known for their sometimes damaging effects on his paintings, were done with the aim of quickly achieving the appearance of Old Master paintings rather than ‘the careful emulation of their methods’.75 Gainsborough’s intention came from a different direction, carefully creating his copies and following the techniques of the Old Master paintings to achieve similar effects. In making his copies Gainsborough was demonstrating the influence that these artists and their work had on his artistic output, especially the paintings and drawings of seventeenth-century Dutch artists. By creating copies with similar dimensions to the original works and using expensive pigments, Gainsborough indicated that they were worth more to him than the materials involved in their creation. He kept his copies in his studio, perhaps next to his collection of Old Master works, as visual reminders of what he admired in the works of other artists. The influence of the copying process can be seen in the way that Gainsborough later incorporated aspects of these paintings into his own work. Compositional links have been made previously between his copies and his later work, as identified previously. However there are also important technical links between the work of Rubens and Van Dyck and Gainsborough’s paintings from the 1760s, including the economic use of underlayers to create a visual impact on the final image, the focus on the materiality of the paint and ‘roughness’ of the paint surface, the application of red or reddishbrown paint around faces and flesh areas, and the increased use of brighter and bolder colours.76

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Gainsborough carefully created his copies to achieve similar effects to the original paintings but in his own individual style. This can be seen in the way in which Gainsborough’s copies of The Descent from the Cross and Lord Bernard Stuart follow the compositions and many of the techniques of their Old Master originals, but are still without question paintings by Thomas Gainsborough. His portraits were so effective because they invoked the viewer’s memory of the figure and his/her imagination, and his copies were successful because they reminded the viewer of the original painting while providing a different interpretation of that work. Technical examination of additional copies by Gainsborough after Rubens and Van Dyck would help to better define the influence of these Old Masters on Gainsborough’s work. Further examination of other copies by Gainsborough, such as those after Murillo and Velázquez, could reveal different ways in which Gainsborough incorporated aspects from the original paintings into his technique and artistic process and explore his relationship with respected seventeenth-century Spanish artists. Acknowledgements

I am very grateful to Gainsborough’s House, especially Director Mark Bills and former museum assistant Julia Smith, for their assistance with my research and for funding the technical analysis of the Gainsborough’s House copies. I would like to thank my supervisor Spike Bucklow for his invaluable guidance and help throughout this project and for conducting the SEM-EDX analysis on samples from both paintings. I would also like to express my gratitude to Lucy Wrapson for her vital support with this article and the XRF analysis conducted on both copies. Chris Titmus was crucial in obtaining images, infrared reflectographs and X-radiographs of the paintings. I am indebted to Rica Jones for her advice and support throughout my research. Special thanks also to Pia Dowse for her help with this article.

Notes

1. D. Mannings, Sir Joshua Reynolds: A Complete Catalogue of his Paintings, London 2000, p. 583. 2. M.K. Talley, ‘“All good pictures crack”: Sir Joshua Reynolds’s practice and studio’, in N. Penny (ed.), Reynolds, New York 1986, p. 56. 3. S.L. Sloman, ‘Artists’ picture rooms in eighteenthcentury Bath’, Bath History, vol. VI, 1996, p. 132; H. Belsey, ‘A visit to the studios of Gainsborough and Hoare’, The Burlington Magazine, vol. 129, no. 1007, 1987, p. 107. 4. M. Pointon, ‘Portrait painting as a business enterprise in London in the 1780s’, Art History, vol. 7, no. 2, 1984, pp. 187, 190. 5. See R. Jones, ‘Introduction’, in S. Hackney, R. Jones and J. Townsend (eds), Paint and Purpose: A Study of Technique in British Art, London 1999, for a discussion on the transition of fine art from a skilled craft to an intellectual pursuit, with a decrease in the focus on teaching the practical aspects of painting. 6. Sir J. Reynolds, ‘Discourse Two’, Discourses on Art, London 1966, p. 32.


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7. The original sale catalogue has been described and reprinted in full in Editorial, ‘Gainsborough’s collection of paintings’, The Burlington Magazine, vol. 84, no. 494, 1944, pp. 106–10. 8. Editorial 1944 (note 7), pp. 107–10. 9. T. Gainsborough, ‘56. To Mr. William Jackson’, in M. Woodall (ed.), The Letters of Thomas Gainsborough, London 1961, p. 115. 10. Editorial 1944 (note 7), pp. 107–10; see also W.T. Whitley, Thomas Gainsborough, London 1915, p. 322. 11. Editorial 1944 (note 7), pp. 107–10. 12. E. Waterhouse, Gainsborough, London 1966, pp. 124–25. 13. D. Cherry and J. Harris, ‘Eighteenth century portraiture and the seventeenth century past: Gainsborough and Van Dyck’, Art History, vol. V, no. 3, 1982, p. 289. 14. ‘Recent additions to the Dublin Gallery-II’, The Burlington Magazine, vol. 33, no. 188, 1918, pp. 179–83. 15. National Gallery, ‘Collecting and displaying art: Longford Castle and the National Gallery’, http:// www.nationalgallery.org.uk/paintings/learnabout-art/longford-castle-and-the-national-gallery (accessed January 2015). 16. Waterhouse 1966 (note 12), p. 125. The Teniers painting is still located at Longford Castle but the more faithful Gainsborough copy is no longer in the castle’s collection. 17. The Van Dyck original measures 237.5 × 146.1 cm; National Gallery, http://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/ paintings/anthony-van-dyck-lord-john-stuart-andhis-brother-lord-bernard-stuart/*/key-facts (accessed January 2015). The Saint Louis copy measures 235 × 146.1 cm; Saint Louis Art Museum, http://slam. org:8080/emuseum/view/objects/asitem/search@/0/ titleasc?t:state:flow=cb4d2f32-db7d-4dcf-a609-d0b8d369e6b0 (accessed January 2015). 18. The size of the Teniers painting is 114.3 × 153.7 cm; Alexandra Ormerod, Longford Castle, personal correspondence (February 2016). The Gainsborough copy that was once at Longford Castle measures 116.9 × 152.2 cm; Artnet, http://www.artnet.com/artists/ thomas-gainsborough/the-return-from-shootingafter-teniers-skYxque0l5o7h93HJzTZbg2 (accessed February 2016). The Gainsborough copy with changes measures 117 × 151 cm; National Gallery of Ireland, http://onlinecollection.nationalgallery.ie/ view/objects/asitem/search@/4/sortNumber-asc?t:st ate:flow=f087f95e-3df8-41b2-8b20-ce8c7cb368d7 (accessed February 2016). Both copies are very similar in size to the original Teniers work. 19. D. Mannings, ‘Notes on some eighteenth-century portrait prices in Britain’, British Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies, vol. 6, no. 2, 1983, pp. 190–91. This increased to 160 guineas for a whole length, 80 guineas for a three-quarter length, and 40 for a bust by 1787 (op. cit., p. 192). 20. X-ray fluorescence (XRF) detected peaks for aluminium (Al) in red glazes indicating aluminium-based red lake pigments were used in Gainsborough’s Lord Bernard Stuart, a copy after Van Dyck in Gainsborough’s House collection. The earth particles identified under polarised light microscopy (PLM) from both Lord Bernard Stuart and Gainsborough’s copy of The Descent from the Cross were finely ground, consistent and intense in colour, indicating their good quality. The presence of red and yellow

aluminium-based lake pigments used for the robes of figures in The Descent from the Cross copy were indicated by the appearance of particles under PLM and analysis of samples using scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive X-ray (SEM/EDX) analysis. 21. S. Foister, ‘Young Gainsborough and the English taste for Dutch landscape’, Apollo, vol. 146, no. 426, 1997, p. 8. 22. M. Woodall, ‘A note on Gainsborough and Ruisdael’, The Burlington Magazine, vol. 66, no. 382, 1935, p. 45. There is no record of Gainsborough having travelled out of the country during the 1740s and the Ruysdael work is not recorded as being in England at that time. However in Fulcher’s biography of Gainsborough he notes that Gainsborough’s father, who was in the cloth trade, occasionally travelled to France and Holland and Woodall speculates whether he ever took his son on such an expedition, which could hint at further trips abroad for the young artist. 23. Foister 1997 (note 21), pp. 8–9. 24. Foister 1997 (note 21), pp. 8–9. 25. D. Richardson notes in a copy of The New Bath Guide published in 1770 by Christopher Anstey, printed in full by Belsey 1987 (note 3), pp. 108–9. The last work listed may refer to the painting Two Monks’ Heads described earlier. 26. Sir J. Reynolds, ‘Discourse Fourteen’, Discourses on Art, London 1966, pp. 222–23. 27. Waterhouse 1966 (note 12), p. 125. 28. The Gainsborough copy currently measures 126.4 × 102.3 cm. The Rubens modello measures 115.2 × 76.2 cm, The Courtauld Gallery, http://www. artandarchitecture.org.uk/images/gallery/4c199f73. html (accessed January 2015). Over time the composition and dimensions of Gainsborough’s copy have been altered from those initially determined by Gainsborough. The painting was lined in the past and the tacking margins that were originally on the sides and back of the stretcher have been brought to the front, expanding the edges of the painting on the left and right by about 3 cm and the top by 5 cm. This has created more space in the composition at the sides and top, making the composition look compressed. The original dimensions of Gainsborough’s copy would have been closer to 121.4 × 99.3 cm, more similar in size to the modello dimensions. 29. A. Asfour, P. Williamson and G. Jackson, ‘A second sentimental journey: Gainsborough abroad’, Apollo, vol. 146, no. 426, 1997, pp. 27–30. 30. Waterhouse (1966 (note 12), p. 125) stated that the Gainsborough copy is ‘in reverse from the original in Antwerp Cathedral: perhaps made from the version in Lord Lee’s collection, which was then at Corsham’. The exhibition Rubens and his Legacy: Van Dyck to Cezanne claimed that Gainsborough knew of the sketch at Corsham Court but was following Vorsterman’s print; Royal Academy of Arts, large print labels, p. 14, https://royal-academy-production-asset. s3.amazonaws.com/uploads/f35ae04f-679d-441eab73-e670da55245d/RubensLPGmerged.pdf (accessed July 2015). After determining the combination of origins for Gainsborough’s copy described above, another source was identified that also suggested this combination: A. Asfour and P. Williamson, Gainsborough’s Vision, Liverpool 1999, p. 96. 31. P. Moore, unpublished research presented at The Painting Rooms: The Artist’s Studio in Eighteenth Century Britain Conference, Sotheby’s Institute of

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Art, London, and Gainsborough’s House Sudbury, 29 and 30 October 2015. 32. N. Van Hout and A. Balis, Rubens Unveiled: Notes on the Master’s Painting Technique, Antwerp 2012, pp. 43, 45. 33. Rica Jones discusses this technique on small-scale paintings in ‘Gainsborough’s materials and methods: a “remarkable ability to make paint sparkle”’, in, S. Foister, R. Jones and O. Meslay (eds), Young Gainsborough, London 1997, p. 21. 34. S. Farnell and N. Van Hout, ‘The Prodigal Son by Peter Paul Rubens – III. Painting technique and restoration’, Rubens Bulletin, no. 1, Koninklijk Museum Voor Schone Kunsten, Antwerp 2007, p. 4. 35. N. Tasker, ‘The oil sketches for The Descent from the Cross by Peter Paul Rubens: an investigation of materials and techniques’, Courtauld Institute of Art, unpublished third year project, 1987, pp. 35–38. 36. Van Hout and Balis 2012 (note 32), p. 62. 37. Van Hout and Balis 2012 (note 32), p. 56. 38. The carbon-based nature of the dry drawing medium was suggested by its appearance in the infrared reflectograph and further confirmed in XRF analysis, where the lack of a phosphorous (P) peak, which would indicate bone black, indicated that the material used was most likely charcoal black. 39. The presence of peaks for manganese (Mn) in XRF spectra taken of the brown painted lines indicated the presence of umber in particular, and peaks for iron (Fe) and calcium (Ca) suggested the presence of earth pigments. 40. J. Hayes, Thomas Gainsborough, London 1980, p. 39. Originally recounted by Mr. Trimmer and quoted in W. Thornbury, The Life of J.M.W. Turner, R.A.: Founded on Letters and Papers Furnished by his Friends and Fellow Academicians, vol. II, London 1862, p. 62. 41. Van Hout and Balis 2012 (note 32), p. 62. 42. Van Hout and Balis 2012 (note 32), p. 71. 43. A small fragment of hair from such a brush was identified in a dispersion sample for PLM from the bright red paint used in the leftmost figure in The Descent from the Cross copy. 44. Van Hout and Balis 2012 (note 32), p. 14. 45. Tasker 1987 (note 35), p. 32. 46. These pigments were suggested by the presence of peaks for the following pigments in XRF analysis: lead (Pb) to indicate lead white; calcium (Ca), iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), nickel (Ni), and zinc (Zn) to indicate earth pigments; potassium (K) indicating a possible presence for red lake; and mercury (Hg) to indicate vermilion. 47. This includes the Portrait of William MacKinnon from c.1744 and the Portrait of a Girl from c.1744, and was confirmed with visual analysis of paint cross-sections from these paintings at the Hamilton Kerr Institute. Both paintings are fragments from a larger double portrait that can now be found at Gainsborough’s House. 48. Jones 1997 (note 33), p. 21. 49. J. Hayes, ‘Gainsborough and Rubens’, Apollo, vol. 78, no. 18, 1963, p. 92; J. Hayes, The Landscape Paintings of Thomas Gainsborough, vol. I, London 1982, p. 107. 50. Asfour and Williamson 1999 (note 30), pp. 253–55. 51. See note 17. The cropped copy in Gainsborough’s House collection measures 68.6 × 58.4 cm; the measurements of the other cropped copy are unknown. The latter is described in Lord Bernard

Stuart (1622–1645) 1750s, Historical Portraits Picture Archive, http://www.historicalportraits.com/ Gallery.asp?Page=Item&ItemID=155&Desc=LordBernard-Stuart-|-Thomas-Gainsborough (accessed January 2015). 52. H. Belsey, ‘We are all going to Heaven – and Vandyck is of the company!,’ Lowell Libson Ltd. British Art catalogue, London 2012, p. 28. 53. Editorial 1944 (note 7), p. 109. Woodall noted that Gainsborough must often have visited Wilton and Gainsborough wrote to James Unwin about a week he spent at Wilton ‘partly for my amusement, and partly to make a Drawing from a fine Horse of Ld. Pembroke’s’; T. Gainsborough, ‘Letter to James Unwin, Esq., at Baddow, Near Chelmsford, Essex’, Woodall 1961 (note 9), pp. 155–56, 162. 54. Similarly sized and coloured translucent particles were identified in both the ground and paint layers in a sample from the brown background of Lord Bernard Stuart, indicating that Gainsborough probably applied both layers. Rica Jones discusses the important effect of these translucent particles in Gainsborough’s paint in Jones 1997 (note 33), pp. 22–24. 55. A. Roy, ‘The National Gallery Van Dycks: technique and development’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin: Paintings in Antwerp and London-Rubens and Van Dyck, vol. 20, London 1999, p. 21. Van Dyck used a similar upper ground layer for Lady Elizabeth Thimbelby and Dorothy, Viscountess Andover from 1637 and the Equestrian Portrait of Charles I (op. cit., pp. 73, 77). 56. The outline is also visible in an infrared photograph of the painting taken in 1999; Roy 1999 (note 55), p. 80. 57. C. Christensen, M. Palmer and M. Swicklik, ‘Van Dyck’s painting technique, his writings, and three paintings in the National Gallery of Art’, in Anthony Van Dyck, Washington DC, 1990/1, p. 52. Although Ashok Roy’s article on the National Gallery Van Dycks provides analysis of Lord John Stuart and his Brother, Lord Bernard Stuart, the only paint crosssection taken was from an area of the costume; the pigments used in the flesh area are not described; Roy 1999 (note 55), pp. 80–81. 58. Christensen et al. 1990/1 (note 57), p. 73. 59. These pigment identifications were made with XRF analysis of the face of Lord Bernard Stuart which identified peaks for lead (Pb) indicating lead white, iron (Fe) and calcium (Ca) indicating earth pigments, mercury (Hg) and sulphur (S) indicating vermilion, and aluminium (Al) indicating a lake pigment. A reddish fluorescence of the flesh areas under ultraviolet light further supports the use of a red lake pigment. No cross-sections or dispersion samples were taken from any flesh areas as they were in excellent condition, and thus further identification of the blue, black and yellow pigments was not possible at this time. However identification of the blue pigment as Prussian blue used in the cloth over the sitter’s shoulder makes it likely that this was the blue pigment also used in the flesh areas. 60. See note 47. These pigment identifications were visually identified in paint cross-sections from both paintings taken when they were treated at the Hamilton Kerr Institute. The blue pigment was only identified in samples from Portrait of a Girl. For Portrait of William MacKinnon, see Technical Examination of HKI 994, unpublished report,

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Thomas Gainsborough as a copyist

Hamilton Kerr Institute, Cambridge 1984–85. For Portrait of a Girl see Technical Examination of HKI 1643, unpublished report, Hamilton Kerr Institute, Cambridge 1991. 61. D. Bomford, A. Roy and D. Saunders, ‘Gainsborough’s Dr. Ralph Schomberg’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 12, London 1988, p. 51. No sample was taken from this area of the painting when the article was published therefore the pigment was identified visually. 62. Roy 1999 (note 55), pp. 80–81. See this article for an image of the cross-section taken from the blue cloth. 63. The red pigments used are red lead and vermilion; Technical Examination of HKI 1643 (note 60). 64. S. Sloman, ‘Van Dyck’s continuing influence’, in K. Hearn (ed.), Van Dyck and Britain, London 2009, p. 206. 65. Sloman 2009 (note 64), pp. 208, 228. 66. C. Riding, ‘The Linley Sisters’, in M. Rosenthal and M. Myrone (eds), Gainsborough, London 2002, p. 120. 67. Cherry and Harris 1982 (note 13), p. 304. 68. M. Rosenthal and M. Myrone, ‘Portraiture and fashion’, in M. Rosenthal and M. Myrone (eds), Gainsborough, London 2002, p. 147. 69. Asfour and Williamson 1999 (note 30), pp. 14–17. 70. Hayes 1963 (note 49), p. 95. 71. Hayes 1963 (note 49) pp. 90–93. 72. It is important to note that The Descent from the Cross copy currently has a yellowed varnish layer on the surface, which is altering the tonality of Gainsborough’s bright colours. 73. The bright red paint used on the leftmost figure was identified as vermilion in XRF analysis, indicating that the similar colour used on Nicodemus is also vermilion. 74. D. Mannings, ‘Reynolds, Hogarth, and Van Dyck’, The Burlington Magazine, vol. 126, no. 980, 1984, p. 689.

75. Talley 1986 (note 2), p. 56. Reynolds experimented with materials to mimic the rich glazes and vivid colours of Old Master works; megilps and wax have been identified in his paintings from the 1780s; Talley 1986 (note 2), p. 55. His choices in experimental paint media have led to many of his paintings suffering from significant cracking and flaking issues as well as the fading of fugitive red lakes. Later in his career Reynolds collected Old Master paintings to experiment on, including scrubbing or scraping down the paintings layer by layer in order to find out how they had been constructed; unfortunately the results from his invasive experiments were often inconclusive; Talley 1986 (note 2), pp. 56–57. 76. Gainsborough identified the importance of a ‘rough’ surface in a letter to a client in 1758: ‘You please me much by saying that no other fault is found in your picture than the roughness of the surface, for that part being of use in giving force to the effect at a proper distance’; T. Gainsborough, ‘Letter to Mr. Robert Edgar’, Woodall 1961 (note 9), p. 63.

Author Kristina Mandy graduated from Barnard College (2006–2010) in New York with a BA in Art History obtained with honours. After earning her postgraduate diploma in Easel Paintings Conservation at the Courtauld Institute of Art, London (2010–2013) she undertook an internship at the Hamilton Kerr Institute (2013–2015) where she conducted her research on Gainsborough. This was followed by a six-month contract as a paintings conservator at National Museums Liverpool. In May 2016 she began the Patrick Lindsay Conservation Fellowship at the National Gallery, London.

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The Gainsborough’s House paint bladders: tin-based mordants and the attribution of artists’ materials SPIKE BUCKLOW AND KRISTINA MANDY Abstract This paper reports the analysis of materials in 19 paint bladders found in Gainsborough’s House, Sudbury, Suffolk. It considers the interpretation of results in terms of a possible connection between the paint bladders and the artist, Thomas Gainsborough. It concludes that the scientific analysis of artists’ materials cannot affirm the use of a specific material by a particular person and is capable of providing no more than a double negative. The paper is illustrated with the case of tin-based mordants in the eighteenth century.

Introduction Nineteen small bladders containing oil paints were discovered in the attic of Gainsborough’s House in 1966. Such bladders were commonly used to store readymade paints until the 1840s when they were superseded by relatively short-lived glass or brass paint syringes and then by the more enduring collapsible metal paint tubes. Each of the Gainsborough’s House paint bladders was about the size of a walnut and originally contained enough paint to provide around one or two square metres of colour. While most of the bladders appeared full, seven were relatively depleted (figures 1 and 2). An obvious question arises: did Thomas Gainsborough use these paints? One way to address this question might be with scientific analysis of the contents of the paint bladders followed by a comparison of the results with analyses of the materials found in Gainsborough’s paintings. An initial analysis of the paint bladders was undertaken 10 years ago by the Courtauld Institute, London.1 This paper follows further

Media The earlier study reported identifying linseed oil in three bladders, poppy oil in another three and nut oil in 12 (no medium was reported for one bladder).3 The method used could not distinguish between nut oil and mixtures of poppy and linseed oils, so it is entirely possible that six bladders contained either poppy or linseed oil while the others contained mixtures of the two.4 The use of linseed and nut oils is mentioned in both English and French sources while poppy oil was said to be especially popular in France.5 Labels suggest that the bladders were of French origin. Relatively few analyses of the paint media in Gainsborough’s paintings have been undertaken although in his Dr Ralph Schomberg (NG 684), Gainsborough used linseed oil in dark paint passages and poppy oil in lighter paint passages.6 This

Figure 1. A relatively full bladder. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

Figure 2. A relatively empty bladder. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

analysis carried out by the Hamilton Kerr Institute using other analytical techniques, and provides additional context for interpreting the results.2

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T h e G a i n s b o r o u g h ’s H o u s e p a i n t b l a d d e r s

Figure 3. Infrared reflectograph revealing the label for bladder 1/A.

pattern of use is also found in Mrs Siddons (NG 683) and John Plampin (NG 5984).7 However, the presence of linseed and poppy in the 19 bladders and in a few of Gainsborough’s paintings is not sufficient to connect the bladders to the painter since the practice of using both oils was widespread. Compared to linseed oil, poppy oil turns yellow relatively little upon ageing so it is commonly found in lighter paint passages. Linseed oil, on the other hand, dries faster than poppy oil and is therefore convenient to use in darker paint passages where its eventual discoloration will have less visual impact. As far as the paint media are concerned, Gainsborough was following established standard practice in his Dr Ralph Schomberg, Mrs Siddons and John Plampin, and the variety of oils in the collection of bladders would have been appropriate for any conscientious painter in oils.

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Throughout the eighteenth century, linseed was the most commonly used of the oils so the presence of poppy (and possibly nut) oil in the collection suggests that the bladders were probably relatively expensive. This impression is reinforced by French labels, which indicate they were imported, and also by the high quality of the pigments found in them. Historic, geographic and idiosyncratic patterns in artists’ use of pigments generally show more significant variation than patterns of use in paint media. The remainder of this paper therefore focuses on the pigments found in the paint bladders and in selected paintings by Gainsborough. Pigments The seven depleted paint bladders contained lead white, two earths, a yellow lake, Naples yellow, natural ultramarine and Prussian blue. The other


Hamilton Kerr Institute, Bulletin number 6, 2016

T h e G a i n s b o r o u g h ’s H o u s e p a i n t b l a d d e r s

Figure 4. Photomicrograph (PLM): ultramarine enhanced with some red lake from a sample from bladder number 3/C (photo taken at 400× magnification).

Figure 5. Photomicrograph (PLM): pure lead white pigment from a sample from bladder number 14/E (photo taken at 630× magnification).

bladders contained two more lead whites, an umber, five other yellow, red and brown iron-based or earth pigments, a second natural ultramarine, a bone black (also known as ivory black) and two different cochineals. The 19 bladders therefore include three whites, four yellows (one transparent and three opaque), four lighter earths, two darker earths, three blues, two transparent reds and a black. Polarised light microscopy (PLM) indicated that the pigments were all of a high quality (figure 3). The relatively small range of colour groups in the collection is far from the complete range of colours available in the eighteenth century which may indicate a purchase informed by the needs of a particular, and selective, palette. However, before attempting to assess whether the colour balance represented by the bladders might be comparable with the colour balances in Gainsborough’s paintings, some idiosyncrasies should be noted. Following common practice, Gainsborough’s use of poppy oil was generally associated with light paint passages, and one of the three lead white bladders was indeed mixed with poppy. Yet the other two lead whites were mixed with nut oil (or with blends of poppy and linseed). The other two poppy oils were found with an umber and the Prussian blue. Both these pigments are dark and one might have expected them to be mixed with linseed oil. So, one of the three apparently triplicate bladders of lead white actually had a different medium. The two apparently duplicating bladders of natural ultramarine also had different media (one linseed and one nut, or a mix of linseed and poppy).8 The collection of bladders might therefore represent either a series of purchases or materials destined for a series of paintings, each to be produced with differing degrees of concern with regard

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Figure 6. Photomicrograph (PLM): Prussian blue stain and substrate from a sample from bladder number 18/N (photo taken at 630× magnification).

to possible future discoloration. These interpretations might associate the bladders with a painter with a steady output or with a range of clients with differing expectations. The fact that more than twothirds of the paint (enough for a significant number of paintings) remained unused might also suggest a painter who lost, forgot or graduated from them. The presence of labels suggests that the Gainsborough’s House bladders were not prepared by an artist (figure 4). Paint bladders were an appropriate way to store readymade paints and were available ‘at most colour shops of note in London’ in the mid-eighteenth century.9 However, the paint they contained eventually hardened so it had to


Hamilton Kerr Institute, Bulletin number 6, 2016

T h e G a i n s b o r o u g h ’s H o u s e p a i n t b l a d d e r s

Figure 7. Correlation of sources on Gainsborough’s palette.

be used relatively soon after purchase. Expensive pigments (such as ultramarine and cochineal) and those that thickened quickly (for example Prussian blue) were therefore usually sold as dry powders that artists would mix with oils as required.10 If the bladders were indeed purchased by, or for, Thomas Gainsborough, they may represent his early studio practice. It may be unlikely that he would have wished to make a habit of wasting ultramarine and cochineal unless, when more successful in his later career, he was less concerned about the expense associated with waste. Paints The colours that Gainsborough used were reported by Mr Briggs, an artist neighbour of Gainsborough’s daughter. There is no indication as to whether these colours were readymade and provided in bladders or if the artist mixed his own dry pigments and oils as required. According to Briggs, the pigments used by Gainsborough were yellow ochre, Naples yellow, yellow lake, ‘probably a preparation of orpiment’, raw sienna, vermilion, light red, Venetian red, red lakes, burnt sienna, cologne earth, terra verte, ultramarine and Cremona white. All these pigments were found in the analysis of Dr Ralph Schomberg with the exception of ultramarine and orpiment, the only colour that Briggs listed with less confidence.11 Highly refined earth pigments, such as yellow ochre and raw sienna, can be surprisingly bright so might be mistaken for orpiment even by a relatively well-informed observer. Gainsborough’s use of ultramarine was also mentioned by Thornbury in 1862.12 However, at the time of writing, the conservation literature throws little light on Gainsborough’s use of ultramarine. In general, blue paint passages have been reported to contain Prussian blue, indigo and some smalt.13 Ultramarine looks significantly different from Prussian blue and the two are very unlikely

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to be mistaken for each other (figures 5 and 6). Indigo and smalt are also most unlikely to be confused with ultramarine as dry pigments – even if a similar result may be obtained with these blue pigments, each has different working properties. If Briggs’ list broadly corresponds with the pigments found in one of Gainsborough’s paintings, it also generally correlates with the collection of paint bladders, although the collection lacks vermilion and terra verte as well as the orpiment about which he was uncertain. Of course, little significance can be attached to the absence of these colours, which may once have been represented in the collection, then completely depleted and discarded or simply lost. More importance might be attached to the presence in the bladders of Prussian blue and bone black, not mentioned by Briggs, but found to have been used in Gainsborough’s paintings. Most of the paint bladders therefore contain pigments that are generically related to pigments found on Gainsborough’s paintings. If the uncertain orpiment is discounted – as a possible misinterpretation of a highly refined yellow earth – then currently the exception may appear to be ultramarine present in the collection in two bladders, one of which was relatively depleted.14 If Briggs’ and Thornbury’s reports are to be taken at face value then perhaps future examinations of Gainsborough’s blue paint passages should be sensitive to the possibility of finding ultramarine. Once published, such a discovery would remove one of the factors that might currently appear to distance the collection of bladders from Gainsborough’s technical practice. Comparing texts, such as the reports by Briggs and Thornbury, with the results of analysis of paint passages or paint bladders depends upon matching generic descriptions that employ historic craft terminology with specific descriptions that use modern chemical terminology (figure 7). In some cases, such as ultramarine and Prussian blue, the match is simple but in others the match is less straightforward. ‘Cremona white’, for example, does not appear in eighteenth-century treatises and is probably a corruption of ‘Cremnitz white’, which was a trade name for lead white.15 The chemical analysis of materials also allows greater specificity than may have been recorded in historical accounts. For example, Briggs mentioned ‘yellow lake’ which could plausibly correspond to the identification of buckthorn yellow in one of the paint bladders. Considerable craft knowledge surrounded such a material – it was utilised in medicine as a powerful laxative but its use in painting was tempered by the observation that it was prone to fading.16 The fact that buckthorn’s properties were widely known means they were rarely recorded. Briggs also mentioned ‘red lake’, a description that is entirely appropriate in the context since it refers to a pigment with a particular hue that will make a transparent paint (vermilion


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and the red earths have similar hues, but make opaque paints). However, from a chemical point of view, ‘red lake’ is a term that covers a very wide range of materials. And, like the presence of ultramarine, the specific nature of one material found in one of the two red lake paint bladders might seem to distance the collection from Gainsborough’s technical practice. Red lakes are therefore worthy of more detailed examination. Lake pigments are liquid dyes, like buckthorn yellow, that are absorbed onto or fixed within colourless solid particles. The nature of both the dyestuffs and the colourless ‘mordant’ particles can vary. The number of red dyes available to painters expanded rapidly in the first half of the nineteenth century but these are unlikely to be found in paint delivered in bladders since they had been superseded by metal tubes. The red dyestuffs used by eighteenth-century painters included lac, kermes and cochineal (all extracted from insects) and madder (extracted from plant roots).17 The dyestuff in both the red lakes in the collection of paint bladders was cochineal. However, all the sources of red, including cochineal, had been available for millennia and remained in use after Gainsborough’s death. Variation in the identity of dyestuffs therefore cannot throw light upon any connection between the painter and the bladders. On the other hand, the colourless mordants did change in ways that might elucidate the paint bladders’ significance. The mordant for the buckthorn yellow lake and for one of the red lakes in the bladders was based on aluminium, which has a long history of use. Aluminium-based mordants were reported in a technical survey of red lake passages in Gainsborough’s Dr Ralph Schomberg and Mrs Siddons, and in 12 other eighteenth-century paintings.18 Aluminiumbased lake pigments were also detected in the red glazes of the Gainsborough’s House Lord Bernard Stuart, a copy after Van Dyck.19 To date, the mordants reported from lakes in Gainsborough’s paintings were made exclusively from aluminium compounds. However, the mordant in one of the two red lake paint bladders includes tin compounds. Finding a tin mordant in one of the bladders might seem to distance the bladders from Gainsborough since it has not been identified in analyses of his paintings. The absence of ultramarine from published lists of materials identified in Gainsborough’s paintings may reflect his conscious choice of blue pigments, since ultramarine was most certainly available throughout his lifetime. Whether or not the absence of tin-based mordants also reflects Gainsborough’s choice is a more complex question. In part, it involves the historical availability of tinbased mordants. Tin mordants The same paper that surveyed the red lakes in eighteenth-century paintings also studied 30 nineteenth-century paintings. Of these, 13 contained

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aluminium, 14 contained tin and two contained calcium (no mordant could be detected on one painting). Together, these surveys suggest that tinbased mordants are most commonly associated with paintings from the second half of the nineteenth century.20 The presence of a tin-based mordant in a paint bladder is significant, since paint bladders had more or less become obsolete by the second half of the nineteenth century. The Gainsborough’s House paint bladder collection therefore includes a sample of pigment that predates the occurrence of the pigment in those paintings surveyed. However, theoretically, tin-based mordants could have been available much earlier. Cornelius Drebbel (1572–1634) made spectacular red cochineal-and-tin dyes that were used on wool and silk in London’s Stratford-by-Bow dyeworks and which attained commercial significance in the early seventeenth century.21 Before coming to England, Drebbel was apprenticed to the painter Hendrik Goltzius and his subsequent career in technical innovation was probably influenced by Goltzius’ interest in alchemy.22 After Drebbel’s death, his tin-based red dye was very effectively exploited by his more commercially minded sons-in-law who renamed it ‘Kuffler’s colour’ and marketed it across Holland and France.23 While red tin-based dyes had a significant impact on European textile production throughout the seventeenth century, they have yet to be identified in seventeenth-century British paintings. Their use in textile dyeing continued throughout the eighteenth century and Pierre Joseph Macquer (1718–1784), a Scottish Jacobite living in Paris, presented 40 tin-based dyes to the Royal Academy of Sciences in 1777.24 He disseminated his findings widely and published his influential Dictionnaire de Chymie in 1778.25 Back in England, in 1758, the apothecary and chemist Robert Dossie (1717–1777) published his influential Handmaid of the Arts in which he criticised a recently published ‘French Cyclopedia’ for giving ‘two or three old recipes’ for red lake colours which, in his opinion, only made a ‘bad lake of scarlet rags’. However, Dossie was also of the opinion that this colour was ‘best prepared’ in France, where the process was ‘kept a secret’.26 Painters traditionally acquired their transparent red lake dyestuffs from recycled offcuts of textiles, a process that was described in numerous pigment recipe books of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries.27 Analyses of artists’ lake pigments in paintings show that they were indeed often derived from dyed textiles. Artists’ paints contain the organic colorant (in the case of the Gainsborough’s House paint bladder, a red insect extract) plus the inorganic mordant that had been used to attach the colour to the cloth (in this case, one based upon tin). Sometimes, artists’ paints even contained traces of the cloth itself (usually in the form of coagulated proteins from wool or silk). By far the most commonly used mordant found in paintings throughout


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the eighteenth century was based upon aluminium. However, eighteenth-century painters did not generally make their own lake pigments and they almost certainly did not know the exact chemical composition of their paints. Although their colours could vary significantly, red lakes based on tin or aluminium could not be distinguished reliably by the naked eye. Since artists’ lake colours were historically derived from textiles, the dominance of aluminium-based mordants in eighteenth-century paints, as suggested by technical surveys such as that cited above, merely reflects their dominance in the textile industry – they had been securely established in textile dyeing for millennia.28 The materials required to make aluminium-based mordants were subject to monopoly in the sixteenth century, were the subject of espionage and exploration in the seventeenth century and were widely exploited throughout the eighteenth century, although private monopolies were still attempted.29 Indeed, Macquer’s presentation of 40 tin-based dyes to the Royal Academy of Sciences could be interpreted as indicating a systematic search to break monopolies and find alternatives to aluminium-based mordants. They represent attempts to turn tin from a specialist material, used for Drebbel’s or Kuffler’s red dye, into a more general and widely applicable mordant. A degree of secrecy still surrounded the manufacture of red lake pigments into the nineteenth century. In 1840, Henry Newton, one of the founding partners of the English colour merchants Winsor & Newton, speculated that French ‘carmines’ were tin-based since they were heavier than English ‘carmines’ which he knew were aluminium-based.30 When Winsor & Newton finally made a tin-based red lake, they called it ‘French carmine’. The evidence from paintings appears to suggest that tin only started to challenge aluminium’s dominance as a mordant for painters (as opposed to a mordant for dyers) in the second half of the nineteenth century, when it was provided in tubes, after the demise of the paint bladder. This fact makes the Gainsborough’s House tin-containing paint bladder of particular interest. The bladders’ French labels reinforce Henry Newton’s impression that tin mordants may have been more established in France than in England. Tin-based mordants may have represented a relatively small proportion of all textile mordants in the eighteenth century but their presence in the direct supply chain for artists’ red lake colours – some of which were extracted from cloth – means that the presence of tin on an eighteenth-century painter’s palette cannot be discounted. The number of paintings analysed to date is, after all, a statistically insignificant fraction of the number of paintings produced. Thus far, surveys of artists’ use of red lakes over the period in question, while in themselves being of great value, simply suggest broad

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tendencies. Crucially, the terminus post quem implied by a tin-based mordant lies in the early seventeenth century as reinforced by the discovery of a tin-based mordant in a mid-eighteenth-century painting from Germany.31 Discussion All the pigments in the collection of bladders, including the ultramarine and cochineal-based lakes on tin-based mordants, were theoretically available to Gainsborough. They are not anachronistic and their apparent absence from his palette may have been due to personal choice.32 This is more likely for ultramarine, since this pigment was evidently quite different from the alternative blues such as smalt, indigo and Prussian blue, which he seems to have favoured. Yet it could be argued that Gainsborough is very unlikely to have eschewed the use of ultramarine completely. Ultramarine was, after all, one of the most prestigious pigments, with a very long history of use and with many advocates in the eighteenth century. Perhaps he tried it as a young painter but came to prefer the newer, and much cheaper, Prussian blue. However, the exercise of choice is less likely to explain the absence of tin-based red lakes since Gainsborough probably did not know the exact nature of his lakes. Indeed, the variability of red lakes was of concern to artists, as is evident in Reynolds’ longstanding difficulties with fading carmines.33 The faded jacket in Dr Ralph Schomberg suggests that Gainsborough was also not immune to the variability of red lake pigments.34 Alternatively, the apparent absence of ultramarine and tin-based mordants from Gainsborough’s palette may simply be due to the fact that the paint passages analysed to date provide a far from representative sample of the artist’s overall use of materials. Superficially, the probability that Gainsborough himself actually used the paint bladders might be discounted if a larger proportion of his oeuvre is analysed. However, assuming that future analyses might one day indicate Gainsborough’s use of both ultramarine and tin-based mordants, the more complete match between the materials in the 19 bladders and his paintings would still not prove that he actually used the paint bladders – it would only marginally reinforce the current state of knowledge which provides no reason to suggest that he could not have used them. For example, all Gainsborough’s paintings that have been analysed so far have been found to contain lead white, and the collection has two bladders containing lead white. The match between different lead whites could theoretically be made more specific since the geographic probable origin of this pigment’s key ingredient, lead metal, can be determined.35 Yet, even if the lead white in some of Gainsborough’s paintings and the lead white in the paint bladders came from exactly the same lead mine, that fact would not itself constitute proof of


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T h e G a i n s b o r o u g h ’s H o u s e p a i n t b l a d d e r s

Acknowledgements

use as lead white was ubiquitous in the European painting tradition. Scientific analysis is capable of providing no more than a double-negative answer to the question of the paint bladders’ ownership. Even without finding tin-based red lakes in Gainsborough’s paintings, the analysis shows that there is no reason why Gainsborough could not have used the paint bladders. However, the circumstantial evidence suggests that, if they were Gainsborough’s, then he outgrew them. Paint bladders were generally expensive yet these particular ones were lost or forgotten, which implies that they were not a crucial part of his studio apparatus. Also, those of his paintings that have been analysed to date suggest that he did not become a habitual user of ultramarine. The paint bladders may therefore be more plausibly associated with his early, rather than late, practice. We must conclude that the French paint bladders could have been purchased in Thomas Gainsborough’s lifetime and scientific analysis produces nothing to prevent us from speculating that they may indeed have been used by him.

The authors would like to thank the Director of Gainsborough’s House, Mark Bills, and the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art for their support.

Notes

1. The authors are grateful for publication of the results from the Courtauld analysis in helping with this more recent analysis. See A. Burnstock, K.J. van der Berg and R. Bubb, ‘A collection of artists’ paint bladders from Gainsborough’s House’, Zeitschrift für Kunsttechnologie und Konservierung, vol. 19, no. 2, 2005, pp. 264–72 (linseed in bladders F, G and L, poppy in E, K and N, see the appendix). 2. The analysis undertaken at the Hamilton Kerr Institute included polarised light microscopy (PLM) on tiny samples taken from the rim of the paint bladders and non-destructive X-ray fluorescence (XRF) analysis using a Bruker Handheld XRF Tracer III-V+. This expanded on the energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) spectroscopy, X-ray power diffraction (XRD), and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) employed for the Courtauld analysis. The more recent analysis largely confirmed the results of the previous analysis, with the major distinction being that bladder 16/H has been more recently identified as lead white. See the appendix to this paper for a brief summary. 3. Burnstock et al. 2005 (note 1). 4. Burnstock et al. 2005 (note 1), p. 269, ref. 37. 5. Burnstock et al. 2005 (note 1), p. 269. 6. J. Mills and R. White, ‘Analyses of paint media’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 11, 1987, p. 94. 7. R. White and J. Pilc, ‘Analyses of paint media’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 19, 1998, pp. 90–91. 8. Burnstock et al. (note 1), p. 272, table 1. 9. L. Carlyle, The Artist’s Assistant, London 2001, p. 147. 10. Carlyle 2001 (note 9), pp. 148–49. 11. W.T. Whitley, Thomas Gainsborough, London, 1915, pp. 245–46, cited in D. Bomford, A. Roy and D. Saunders, ‘Gainsborough’s “Dr Ralph Schomberg”’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 12, 1988 pp. 44–57, esp. p. 48. 12. R. Jones and M. Postle, ‘Gainsborough in his painting room’, in M. Rosenthal and M. Myrone (eds), Gainsborough, London 2002, p. 34. 13. Jones and Postle 2002 (note 12), p. 35. 14. Ultramarine in Gainsborough’s palette has been reported orally. R. Jones, ‘Studio practice and the training of painters’, in The Painting Rooms: The Artist’s Studio in Eighteenth Century Britain Conference, Sotheby’s Institute of Art, London, and Gainsborough’s House Sudbury, 29 and 30 October, 2015. 15. Bomford et al. 1988 (note 11), p. 48. 16. M. Grieve, A Modern Herbal, C.F. Leyel (ed.), Harmondsworth 1977, pp. 134–37. 17. S. Bucklow, Red, London 2016, pp. 21–34. 18. J. Kirby, M. Spring and C. Higgitt, ‘The technology of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century red lake pigments’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 28, 2007, pp. 69–95, esp. p. 88. 19. Hamilton Kerr Institute, University of Cambridge, unpublished report 2940, 2015. 20. Kirby et al. 2007 (note 18), pp. 88–93.

Appendix No. (ZKK)36 Colour Use 1 A brown slight 2

B

3 4

C D

5 6 7

M R G

8

J

9

O

10 11

P L

12

F

13

K

14 15

E I

16

H

17 18

Q N

19

S

Results earth / chalk red some cochineal Al/Sn blue significant ultramarine yellow significant buckthorn Al white slight lead white yellow slight earth dark slight ultramarine blue redsignificant umber brown dark slight earth red white slight lead white brown some cochineal Al light significant earth brown red slight umber brown white slight lead white yellow significant Naples yellow37 white significant lead white / chalk black slight bone black blue significant Prussian blue dark slight earth brown

Label ...rre de Sienne ...\o... ...u... (no label) Blanc de... Ocre Jai... (no label) (illegible) (illegible) Blanc... (illegible) ...b...o... (illegible) ...a...c de Ja... (no label) ..e d’Ivoire (no label) (illegible)

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21. C. Wilson, ‘Cloth production and international competition in the seventeenth century’, Economic History Review, new series, vol. 13, no. 2, 1960, p. 215. 22. G. Doorman, ‘Review of The Two Netherlanders: Humphrey Bradley and Cornelius Drebbel, by L.E. Harris’, Isis, vol. 54, no. 1, 1963, pp. 160–63. 23. R.L. Lee, ‘American cochineal in European commerce, 1526–1625’, Journal of Modern History, vol. 23, no. 2, 1951, pp. 222–23. 24. L.J.M. Coleby, The Chemical Studies of P.J. Macquer, London 1938, p. 95. 25. Coleby 1938 (note 24), pp. 9–15. 26. R. Dossie, ‘Of carmine’, in R. Dossie, The Handmaid to the Arts, London, 1758, vol. 1, pp. 54–55. 27. See, for example, Bolognese MS (V, 139), in M.P. Merrifield, Original Treatises on the Arts of Painting, New York 1967, vol. 2, p. 456. 28. C. Singer, The Earliest Chemical Industry, London 1948. 29. S. Fairlie, ‘Dyestuffs in the eighteenth century’, Economic History Review, new series, vol. 1, no. 3, 1965, p. 503. 30. Winsor & Newton archive, P4P138-9, 1940. Hamilton Kerr Institute, University of Cambridge. 31. F. Schott, unpublished diplomarbeit, Technische Universität, Munich, 2006, cited in Kirby et al. 2007 (note 18), p. 84. 32. The pigments were available over a long period, including Gainsborough’s lifetime. Since all the paints also contain carbon (in the oil medium), carbon-14 dating is possible. However, the analysis of organic material that postdates the mid-seventeenth century is not recommended (by the Oxford Radiocarbon Accelerator Unit) as such materials are likely to provide ambiguous results. 33. ‘Rev. W. Mason’s observations’, in W. Cotton (ed), Sir Joshua Reynolds’ Notes and Observations on Pictures, London 1859, pp. 51–52. 34. Bomford et al. 1988 (note 11), pp. 52–54. 35. D. Fabian and G. Fortunato, ‘Tracing white’, in J. Kirby, S. Nash and J. Cannon (eds), Trade in Artists’ Materials, London 2010, pp. 426–43.

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36. Identification system in Burnstock et al. 2005 (note 1). A second identification system was imposed as the bladders became mixed up after the first analysis. 37. Portable X-ray fluorescence (pXRF) analysis at the Hamilton Kerr Institute identified traces of chromium, which was confirmed by scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive X-ray (SEM-EDX) analysis. This suggests a contamination of the bladder with a chrome pigment that has been in continuous use since its introduction in the nineteenth century. Such contamination may have occurred when the bladders were in the care of the Suffolk artist, John Addyman, between 1966 and 1989.

Authors Spike Bucklow has a first degree in Chemistry, a doctorate in Art History and is a qualified conservator. He is the author of The Alchemy of Paint (2009), The Riddle of the Image (2014) and Red (2016). His research interests include historic artists’ materials and methods. He is currently working on a seventeenth-century still life painting, to be published in 2018 as The Anatomy of Riches. He currently teaches at the Hamilton Kerr Institute. Kristina Mandy graduated from Barnard College (2006–2010) in New York with a BA in Art History obtained with honours. After earning her postgraduate diploma in Easel Paintings Conservation at the Courtauld Institute of Art, London (2010–2013) she undertook an internship at the Hamilton Kerr Institute (2013–2015) where she conducted her research on Gainsborough. This was followed by a six-month contract as a paintings conservator at National Museums Liverpool. In May 2016 she began the Patrick Lindsay Conservation Fellowship at the National Gallery, London.


Daniël Seghers, phoenix of flower-painters SVEN VAN DORST Abstract When Daniël Seghers returned from Italy in the late 1620s he transformed the painted flower piece in the Low Countries. Strong chiaroscuro effects and a new approach to the depiction of flower wreaths or flower garlands draped around a painted cartouche became his trademark. A recently discovered, unfinished composition by the master gave new insights into his working practices. The first stage of the painting process, the dead colouring, played a key role in the creation of the flower piece. The almost abstract brightly coloured shapes laid out on the grey ground enabled the master to create astonishing effects. Comparing a flower piece from the Fitzwilliam Museum collection with a composition from the Royal Collection Trust (RCT) showed how the artist reused successful compositions. The systematic approach and the collaborative nature of his cartouches became clear when looking at the technical evidence. His technique and methodology were soon emulated by other artists working in Antwerp, making it difficult to attribute these works.

Figure 1. Jan Lievens, Portrait of Daniël Seghers, c.1636, black chalk on paper, 23.9 × 20.2 cm. The British Library, London. © The British Library Board.

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Introduction The poet Joos van den Vondel called Daniël Seghers the ‘phoenix of flower-painters’, and compared him to the ancient Greek artist Parrhasius (figure 1).1 This article aims to rekindle interest in this forgotten artist and allow him to arise from the ashes like the mystical bird described by Vondel. Never before have the painting methods and materials of Seghers been the subject of a technical publication. All the stages of the artistic process will be addressed, from the use of studio models to the finishing touches. The recent discovery of an unfinished composition on the back of A Vase of Flowers by Daniël Seghers, kept at the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, prompted this thorough study of the artist’s technique.2 It may well be the only example of a seventeenth-century flower painting left in the dead-colouring stage and is therefore of great importance for the study of the genre. Father Seghers ‘Nature, the Mother, battles with Father Seghers: Who creates the finest rose, either me or your brush?’.3 These are the first lines of one of Constantijn Huygens’ poems to celebrate the flower painter Daniël Seghers.4 Once one of the most renowned and sought-after artists, his name is little known today. Seghers was born in Antwerp in 1590 but lived with his mother’s Protestant relatives in Utrecht during his youth. He returned to the Southern Netherlands at about the age of 20. Shortly thereafter he was apprenticed to Jan Brueghel the Elder and in 1611 was admitted to the Antwerp Guild of St Luke.5 Shortly after he left Brueghel’s studio, Seghers became a lay brother at the Jesuit house in Mechelen, and after a brief stay in Rome he took up permanent residence at the Antwerp Jesuit Professenhuis (teaching house).6 Brueghel had a productive studio and was one of the pioneers in the depiction of flower vases and garlands. It seems that Seghers mainly made copies of his master’s compositions during his stay there and mentions copying a work by his teacher at the request of the unrelated painter, Gerard Seghers.7 An inventory of Brueghel’s possessions also mentions a painting of a flower vase by his pupil.8 As part of his religious training, Daniël Seghers stayed in Rome between 1625 and 1627. It is unclear if he spent time studying the city’s ancient monuments or the work of contemporary artists. It seems likely that the vibrant artistic scene in Rome had an influence on his work. After his return to Antwerp, he developed a distinctive style, more dramatic and colourful than Brueghel’s serene bouquets. The artist created dynamic compositions by arranging separate bouquets or festoons upon a sculpted cartouche. These bas-reliefs were painted in grisaille and decorated with elaborate scrollwork, typical of Baroque architecture. Seghers remained in Antwerp for the rest of his life, working in the Jesuit teaching house where his

Figure 2. Daniël Seghers, A Cartouche Embellished with a Garland of Flowers, 1649, oil on copper, 87 × 60.7 cm. Royal Collection, London. Royal Collection Trust/© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2016.

Figure 3. Daniël Seghers, A Vase of Flowers, recto, c.1650, oil on copper, 48 × 35 cm. The Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge © Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.

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studio was located, as the courtier Philippe Chifflet recalls: ‘Archduke Leopold-Wilhelm of Austria was received by the Jesuits and brought through the garden, to the room of our painter Seghers, where he examined everything attentively, spoke freely with the painter and stayed about half an hour.’9 The garden was of practical and spiritual importance to the Jesuits and the Antwerp order maintained a common and pharmaceutical garden within the walls of the teaching house. Seghers’ fellow Jesuit, David Joannes, used the garden as a metaphor in his Bloem-hof der kerckelicker cerimonien (Flower garden of church ceremonies). Other examples can be found in the Imago Primi Saeculi, where the Jesuits claimed to have entered a spiritual wilderness when they arrived in Calvinist Flanders, but soon transformed it into a paradise.10 The flower garlands Seghers painted must therefore be seen within the religious context of the CounterReformation, as well as the specific physical context of the Jesuit teaching house.11 Seghers’ works were used as Catholic propaganda by the order, and were therefore often signed ‘Daniel Seghers Soc. JESU’. Painted floral garlands, first introduced at the beginning of the seventeenth century by Jan Brueghel the Elder, were intended to function as devotional images, celebrating God’s creation and often framing a religious image in the centre. Seghers’ paintings were presented as gifts by the Jesuit Society to monarchs, highly placed officials, cardinals and other influential people. In return they would donate money, relics or valuable objects to the order or grant the Jesuits certain privileges. In 1645 the Protestant Prince Frederick Henry of Orange sent his court painter to Antwerp, asking for one of Seghers’ famous flower paintings. After receiving one of his works, the prince sent precious gifts and a letter of safe conduct for travel in parts of the Northern Netherlands. From Frederick Henry’s widow, Amalia of Solms, the Jesuit artist received a golden pallet, six golden brush holders and a golden maulstick with an enamel skull on top.12 Only a few apprentices are known to have worked in Seghers’ studio, all already advanced in their careers and often connected to a European court. Jan Philip van Thielen, a nobleman from Mechelen, imitated his teacher’s style the closest and according to contemporary sources they also collaborated on some projects.13 The artist’s health weakened by the late 1650s and eventually he died in the winter of 1661. He was buried in the Chapel of Our Lady in the Antwerp Jesuit church, surrounded by his own masterpieces.14 So, to finish with Huygens’ praises: ‘Nature as judge, concede defeat in the contest: The painted flower rendered the real one a shadow.’15

Figure 4. Detail of A Cartouche Embellished with a Garland of Flowers (figure 2): top left corner.

Fitzwilliam Museum, the other a large cartouche from the Royal Collection Trust (RCT) (figures 2 and 3).16 As the composition of the Vase of Flowers is almost identical to the top left corner of the Cartouche Embellished with a Garland of Flowers (figure 4), a comparative study was undertaken. The garland was probably presented to the future King Charles II of England when he visited the artist’s studio in 1649. According to one of Seghers’ biographers, he also asked the sovereign to take with him ‘the flowers which the Young prince of Orange (Charles II brother in law) had requested’.17 The artist himself also mentions this visit in his Catalogue of the Flower-pieces, which I have painted with my one hand and for whom. This unique document was written in the year of his death and survives through an eighteenth-century copy. It lists 239 works and is ordered chronologically to a certain extent. Catalogue entry 192 mentions: ‘A cartouche for the King of England during his entry in Antwerp’.18 The Vase of Flowers in the Fitzwilliam Museum is more difficult to trace. Numerous kleijn bloempottjen (small flowerpots) and klijn blom glasken (small flower glasses) are mentioned in Seghers’ catalogue. Catalogue entry 190, for example, reads: ‘A small flower glass for Sr Verhulst Clark of the Secretary Huijgens’ (Constantijn Huygens). Couvreur mentions the connection with a flower vase auctioned in 1722 at the house of the deceased Willem Van Hulst in London.19 Unfortunately the provenance of the Fitzwilliam painting is unknown prior to 1947 therefore the connection to Van Hulst cannot be verified.

Selected paintings The two paintings examined in the studios of the Hamilton Kerr Institute are exemplary of Seghers’ distinctive style: one is a small flower vase from the

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Nevertheless, painting flowers from life was highly regarded. Brueghel, for example, boasted to his patron, Cardinal Federico Borromeo, that he painted all the flowers in his painting from life. Technical analysis by Murray and Groen on one of Brueghel’s flowerpots at the Fitzwilliam Museum revealed, however, that this could not be the case.25 Firsthand observation was highly praised in the late sixteenth century because drawn flowers often had didactical purposes within universities or as part of an encyclopaedic series on natural elements, popular at European courts. The painter and art theorist Gérard de Lairesse also stressed the importance of a flower garden, beside the use of models:

Figure 5. Detail of A Vase of Flowers, verso: lacuna revealing scratches in the copper plate and grey ground layer.

It is necessary to have a flower garden, and building this one diligently, so he will, if the time of the year allows such things, always receive beautiful flowers: Although the modelling is a great aid, if it is winter, and the life is no longer available, one can continue his practises, nevertheless no one can reach perfection without the life. He who has a steady and quick hand in drawing, and knows how to use the watercolours, has a double advantage, collecting a treasure of beautifully modelled flowers over time, sought after by many art lovers, well paid, and highly valued.26

At least five other flower paintings by Seghers are compositionally related to the paintings at the RCT and the Fitzwilliam Museum. The artist used the same flower arrangements or the same individual flowers in a number of compositions. For example, a Garland with Virgin and Child from around 1645, in which the flowers seem to be copied, form the lower part of the RCT cartouche.20 In another garland painting in Braunschweig, dated c.1645–50, the bouquet in the top right corner has the same basic composition as the lower right corner of the RCT cartouche. Although some of the small flowers are identical, the large flowers vary significantly.21 The pink rose, for example, is seen from the front in one picture, and from the back in the other. The other related works can be found in the Gallerie Nazionali di Capodimonte, Naples (1645), a cartouche in Berlin (1647) and a painting in Dresden from c.1650–55.22 Patterns and designs As mentioned above, Seghers reused successful arrangements or individual flowers in several of his works. Paintings related to the RCT cartouche range from the mid-1640s until the mid-1650s. In contrast to his teacher, Jan Brueghel the Elder, Seghers seldom copied an entire composition. The use of pattern books or studio models was common in the seventeenth century and is often mentioned in painters’ manuals of the period. Drawings were especially valuable for flower painters because of the fugitive nature of their models and the limited accessibility of rare species. The Nieuwen verlichter der konst-schilders describes this practice in relationship to the painter Jan van Kessel the Elder: ‘Then, if he wanted to make some paintings, he went to his studies, of which he had gathered a lot: the same would be accessed by his son.’23 The use of models also allowed artists to paint flowers that did not bloom at the same time of the year. Seghers mentions in his own inventory ‘a cartouche with flowers from all seasons’.24

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At present there are no drawings of flowers attributed to Daniël Seghers – the only known autographed drawing is a small landscape in the collection of the Staatliche Museum, Berlin. In 1797 a collection of drawings, supposedly by Seghers, was sold at auction. The lot contained drawings of 178 different tulips and other flowers, executed in gouache on vellum. Unfortunately there is no trace of these drawings nor can their authorship be verified.27 The use of painted or drawn models would have made it possible for Seghers to plan his compositions in an efficient way which may explain the limited amount of pentimenti visible in the paintings at the Fitzwilliam Museum and the RCT. In these works the artist did not divert much from his initial underlayer or dead colouring. Although Seghers worked systematically, there are examples where he changed his mind in the final stage of painting,28 showing that he was still searching for new compositions or improving existing studio models. Materials and techniques Support and ground The two examined flower pieces were painted on thin copper panels. The smooth surface, which allowed artists to paint minute details and create trompe l’oeil effects, was especially popular with still life and genre painters. At the end of the sixteenth century Antwerp became an important centre for the copper trade, housing the offices of several


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German, Austrian and Hungarian copper mines. Copper was also in demand for the many printing and publishing workshops within the city walls. Coppersmiths provided panels in standard sizes, named grieck-; devotie- or passie- size.29 Many of Seghers’ flower pieces on copper supports have corresponding dimensions. A number of cartouches in the artists’ oeuvre measure approximately 3 × 2 Antwerp feet (86 × 61 cm), like the RCT painting. Contemporary documents mention similar works such as ‘a copper panel of 3 feet high and placed in an ebony frame’.30 On the Vase of Flowers, fine scratches can be observed in the copper support where the paint has delaminated (figure 5). It was common practice to roughen the surface of the copper plate before applying the ground layer. The removal of the red cuprous oxide improved the adhesion between the metal support and the paint layers.31 In the paintings examined the grey ground layer was brushed onto the support in broad strokes; on close inspection, the brush marks can still be seen in the final result. The preparation layer of the Fitzwilliam Museum flower vase painting consists mainly of lead white, a little bone black and only a small amount of orange-brown earth pigments.32 Dead colouring On top of the grey ground the artist laid in the position of the most important bouquets or flower wreaths. He indicated the principal flowers with monochrome, brightly coloured shapes. This stage is called the dead colouring or dood-verf. Gérard de Lairesse described the dead-colouring stage in relation to flower paintings in his Groot schilderboek. When depicting a festoon he recommends painting the wreath and greenery first before positioning the flowers: ‘When dry, one shall arrange the flowers on it, the most important first, each on their place, indicating these with one singular colour, red, blue, or yellow, of such a shade that one can skilfully paint their day and shadow from life, or from models.’33 De Lairesse’s methodology becomes clear when looking at a recently discovered, unfinished composition by Seghers (figure 6), found on the back of the Vase of Flowers, kept at the Fitzwilliam Museum and hidden from view for many decades. For unknown reasons the artist abandoned this project and painted a similar composition on the verso of the copper panel. It provides a unique insight into his artistic process and the methodology of seventeenth-century still-life painters. The almost abstract, brightly coloured shapes resemble more the work of a twentieth-century avant-garde artist than a Baroque still life. As de Lairesse described, no shading or nuances were added – the colours were put in place before the dark background and tabletop were painted in. All of this was done wet-in-wet, blending in the transitions between the coloured shapes and the background. In completed works, the bright, flat

Figure 6. Daniël Seghers, A Vase of Flowers, verso, oil on copper, 48 × 35 cm. The Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge © Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.

underpainting seems to protrude through some of the flowers. Although the dead colouring plays an important role in the final result, this effect is often enhanced by the increasing transparency of the paint layers. Infrared reflectography (IRR) makes it possible to visualise the shapes of the underlying dead colouring to a certain extent and shows that the coloured inlay is always smaller than the final flowers painted on top. Like the front of the Fitzwilliam Vase of Flowers, the verso is related to the RCT composition (figures 7 and 8). The IRR of the top right corner of the cartouche closely resembles the abandoned dead colouring on the verso of the Fitzwilliam painting. The intended flower vase would have appeared similar to the bouquet in the top right corner of the cartouche. When digitally superimposing the two on top of each other, discrepancies can be noted – shapes vary and the tulip and iris are placed farther away from the bouquet in the RCT painting. This suggests that the artist did not trace the composition and positioned the flowers freehand or sketched them in with a material undetectable with IRR. The pigment mixtures on both sides of the Fitzwilliam painting are compatible.34 The vibrant red areas consist mainly of red lead, some vermilion and a small amount of lead white; a red lake pigment is probably present in small quantities. Similar paint mixtures can also be seen in earlier flower pieces by Jan Brueghel the Elder and Balthasar van der

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Figure 9. Cross-section from a stem in the centre of A Vase of Flowers, verso (figure 3): grey ground layer (a), followed by the dark grey colour of the background (b) and a single green layer (c) above.

Ast.35 The bright red provided a good basis for the depiction of tulips and other red flowers. Lead white and red lake are the main components of the pink underpainting. Small orange-red particles can be seen in the samples, suggesting that a little red lead was added. The yellow areas contain only lead white and lead-tin yellow. The green-coloured blotches in between the flowers were applied thinly upon the grey ground (figure 9). They are a mix of yellow and blue pigments, mainly lead-tin yellow, azurite and lead white. Fine red and yellow-brown particles visible in the samples are likely to be earth pigments.36 The azurite seems to be sitting in a yellowish, translucent matrix. An organic yellow lake pigment could be present, but this was not confirmed with analysis. Mixed greens were commonly used by artists in this period because of dissatisfaction with the available green pigments. In his treatise on art, Samuel van Hoogstraten noted: ‘I wish that we had a green pigment as good as a red or yellow. Green earth is too weak, Spanish green (Verdigris) too crude and ashes (artificial verditer) not sufficiently durable.’37 A similar layer structure was observed in the RCT cartouche. No cross-sections were taken so findings were based on visual examination and X-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectroscopy. On top of the grey ground layer the artist painted in the dead colouring in a manner similar to the Vase of Flowers. Brightly coloured shapes were painted directly on top of the ground, and green blotches were placed in between the flowers. The artist seems to have used a bright green paint in between the coloured shapes and a more brownish tone underneath the ivy branches. After indicating the main flowers of the bouquets and the swirls of ivy, the grisaille scrollwork and dark background were painted in. A similar cartouche in the Mauritshuis in The Hague shows a different layer structure – in this painting a dark grey colour was painted around the dead colouring and once dry the bas-relief backdrop was added.38 The cartouches are likely to have been painted by an artist outside Seghers’ studio and therefore differ

Figure 7. Detail of A Cartouche Embellished with a Garland of Flowers (figure 2): top right corner.

Figure 8. Detail of A Cartouche Embellished with a Garland of Flowers (figure 2): infrared reflectograph of the top right corner.

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in appearance and execution.39 Again this shows how methodically the artist worked: he knew where to place the wreaths and bouquets before the backdrop was put in place. The grisaille could have been outlined with chalk before commencing the dead colouring. Paint layer In his Groot schilderboek, de Lairesse emphasises the technical difficulties painters had to overcome when depicting flowers. The wide range of colours needed to render all the different sorts of plants and flowers demanded a thorough understanding of the pigments available. He commented: ‘Good knowledge of the paints is required, knowing which are stable and resistant: and beside this one shall also take note of the nature of the flowers and treat them accordingly.’40 Seghers made use of a variety of pigments, but also layered different colours on top of each other to achieve certain effects. The purple flowers in the RCT cartouche, for example, were built up by painting a transparent blue layer on top of the pink dead colouring (figure 10). In between the delicate brushstrokes the underlayer is clearly visible, creating a playful effect of pink and purple tones. The semi-transparent top layer probably contains ultramarine blue, some red lake, lead white and a large amount of medium.41 The drying cracks, especially visible in IRR, are likely to have been caused by a copious amount of drying oil in the paint mixture (figure 11).42 Another example of layering two different colours is seen in the orange areas where the artist applied a yellow on top of the bright red underlayer. XRF analysis indicates the presence of the arsenic-based pigments realgar and/or orpiment. This orange or yellow pigment, widely used during the seventeenth century, was known to deteriorate rapidly. In almost all examples the pigment is heavily degraded, resulting in a change of colour and loss of modelling. In some cases Seghers used the dead colouring to create very subtle colour effects. This becomes clear when comparing the unfinished iris on the verso of the Fitzwilliam Vase of Flowers with a completed example in the RCT cartouche (figures 12 and 13). In the first stage Seghers indicated the petals that catch the light in white, and placed a diffuse pink blotch in the centre of the flower. In the final result the pink is barely visible but still gives an extra dimension to the iris. The petals placed in the shade are painted directly on top of the dark background. Seghers used the underlying grey colour skilfully to create a convincing three-dimensional effect. The flower was painted wet-in-wet using delicate brushstrokes which gives it an organic quality that echoes the work of his teacher, Jan Brueghel the Elder. Samples taken from the Fitzwilliam flower vase reveal that most passages were built up with no more than two paint layers. The roses were modelled by

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Figure 10. Detail of A Cartouche Embellished with a Garland of Flowers (figure 2): purple flower in the bottom right bouquet.

Figure 11. Detail of A Cartouche Embellished with a Garland of Flowers (figure 2): the infrared reflectograph shows drying cracks in a purple area.

placing a dark pink glaze on top of the bright pink dead colouring (figure 14). The top layer contains mainly lake pigments and some red lead particles.43 While the glaze was still wet, the artist defined the petals and shape of the flowers with pink and white paint. The delicate brushstrokes follow the shape of the petals, suggesting volume. A similar approach can be seen in the red flowers where a semi-transparent purple glaze has been applied on top of the bright red dead colouring (figure 15) in


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Figure 14. Cross-section from the central pink rose in A Vase of Flowers, recto (figure 3): grey ground layer (a), followed by the pink dead colouring (b). The white highlight (c) was added wet-in-wet above a red lake layer.

Figure 15. Cross-section from the central red flower in A Vase of Flowers, recto (figure 3): grey ground layer (a), followed by a bright orange-red dead colouring (b). A thick lake layer also shows particles of ultramarine (c).

Figure 12. Detail of A Vase of Flowers, verso (figure 9): iris in the dead-colouring stage in the top left corner of the bouquet.

order to achieve a deep red colour while also defining the shape of the flowers. The top layer contains mainly red lakes, ultramarine blue, some brown earth pigments and a little lead white.44 The pink and red dead colouring also serves as a basis for the variety of tulips the artist has portrayed in his paintings. The red-purple flamed specimen in the Fitzwilliam Vase of Flowers was painted wetin-wet on top of a bright pink underlayer. Flowing strokes of red lake animate the surface, sometimes mixed with coarse particles of ultramarine blue. This costly pigment was most appropriate for the depiction of precious tulips, the most valuable being the purple-flamed ‘Viceroy’. The artist used the dark background colour to his advantage when depicting tulips (figure 16). He applied grey paint at the shadow side, next to the egg-shaped red dead colouring. The semi-transparent paint allows the underlying dark colour of the background to shimmer through. The adjacent bright red underlayer provides a basis for the sunlit side of the flower. Seghers painted the red flame pattern first, before covering areas of the underlayer with more opaque white paint. The colourful patterns on the tulips seem to have been painted freehand, nevertheless the purple bands on the tulip in the Vase of Flowers are almost identical to a specimen in the RCT cartouche. In contrast to the big roses and colourful tulips, most of the yellow flowers in Seghers’ work have

Figure 13. Detail of A Cartouche Embellished with a Garland of Flowers (figure 2): completed iris in the top right corner of the cartouche.

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Figure 18. Detail of A Vase of Flowers, recto (figure 3): the iris in the top left corner looks dull and formless due to degradation of orpiment yellow.

Figure 16. Detail of A Cartouche Embellished with a Garland of Flowers (figure 2): red oval-shaped dead colouring shimmering through the tulip in the top right corner of the cartouche.

Figure 17. Cross-section from the iris in the top left of A Vase of Flowers, recto (figure 3): grey ground layer (a), followed by yellow dead colouring (b). The top of the final paint layer (c) has turned brown but some larger particles have preserved their yellow colour.

Figure 19. Jan Brueghel the Elder, Still Life with Flowers and Insects, c.1607–08, oil on panel 55.9 × 41.9 cm. Richard Green Gallery, London. Image courtesy of Richard Green Gallery, London.

a rather formless and dull appearance due to the presence of heavily degraded orpiment. Crosssections show how the top layer of the paint film has turned brown, while at the bottom the bright yellow colour has been preserved (figure 17). Small red pigment particles that can be seen in the matrix are somewhat unusual as artists’ manuals at the time discouraged mixing orpiment with any other pigments.45 As de Mayerne noted: ‘one uses orpiment, which is the most beautiful yellow one can have, but ... mixed with all the other colours it will kill them’.46 The sulphides released by the pigment can react with other pigments and change

their properties and appearance. The iris in the top left corner of the Vase of Flowers for example must have looked bright yellow (figure 18). Seghers’ teacher, Jan Brueghel the Elder, depicted the same species on many occasions, but used the more stable lead-tin yellow rather than orpiment (figure 19).47 Macro X-ray fluorescence (Ma-XRF) scanning of the iris in Seghers’ Vase of Flowers makes it possible to visualise the now lost modelling of

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Figure 20. Macro X-ray fluorescence (Ma-XRF) scanning (As-k) of A Vase of Flowers, recto (figure 18): the white areas reveal the presence of the element arsenic, characteristic for the presence of orpiment yellow.

Flowers were painted with great care (figure 23). Seghers dragged a sharp implement into the wet paint without completely removing the top layer. The small black dots on the wings were created using the same technique, this time uncovering the underlying dark background. Finally he added some extra impasto on the edges of the wings. These details demonstrate the artist’s sensitive and skilful handling of materials.

the flower (figure 20). This analytical technique detects a range of chemical elements, displaying them as a series of black-and-white images.48 The element arsenic, characteristic for the yellow pigment orpiment, appears white in the scan. After finishing the main flowers, Seghers completed the bouquets by adding tusschenbloemen (in between flowers) and greenery49 painted directly on top of the dark background without the help of a coloured underlayer. A mixed green, similar to the green underpaint, was used to depict the stems and leaves. The Ma-XRF images show a high amount of lead-tin yellow in the light green passages while the darkest areas contain some earth pigments (figure 21).50 The artist painted the green sepals underneath the rosebuds first before applying the pink colour in order to prevent the pink from contaminating the green. Seghers added subtle details such as a few dots of red lake in the stems of the roses to enliven the greens (figure 22). In the final stage the artist added the shadows underneath his bouquets and colonised his works with small insects and butterflies. The veins of the white butterfly in the top left corner of the Vase of

Finish and collaborative process On 27 December 1631, in a letter to the secretary of Isabella Clara Eugenia, governess of the Spanish Netherlands, inquiring about a painting he had sent her, Seghers wrote: ‘By God, That you have seen with sound eyes: what is still missing, the flies and little animals, which I will complete during the summer.’51 It seems that the young artist had sent an unfinished work to the court in Brussels, promising to finish it the following year. In the RCT cartouche, there is also no sign of insects or butterflies. It is tempting to believe that the artist could not finish the work because Charles II visited the Low Countries unexpectedly following

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Figure 22. Detail of A Vase of Flowers, recto (figure 3): pink rosebud painted after the sepal was completed with red dots in the green area.

Figure 21. Ma-XRF (Sn-k) of A Vase of Flowers, recto (figure 3): the white areas reveal the presence of the element tin, indicating the pigment lead-tin yellow.

the beheading of his father. Nevertheless, there are other examples where insects were never added and in general Seghers was sparse in depicting them. At present, the RCT cartouche revolves around a grey, blank space. Like many of Seghers’ works, a central image was never added. By the midseventeenth century, the interaction between the devotional image in the middle and the surrounding flowers diminished. On some occasions Seghers modified the flowers to fit a certain iconography, such as the depiction of orange blossom and orange lilies around the portrait of stadholder Frederik-Hendrik of Orange.52 Often the central image is overshadowed by the overwhelming and colourful floral garlands. In many cases a trompel’oeil bas-relief was painted in or a sculpture was depicted protruding out of a niche. Some of the best grisailles were conceived by the Antwerp artist Erasmus Quellinus the Younger who, as a descendant of a renowned family of sculptors, might have used their works as models. Many of the colourful Madonna and Child scenes in Seghers’ garlands were painted by Cornelis Schut. He placed the Virgin against a dark grey background leaning forward, showing the Christ Child. Both Quellinus and Schut collaborated with other flower painters such as Jan Philip van Thielen and Jan van Kessel the Elder. In these works, the artist painting the

Figure 23. Detail of A Vase of Flowers, recto (figure 3): scratched lines in the wings of the white butterfly revealing the dark colour of the background.

flowers seems to have taken the initiative and coordinated the collaborative project. A third party is likely to have contributed to Seghers’ works as the author of the bas-reliefs with scrollwork on which the flowers hang. These grisailles vary in their conception and style and it is more than likely that different artists were involved. Some grisailles with distinctive motifs occur in the works of different flower painters, suggesting that they collaborated with the same grisaille artists.53 In seventeenth-century Antwerp, collaboration between specialised artists was common practice. The best example is the highly productive studio of Peter Paul Rubens, who employed specialists for the depiction of animals, fruits and even battle scenes. Productive studios also employed studio assistants or external ateliers to copy popular compositions.54 Seghers’ followers Alongside the Vase of Flowers, two other paintings from the Fitzwilliam Museum were subjected

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Figure 24. Follower of Daniël Seghers, Festoon of Flowers (left), second half of the seventeenth century, oil on canvas, 36 × 40 cm: after conservation treatment. The Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge © Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.

Figure 27. Detail of Festoon of Flowers (right) (figure 25): red oval-shaped dead colouring shimmering through the tulip.

to technical examination to assess their attributions.55 These small festoons were once considered the work of the Spanish artist Juan Fernández el Labrador but more recently they were attributed to Daniël Seghers (figures 24 and 25). The Antwerp artist Jan van Kessel the Elder, a contemporary of Seghers and a grandson of Jan Brueghel the Elder, has also been suggested. The two flower arrangements used to be part of a larger cartouche, similar to that in the RCT. The IRR revealed that the grisaille bas-relief was overpainted when the fragments were cut out (figure 26).56 The rocaille shapes in this cartouche are quite unusual but resemble the grisaille in a painting at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, which has always been considered the work of Daniël Seghers since it entered the collection of Archduke Leopold Willem, governor of the Spanish Netherlands.57 The painting technique corresponds with Seghers’ working methods and materials. A light grey imprimatura applied on top of the chalk ground consists mainly of lead white and charcoal black. An IRR shows the dead colouring. The most important flowers were positioned in abstract, brightly coloured shapes. Subsequently the wreath was indicated with green paint, probably painted wet-in-wet at the same time as the flowers. The IRR reveals that the grisaille does not continue underneath the inlay and was painted

Figure 25. Follower of Daniël Seghers, Festoon of Flowers (right), second half of the seventeenth century, oil on canvas, 36 × 40 cm: before conservation treatment. The Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge © Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.

Figure 26. Follower of Daniël Seghers, Festoon of Flowers (right) (figure 25): infrared reflectograph showing scrollwork beneath the non-original overpaint.

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after the dead colouring was finished, similar to the methodology observed in the RCT cartouche (figure 27). The pigments and pigment mixtures used in the festoons are also consistent with those found in other works by Seghers. The dead colouring underneath the tulips contains vermilion, red lead and a small amount of red lake pigments (figure 28).58 A cross-section taken from the rose in Festoon of Flowers (right) shows a pink underlayer consisting of the same pigment mixture as the roses in Seghers’ flower vase (figure 29). The flower was modelled with two separate layers of pink paint: the top layers contain red lake, lead white, red lead, a black pigment and probably a small amount of ultramarine blue. The layers are remarkably thin in comparison to the underlying dead colouring. The greens were obtained by mixing azurite and lead-tin yellow, similar to the results found in the Vase of Flowers. Although a green glaze seems to sit on top of this layer, no copper was identified in this area with scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive X-ray (SEM-EDX) analysis. Beside the similarities, there are also aspects of Seghers’ technique that do not seem to occur in these festoons. The rosebuds for example are skilfully painted but do not have the subtle red dots seen in the Vase of Flowers (figure 30). The paint handling appears a little stiffer and the brushstrokes are less fluent, as is clear when comparing the red-flamed tulips. The opened tulip in one of the festoons is also an uncommon feature as Seghers generally seems to have preferred closed specimens. The two fragments, Festoon of Flowers (left and right), examined at the Hamilton Kerr Institute studios can be placed firmly in the workshop practices of Antwerp flower painters during the mid-seventeenth century. Nevertheless it is difficult to distinguish a specific hand when considering the technical evidence in isolation. The collaborative nature of these paintings makes identification of unsigned works even more challenging. It is not clear how artists acquired working methods introduced by Seghers – few students are known to have studied in his studio and most of these came from outside Antwerp. Perhaps Seghers’ studio in the Professenhuis was more accessible than might be expected and historic documents confirm that he was in contact with other artists in the city. Jan van Kessel the Elder, for example, benefited from Seghers’ connections to establish his reputation in Spain. Van Kessel was the grandson of Seghers’ teacher, Jan Brueghel the Elder, and could have been introduced to him through Brueghel’s family. Seghers’ style became a model for many Antwerp artists in the second decade of the seventeenth century – even Jan Brueghel the Younger, who painted in his father’s manner, adopted the new style in the 1640s.

Figure 28. Cross-section taken from the red flower at the bottom of Festoon of Flowers (left) (figure 24): chalk ground (a) followed by a bright orange-red dead colouring (b) and purple paint layer (c).

Figure 29. Cross-section taken from the pink rose in Festoon of Flowers (right) (figure 25): chalk ground (a) followed by a grey imprimatura (b) and pink dead colouring (c), finished with two pink paint layers (d).

Figure 30. Detail of Festoon of Flowers (right) (figure 25): the sepal of the rosebud shows no red dots as seen in figure 22.

Although technical examination provides an insight into the technique and methodology of the painter, there is still a great level of connoisseurship involved in the identification of these works. The examined flower pieces were painted around the same period by a small community of artists using

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similar materials and techniques. Interpretation of technical analysis therefore has to be done with great care and an awareness of the context in which these paintings were executed. Conclusion Technical examination of the Vase of Flowers and Cartouche Embellished with a Garland of Flowers, two closely related works by Daniël Seghers, has provided an insight into the techniques and working practice of one of the most influential flower painters of the seventeenth century. The systematic approach towards the planning and execution of his flower pieces is striking: laying in the composition with an almost abstract dead colouring in order to provide a base tone for the following paint layers. The final execution of the flowers is surprisingly straightforward, often painted wet-in-wet and seldom built up with more than one paint layer. The collaborative nature of his garlands or cartouches becomes clear when considering the technical evidence. Seghers painted the dead colouring for the flowers before another artist painted the grisaille scrollwork. This required planning and a clear view on how the final result should look. The lack of sketches and drawings attributed to the artist makes it difficult to understand how he developed his compositions. The repetition of certain flowers and flower arrangements over a period of a few years suggests that models – oil sketches, drawings or watercolours – must have been kept in the artist’s studio. The examined works can be placed in the late 1640s when the artist had already established his signature style. The dramatic, vibrant flower pieces by Seghers differ stylistically and technically from the works of his teacher, Jan Brueghel the Elder. The reasons for this change in style and methodology are not obvious, but could be related to the artist’s stay in Rome. From the 1640s onwards Seghers’ style was adopted by many artists in his immediate environment. Although further technical research is required, it seems that they emulated his techniques and methods, especially the use of an almost abstract dead colouring. It became a standard approach, mentioned in major artists’ manuals such as de Lairesse’s Groot schilderboek. The methodology introduced by the Jesuit artist would be employed by flower painters until the end of the seventeenth century.59 Seghers’ ingenuity and technical skills were admired and praised during his lifetime – even today the observer is astonished as to how the artist could render nature so convincingly in paint. Acknowledgements

I would like to thank Jane Munro at the Fitzwilliam Museum for allowing the analysis of flower paintings in its collection and Rosanna da Sancha, Katelyn Reeves and Michael Field of the Royal Collection Trust for

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providing access to its garland painting by Seghers. Special thanks are extended to Dr Spike Bucklow who conducted the SEM-EDX analysis, Dr Lucy Wrapson and Christine Slottved Kimbriel for the pXRF analysis and other supervisors at the Hamilton Kerr Institute: Rupert Featherstone, Chris Titmus and Allan Barker. I am grateful to Stijn Legrand from the University of Antwerp who conducted the scanning macro-XRF analysis. I would also like to thank the Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Antwerp and the Mauritshuis, The Hague for providing access to some of their paintings. The expertise of the following conservators and scholars has been of great help: Carol Pottasch (Mauritshuis), Dr Nico Van Hout (Royal Museum of Fine Arts (KMSKA) Antwerp), Fred G. Meijer (Netherlands Institute for Art History (RKD) The Hague), Dr Gerlinde Gruber (Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna) and Dr Melanie E. Gifford (National Gallery of Art, Washington DC).

Notes

1. J. Van Den Vondel and H.J.P.H. Allard, Bijschrift voor Daniel Segher: fenix der bloemschilders, Vondel’s gedichten op de Societeit van Jesus, s’Hertogenbosch 1868, p. 54. 2. Daniël Seghers, A Vase of Flowers, oil on copper, 48 × 35 cm, Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, Inv. PD.42-1975. 3. C. Huygens: Heylighe Daghen, AD DANIELEM SEGHERUM PRAESTANTISSIMUM FLORUM PICTOREM, Amsterdam 1645. 4. Constantijn Huygens (The Hague 1596–1687) Dutch poet, diplomat and courtier. Secretary to Prince Frederik Henry of Orange and later Prince William II of Orange. 5. J.R. Martin, A Portrait of Rubens by Daniel Seghers: Record of the Art Museum, vol. 17, no.1, Princeton 1958, p. 3. 6. W. Couvreur, Daniel Seghers’ inventaris van door hem geschilderde bloemstukken, Gentse bijdragen tot de kunstgeschiedenis en de oudheidkunde, vol. 20, Ghent 1967, p. 87. 7. Couvreur 1967 (note 6), p. 93. 8. J. Denucé, Brieven en documenten betreffend Jan Breughel I en II, Antwerp 1934, p. 141. 9. M-L. Hairs and F. Dominique, The Flemish Flower Painters of the XVIIth Century, Brussels 1988, p. 121. 10. J. O’Malley, The Jesuits II: Cultures, Sciences, and the Arts, 1540–1773, Toronto 2006, p. 114. 11. S. Merriam, Seventeenth-century Flemish Garland Paintings: Still Life, Vision, and the Devotional Image, Farnham 2012, pp. 4–5. 12. P. van der Ploeg and C. Vermeeren (eds), Vorstelijk verzameld. De kunstcollectie van Frederik Hendrik en Amalia, Den Haag 1997, cat. 35. 13. Anonymous, Nieuwen verlichter der konst-schilders, vernissers, vergulders en marmelaers, Ghent 1777, p. 357. 14. Couvreur 1967 (note 6), p. 88. 15. See note 4. 16. Daniël Seghers, A Cartouche Embellished with a Garland of Flowers, oil on copper, 87 × 60.7 cm, Royal Collection Trust, RCIN 405617. 17. Hairs and Dominique 1988 (note 9), p. 122. 18. Couvreur 1967 (note 6), p. 119: ‘Cataloge van de Bloemstukken, die ik self met mijn hand heb geschildert en voor wie?’. 19. Cat. 190: ‘een klijn blom-glasken voor Sr verhulst klerk van den Secretaris Huijgens’. Samuel Hulst


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(1596–1687) possibly related to the auction on 6 August 1722, no. 7: A catalogue of Pictures by the Best Italian, French, Flemish and Dutch Masters; collected by the late William Van Hulst, Esq; at his late dwelling-house at Whitehall (Fitzwilliam Museum bequest 1975 Broughton. Bought from Levine and Mosley in 1947). 20. Cat. (no. unknown): Daniël Seghers and Erasmus Quellinus II (c.1645), oil on panel 82 × 56 cm or 80 × 55 cm. Private collection. 21. Cat. 198: Daniël Seghers and Erasmus Quellinus II (1645–50), copper, 86 × 62 cm. Braunschweig: Herzog Anton Ulrich-Museum, Inv./cat.nr 111. 22. Cat. 127? Daniël Seghers (1640–45), oil on canvas 129 × 98.5 cm. Naples, Museo e Gallerie Nazionali di Capodimonte, Inv. Q173. Cat. 178: Daniël Seghers and Erasmus Quellinus II (1647), canvas, 129 × 95 cm. Berlin, Staatliche Museen, Inv. 978209-211. Three works for Frederik Willem I van Brandenburg, Cat. 209–211 Daniël Seghers (1650–55), three works for Frederik Willem I van Brandenburg, 3 × copper 85.5 × 64.5 cm. Dresden, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen. 23. Anonymous 1777 (note 13), p. 263: ‘Vervolgens, als hy eenige Schilderyen wilde maeken, ging hy tot zyne studien, van de welke hy eene groote vergaederinge hadde: dezen zelven toegang heeft aen zynen zoon.’ 24. Couvreur 1967 (note 6), p. 111: ‘van alle saisoenen bloemen’. 25. S. Murray and K. Groen, ‘Four early Dutch flower paintings examined with references to Crispijn van de Passe’s Den Blom-Hof’, Hamilton Kerr Institute Bulletin, vol. 2, 1994, pp. 6–20. 26. G. de Lairesse, Het groot schilderboek, Amsterdam 1707, p. 357: ‘Dient voor alle dingen noodzaakelyk een bloemtuin te hebben, en de zelve naarstig te bouwen, op dat hy, als de tyd van ‘t jaar zulks toelaat, altyd schoone en uitgeleezene bloemen moge verkrygen: want hoewel het modelleeren een groot hulpmiddel is om, wanneer het winter, en het leven niet meer te bekomen is, zich in zyne oeffening te konnen voortzetten, kan echter niemand zonder het leven onmogelyk tot die volkomenheid geraaken. Die een vaste en vlugge hand in ‘t tekenen heeft, en de waterverwen wel weet te gebruiken, heeft een dubbeld voordeel, konnende met’er tyd een schat van schoone gemodelleerde bloemen by een vergaderen, die van veele Konstlievenden gezogt, wel betaald, en in groote waarde gehouden worden.’ 27. H.J. Allard, Broeder Daniël Seghers, Amsterdam 1869, p. 151: ‘collection P. Wouters, canon in the church of Lier (Flanders): collection de fleures, les plus belles et les plus rares du temps, peintres à gouche d’après nature, par le fameux Daniël Seghers, sur 105 feilles en trav., dont 48 feuilles de velin. Il y a 178 diff. Tulips sur 86 feuilles, avec le nom de chacune; écrit à main, par l’artiste’. 28. Daniël Seghers and Conzales Coques, Portrait of a Man in a Flower Garland, oil on copper, 82.7 × 58 cm, Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Antwerp, Inv. 803. 29. I. Horovitz, ‘The materials and techniques of European paintings on copper supports’, in M. Komanecky (ed.), Copper as Canvas: Two Centuries of Masterpiece Paintings on Copper, 1575–1775, Oxford 1999, p. 68. 30. Allard 1869 (note 27), p. 133: ‘Een koperen paneel ter lengte van 3 voet en gevat in een ebbenhouten lijst.’ 31. Horovitz 1999 (note 29), p. 68. 32. Pigment analysis using SEM-EDX.

33. De Lairesse 1707 (note 26), p. 364: ‘Droog zynde, zal men de bloemen daar op schikken, de voornaamste eerst, elk op haare plaats, en de zelve met een enkele koleur aanleggen, rood, blaauw, of geel, van zodanig een tint dat men bekwaamelyk hunne dag en schaduwe na het leven, of de modellen, daar op kan schilderen.’ 34. Pigment analysis using SEM-EDX. 35. Murray and Groen 1994 (note 25), p. 14. 36. Pigment analysis using SEM-EDX. 37. S. van Hoogstraten, Inleyding tot de hooge schoole der schilderkonst: anders de zichtbaere werelt, Rotterdam 1678, p. 221: ‘ik wenschte wel, dat wy zoo wel het groen, als het Rood of Geel, tot onzen wil hadden. Terra verde is te zwak, en spaens groen te wreed, en d’assen t’onbestandig. Het berggroen is by ouden tijden tot het aensmeeren van kladderyen gebruikt geweest’. 38. M. Witlox, Schildertechniek en huidige toestand: Daniel Seghers bloemen cartouche met mariabeeld. Mauritshuis inv.256, unpublished thesis, SRAL 1999–2000, p. 2. 39. For more info see the section ‘Finish and collaborative process’. 40. De Lairesse 1707 (note 26), p. 357: ‘Verders dient’er een goede weetenschap van de verwen by te weezen, te weeten die vast en bestendig zyn: waar na men ook noch zorgvuldiglyk acht moet geeven om de natuur der bloemen te onderzoeken en te handelen.’ 41. Visual examination. 42. Also observed in other works: see note 28. 43. Pigment analysis using SEM-EDX. 44. Pigment analysis using SEM-EDX. 45. Also observed in Witlox 1999–2000 (note 38). 46. M. van Eikema Hommes, ‘Painters’ methods to prevent colour changes described in sixteenth to early eighteenth century sources on oil painting techniques’, in E. Hermens (ed.), Looking through Paintings: The Study of Painting Techniques and Materials in Support of Art Historical Research, London 1998, p. 114. 47. A. Wallert, Still Life: Techniques and Style: An Examination of Paintings from the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam 1999, p. 16. 48. M. Alfred, K. Janssens, J. Dik et al., ‘Optimization of mobile scanning macro-XRF systems for the in situ investigation of historical paintings’, Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, vol. 26, no. 5, 2011, pp. 899–909. 49. De Lairesse 1707 (note 26), p. 364. 50. Ma-XRF (Sn-k and Fe-k): high amount of tin visible in light green areas, and iron in the dark passages 51. Allard 1869 (note 27), pp. 127–28: ‘God sy ghelooft, dat U.L. die heft moghen besien met ghesonden ooghen: hetgeen daeraen manckeert, te weeten de vlighen en de beestiens, sal ick met den somer voldoen.’ 52. Daniël Seghers, Portrait of Stadholder-King William III (1650–1702) surrounded by a Garland of Flowers, oil on canvas, 122.5 × 107 cm, Mauritshuis, The Hague, Inv. 257. 53. This aspect of flower garlands has not yet been the subject of study. 54. Denucé 1934 (note 8), p. 46. 55. Follower of Daniël Seghers, two Festoons of Flowers, oil on canvas, 36 × 40 cm, Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, Inv. 301 and 307. 56. The paintings had been cut down before they were acquired by the Fitzwilliam Museum in 1834.

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57. Daniël Seghers, Cartouche with the Portrait of an Unknown Lady, oil on panel, 76 × 58 cm, Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna, Inv. GG 9105. 58. Pigment analysis using SEM-EDX. 59. S. Van Dorst, ‘Brueghel, Seghers en de Heem: De techniek van bloemschilders uit het zeventiende-eeuwse Antwerpen’, in S. Van Dorst and N. Van Hout (eds), Power Flower: bloemstillevens in de Nederlanden, Antwerp 2015, pp. 51–62.

Author Sven Van Dorst graduated magna cum laude at the Artesis University College Antwerp (Belgium) in 2012, majoring in Painting Conservation and Restoration. The following two years he worked on several projects at the Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Antwerp and as a freelance conservator and painter. He commenced a two-year postgraduate internship at the Hamilton Kerr Institute in 2014 working on several Dutch and Flemish paintings by Rubens, de Fromantiou, Wouwerman and van de Cappelle, as well as an Italian cassone and a Quattrocento panel painting. Recently he published an article on the technique of Antwerp flower painters for the catalogue of the exhibition Power Flower: Floral Still Life in the Netherlands at the Antwerp Rockoxhuis Museum. The author has previously contributed articles to Openbaar Kunstbezit Vlaanderen (OKV), CeROArt and the BRK/ APROA Bulletin.

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Judgement and speculation: an appraisal of the Middle Temple’s Judgement of Solomon CHRISTINE BRAYBROOK Abstract The Judgement of Solomon, painted in Britain in the late sixteenth century by an unknown AngloFlemish artist, belongs to the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, London. Its subject is highly appropriate to the Inns of Court and the subject of jurisdiction in early modern England. Conservation treatment and technical study revealed supposed artist’s initials and the reworking of the figure of King Solomon during the mid-seventeenth century. This article aims to add to recent research and disseminate discoveries made during the conservation of The Judgement of Solomon, using technical analysis and visual observations to contextualise these findings with further examples of Tudor paintings and contemporary events at the Middle Temple during the late sixteenth century.

Figure 1. Unknown Anglo-Netherlandish artist, The Judgement of Solomon, c.1586–1602, oil on oak panel, 188 × 165 cm: after conservation treatment. The Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, London. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

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Figure 2. The Judgement of Solomon, full verso: before treatment. Six non-original vertical wooden battens applied over the board joins replace the original crossgrain battens (removed).

Introduction The Judgement of Solomon underwent conservation treatment at the Hamilton Kerr Institute (HKI) during 2011–12 (figure 1). The large panel (188 × 165 cm) is a rare example of a biblical narrative painting of this date belonging to a British collection, the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, London. The painting depicts the biblical narrative of the Judgement of Solomon whereby Solomon came to judge the rightful mother of a living child.1 The painting, by an unknown artist, appears Anglo-Flemish in style and is thought to be the work of a foreign painter working in Britain in the late sixteenth century. The narrative of the painting is relevant to the proceedings at the Inns of Court and, as Bruce Williamson writes, The Judgement of Solomon ‘has been longer in the possession of the society than any other picture’.2 Although no record of the painting’s acquisition has been found, it is suggested the painting was commissioned for the Middle Temple, however as Tarnya Cooper points out, no evidence has been found either for or against this argument.3 While at the HKI studios the painting underwent conservation and restoration treatment including cleaning and minor structural treatment. Technical analysis was completed to better understand the artist’s technique, use of materials and past alterations which had occurred during the painting’s history. Findings during conservation The oak panel (figure 2) is composed of seven vertically joined boards and is of its original dimensions and thickness. All boards are of a good radial cut

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with vertical grain. The seven boards are buttjoined with X-radiographs providing no evidence of joining dowels. The reverse of the panel reveals reserves from two sets of two cross-grain horizontal battens spanning the full width of the painting. These battens were identified as being from the original construction owing to the presence of wooden pegs or dowel heads, visible on the front of the panel, penetrating its full thickness. The majority of the pegs have been lost, however two surviving dowels exhibit the remnants of original ground and paint, confirming their originality. Although these original cross-grain battens were removed in a historic restoration treatment, the panel has escaped being thinned and cradled, having had relatively sympathetic historic structural treatment including the application of six vertical battens along the board joins and button blocks over weak joins. Dendrochronology completed on all seven boards concluded that the panel is derived from five trees from the eastern Baltic region. The trees were certainly still growing in 1578 and are likely to have been felled between c.1586 and c.1602. These results indicate that The Judgement of Solomon can be ‘no earlier than c.1586, and is likely to pre-date 1602’, placing the painting within the latter part of Elizabeth I’s reign.4 The panel has a double white ground application. The first applied lower ground layer is chalk bound in glue, which was found to be watersensitive, and the second ground layer is largely lead white and is probably oil-bound. Sitting above the ground is a thin indiscriminate medium-rich brown layer with very sparse particles.5 The layer was found to fluoresce slightly under ultraviolet light, suggesting the inclusion of a natural resin. It is presumed that the layer was more transparent at the time of application, but has since darkened. It was probably applied as a method of sealing the lower ground layers prior to paint application. Above the medium-rich brown layer is a light grey imprimatura applied in a brushy fashion with visible wide brushstrokes.6 This layer can be seen through the final paint layer in some locations in normal light but is made clearer in infrared (IR) and X-radiography (figure 3).7 A comparable example of a painting also with a brushy imprimatura of the same period is the Portrait of King Edward IV of the Hornby Castle set of early Kings and Queens.8 The underdrawing for The Judgement of Solomon, sitting above the imprimatura, is predominantly executed in a fluid red paint (figure 4) (presumed to be red lake on aesthetic/visual grounds), with only localised sections completed in a carbon-based material and visible in the infrared reflectograph (IRR) (figure 5). Underdrawing in red was also found in several paintings examined during the ‘Making Art in Tudor Britain’ research project.9 Original paint layers are thinly painted and generally composed of just two or three layers. Covering vast areas of original paint was a widespread,


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Figure 4. The red underdrawing is seen outlining the figure’s nose, cheek and eye.

Figure 3. Infrared reflectograph detail revealing the brushy application of the light grey imprimatura.

non-original, brown glaze coating which was removed during cleaning to reveal numerous areas of damaged original paint, most probably from historic cleaning treatments. Localised regions of green paint passages were found to be sensitive to fairly low polarity solvents.10 Medium analysis completed on a sample taken from an area of sensitive green paint on the underskirt of the ‘true mother’ using gas chromatography-mass spectroscopy (GC-MS) identified the medium as linseed oil (possibly partially heat-bodied). The sample also revealed peaks indicative of the addition of coniferous resin, probably pine resin (rosin).11 Rosin is an inexpensive, readily available resin with poor drying qualities that can improve paint handling. Rosin added to a heat-bodied linseed oil binding medium has been commonly identified as an additive in various black samples of paint from the same period, analysed using GC-MS.12 Resins were also found to be commonly added to glazes, such as copper-based glazes.13 As well as improved handling, pine resin is said to improve the gloss, transparency, richness and saturation of a paint layer.14 The green in The Judgement of Solomon is an opaque pigment mixture consisting of azurite, lead white, yellow and red ochre, realgar and/or orpiment, with traces of alum and massicot. The identification of alum indicates the presence of a lake pigment in the mixture.15 It could be speculated that by adding rosin to the oil medium, the handling properties of these coarse pigments in oil would be improved. No further medium analysis was completed, but owing to the sensitivity of this green

Figure 5. Infrared reflectograph detail reveals evidence of the limited use of a carbon-based underdrawing.

pigment mixture, and similar sensitivity in some areas of black, it is assumed the resin is localised and was therefore utilised to affect paint handling. Cross-section samples were taken from further locations of solvent-sensitive green paint, which all appeared comparable to the pigment mixture identified above: azurite, ochres, lead white and further localised yellow particles suspected as realgar and/ or massicot and/or orpiment and/or lead tin yellow (figure 6).16 Green pigment mixes of azurite mixed with lead-tin yellow or yellow ochre were frequently used in painting in Britain in the sixteenth century.17

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Figure 6. The lower ‘green’ pigmented (solvent-sensitive) layer (a) was found to be a mixed green composed of azurite, ochres, lead white and further localised yellow particles suspected to be realgar and/or massicot and/ or orpiment and/or lead-tin yellow. The upper yellow pigmented (solvent-sensitive) layer (b) is composed of lead white, lead-tin yellow and orpiment (or realgar and/ or massicot). Sandwiched between these pigmented layers is an ‘oiling out’ layer (c).

Figure 7. Gold jewellery and clothing embellishment is imitated using lead-tin yellow and yellow ochre.

Figure 9. The original sceptre is disguised with brown overpaint (green arrow). Two later (non-original) sceptre positions are also visible (blue and red arrows).

As with much of the green paint, the yellow highlights defining drapery folds on the ‘false mother’s’ underskirt were also susceptible to solvent application: the paint appeared granular and large particles were observed in cross-section (figure 6). The cross-section revealed the presence of an isolating oiling-out layer separating the lower blue/green of the drapery and the upper yellow highlight. Scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive X-ray (SEM-EDX) analysis established that the elemental content contains a large amount of lead compared to tin, along with small amounts of arsenic, copper and iron (also present were aluminium, silicon, chloride and calcium). These elements and their ratios suggest the pigment content of the upper yellow layer as a mixture of lead white, lead-tin yellow and orpiment (or realgar and/or massicot).18 Considering its expense and tendency to degrade, orpiment is an unusual pigment choice and not commonly found in paintings of the period.19 The lower layer was confirmed as azurite owing to the strong presence of copper, mixed with earths giving a reading for iron.

Figure 8. King Solomon’s gilt throne is decorated using a brown glaze to suggest a highly embellished and ornate throne with a scalloped alcove where he sits.

In the case of The Judgement of Solomon, the artist has also added trace amounts of realgar and/or massicot, feasibly to enhance the colour.

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Figure 10. The Judgement of Solomon: infrared reflectograph.

Beneath the upper green of the ‘mother’s’ underskirt is a red/pink underlayer, identified as red lake using polarised light microscopy (PLM), which gives the appearance of a shot-silk type fabric. This is a similar layering technique to that of William Larkin, who would apply a pink underlayer beneath a blue azurite layer, possibly to suggest the use of the expensive blue pigment, ultramarine, but whether this applies to the artist of The Judgement of Solomon is not fully clear.20 By the end of the late sixteenth century, gilding was less commonly used in painting – more prevalent was the Netherlandish tradition of fictive gold, depicted using yellow pigments. Gold is represented in The Judgement of Solomon using both gold leaf

and paint highlights to give a shimmering gold effect. Only the gold of King Solomon’s throne and crown use genuine gold leaf indicative of supremacy and status – elsewhere in the painting gold is imitated using lead-tin yellow and yellow ochre pigment to imply gold jewellery and clothing embellishment (figure 7). The gilt throne is finely decorated using a brown glaze to suggest a highly embellished and ornate throne with a scalloped alcove where the king sits (figure 8). Later reworking of the painting Technical examination and observations during cleaning revealed a significant intervention. The central figure of King Solomon and the two Latin

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Figure 11. Infrared reflectograph (upper right images) and X-radiograph (lower right images) details of King Solomon revealing the original positioning of his proper right arm, painted crossing over onto his lap. His original sceptre is visible, held by his right hand and resting on his shoulder. A change in head position is also made clear with visible facial features showing the king glancing down to his right. A suggestion of a foot position and drapery folds are also implied. The overlaid yellow and red outlines on the far right images show what is visible with infrared and X-radiography respectively. The upper far left image is a normal light detail of King Solomon (after treatment) for comparison.

scripts were reworked by another hand after the painting’s original completion. Visible in normal light, but more prominent in raking light, is the changed position of the king’s sceptre, originally positioned over his right shoulder. The current depicted positioning is uncertain, with two versions detectable: one shorter sceptre held in his right hand, along with a second longer one. A brown glaze overpaint which was used to disguise the original sceptre was also utilised for the newly painted sceptres (figure 9). A test revealed that the original sceptre was gilt with bright glimmering gold leaf.

The whole painting was imaged using IRR and a detail of the king also imaged with X-radiography, confirming the reworking intervention (figure 10). It is evident that King Solomon’s original right arm was painted crossing over into his lap and had been worked up to a finished level, with detail and drapery folds visible in IR (figure 11). A crosssection (figure 12) taken from the reworked right arm revealed a multiple layer build-up including the grey imprimatura, followed by three original paint layers, the first composed of lead white, vermilion and red lake with the second and third of vermilion and red lake. Above this were further layers of

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in normal light (figure 13). Made visible are eyes, nose, mouth and the suggestion of a moustache and beard. Hesitant positioning of the king’s chin by the artist is detected when viewed in IR with numerous dark markings suggestive of the artist’s pentimenti and reworking during the original composition. A cross-section taken from King Solomon’s neck clearly shows the later reworking (figure 14). Evident are original paint layers sitting above the grey imprimatur: firstly a warm orange-coloured layer, comprising a range of pigments including lead white, vine black, earths and red lake, followed by two thin warm grey modelling layers composed of lead white, vine black and earth. Above sit two thickly applied dense lead white layers with sparsely scattered vermilion particles. Sadly, the previous appearance of the king’s hairstyle and crown is indistinguishable with IR and X-radiography.21 However, the bottom hem of his gown is somewhat visible in IR: he was originally painted wearing a long gown reaching to his feet, which is also suggested in X-radiography (figure 11). A cross-section sample (figure 15) from the edge of his non-original right sandal reveals the layer structure: original lower red layers from his longer gown, followed by the later applied brown paint layers of his sandal and cushion. The ornate cushion is also part of the reworking. It is unclear from the IRR and X-radiograph what was positioned here originally,

Figure 12. Cross-section sample taken from King Solomon’s reworked right arm. The upper image, taken in normal light, shows the grey imprimatura followed by three original red paint layers. Above sits the non-original paint layers from the reworking that is more evident when examined under ultraviolet fluorescence (lower image).

non-original paint, also composed of vermilion and red lake. This reworking of the king’s face is apparent when viewed with IR and X-radiography; outlines of secondary facial features are distinct, all lying slightly left of his current features seen

Figure 13. Infrared reflectograph (upper right images) and X-radiograph (lower right images) details of King Solomon’s face revealing its original positioning. A change in head position is distinct with multiple facial features visible glancing down to his right. The overlaid yellow and red outlines on the far right images show what is visible with infrared and X-radiography respectively. The upper far left image is a normal light detail of King Solomon’s face (after treatment) for comparison.

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Figure 14. Cross-section sample from King Solomon’s neck taken in normal light. The non-original reworking is apparent above the original scheme.

Figure 15. Cross-section sample from the edge of King Solomon’s right sandal (current scheme). The lower red layers provide further evidence that his gown was originally full length, extending to his feet. The layer build-up of the original layers in this cross-section is similar to the layer structure observed in figure 13.

Figure 16. Cross-section sample from the upper right of King Solomon’s cloak taken in normal light. The cross-section provides evidence of the original layer build-up, including the lower chalk ground layer. The painter predominantly used a pigmented layer of azurite followed by a thin red lake glaze. Above can be seen non-original white detailing and brown paint.

but a small rug or carpet is considered plausible. The king’s cloak was found to have formerly been a vibrant purple colour; distinguishable in crosssection is an azurite, lead white and earth mixture followed by a thin red lake glaze (figure 16).

The two Latin texts at the bottom of the composition, currently explaining the meaning of the scene, were also reworked in the intervention.22 Imaging of the texts with IR and X-radiography was unable to penetrate the upper paint to detect

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what was formerly written (figures 17 and 18). A suggestion of text was visible but unfortunately indecipherable (figure 19). What can be confirmed is that the sizes of the text boxes were originally smaller with a bordered outline. Interpretation of what is revealed in the IR image would suggest that the text was in a non-carbon-based pigment (low absorption of the IR light) and the surround of the text in a carbon-based pigment (high absorption of the IR light). The original text boxes appear to be fragmentary (figure 20), implying that they were either purposefully defaced or a removal was attempted prior to the reworking. The reworked text boxes were first scored into the paint to serve as a guide for the painter with scant regard for the painting’s composition: the executioner’s leg and the baby’s plinth can be found beneath the reworked right-hand text box. The Middle Temple’s archive divulges the earliest known reference to the painting – a receipt for the sum of £7 to James Oliver dated 11 November 1659 for the restoration of The Judgement of Solomon. This receipt affirms the restoration campaign stating: ‘beautifying and repayring the picture of Solomons Judgement’ in 1659.23 It is this costly figure, along with the wording ‘beautifying and repayring’ that compellingly alludes to this restoration as the reworking of King Solomon and the Latin text. An additional receipt for £1 12s 6d, dated 20 October 1699, was paid to Robert Ellis for ‘cleaning and repairing the three Kings Pictures and Solomon’s picture’.24 The far lesser sum paid 30 years later, which covered the costs to clean and repair four large paintings, further implies that the costly figure of £7 would refer to a sizable reworking. The term ‘beautifying’ is itself a curious choice of word, even for mid-seventeenth century Britain. ‘Beautifying’ suggests an enhancement for what already exists as opposed to a significant change or alteration. The painter who reworked King Solomon was, in fact, relatively sympathetic to the original and kept much of the torso and left arm as intended; the painter has cunningly reworked areas of Solomon’s arm and robes, using similar pigments and in places just a thin glaze to disguise the reworking. Less sympathetic was the reworking of his cloak, originally a vibrant purple, as seen in cross-section (figure 16), and the lower section of his body (his sandals and length of gown) which has altered the artist’s original intention. It could be supposed that the alteration took place due to an aversion, possibly by members of the Middle Temple, of the king’s original partial depicted gaze towards the ‘true mother’. Repairing may also point to the reworking of the Latin scripts which look fragmentary. It could be speculated that a dislike of the image by members may have led to an attempted removal of the text which resulted in the need for repair, while at the same time allowing improvements to be made to the king.

Figure 17. Infrared reflectograph detail of the lower left Latin text. The smaller text box outline of the original scheme can be seen beneath the current scheme but unfortunately the original text is illegible.

Figure 18. Infrared reflectograph detail of the lower right Latin text. The smaller original text box outline can be seen beneath the current scheme which extends over the executioner’s leg. Unfortunately the original text is illegible.

Figure 19. Infrared reflectograph detail of the lower right Latin text. Original text beneath the current scheme is suggested in infrared but indecipherable.

Figure 20. Infrared reflectograph detail of the lower left Latin text. Original text boxes appear fragmentary.

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identify a date for the reworking, by another hand from that of the original artist, seemingly a painter or restorer named James Oliver.25 Why the reworking occurred is not established, but can be hypothesised when considering the role of a judge as unbiased and impartial. The authoritative, dominant and central figure of the painting is King Solomon. By reworking the king’s head and hand, the wise king’s judgement is demonstrated as showing both impartial and partial judgement. His gaze is now impartial, looking towards the view of the executioner and not the ‘true mother’ (as originally painted). It is King Solomon’s change of hand gesture that now makes the final and partial judgement – a pointing finger denoting the ‘true mother’ of the living child. The story of the Judgement of Solomon is commonly used as an exemplary case of righteous and impartial judgement, yet it aptly separates judgement and impartiality.26 In the painting of the Judgement of Solomon the king’s original gesture or judgement may have been seen as a partial judgement only demonstrated by a glance over his sceptre, towards the gaze of the ‘true mother’. With the reworking, the king looks the executioner in the eye, giving his initial superficial impartial judgement to split the child into two equal halves. This extracts the ‘true mother’s’ own partiality and exposes the ‘false mother’s’ apathetic emotion. King Solomon rightfully arbitrates and casts his justice by this cautious use of appropriate partial judgement as he points to the ‘true mother’, communicating to the executioner to stop.

Figure 21. Detail of the assumed non-original ‘RK’ initials visible before treatment, centrally located along the bottom edge, measuring approximately 2 × 3 cm.

Who painted The Judgement of Solomon? The painter of The Judgement of Solomon is revealed, to some degree, by the recent cleaning. Visible prior to cleaning were initials reading ‘RK’, centrally located along the bottom edge (figure 21). These somewhat dubious initials are most likely from a later date as their manner of application is rather haphazard and crudely incised, deep into the painting’s structure. Yet during removal of the non-original brown glazed repaint layer, two sets of initials, assumed to be by the original painter, were uncovered. The first are the initials ‘R K’ painted in script lettering in a yellow ochre-type pigment, centrally located along the bottom edge, left of the currently visible inscribed ‘RK’. The initials are extremely faint and only visible under a strong light source (figure 22). The second initial, evident in both normal light and IR, is a small ‘R’ measuring approximately 5 mm², scored into the original paint layer and located to the left of the composition, just above the darker floor tile (figure 23). With the exposure of two, presumed original initials of ‘R’ and ‘R K’ it is very credible that these belong to the artist who originally painted The Judgement of Solomon. The incised initials are probably by a different hand, applied during a later restoration campaign, after the original initials had

Figure 22. Detail of ‘R K’ initials discovered during cleaning, centrally located along the bottom edge to the left of the non-original ‘RK’ initials (seen in figure 21). The upper image is taken in normal light under a strong light source with the initials only just discernible. The initials measure approximately 2.5 × 5 cm. The lower greyscale image is digitally enhanced with the outline of the initials overlaid to improve legibility.

As demonstrated, technical study and imaging provided vital evidence of a reworking intervention of King Solomon and the two Latin scripts. Documentary records support this evidence and

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been covered with overpaint and perhaps partly removed during a cleaning treatment. It has been estimated that less than 30 percent of painted portraits of the Tudor and Elizabethan period survive today, and an even smaller percentage of religious depictions, wall paintings and hangings.27 With this in mind, it makes pinpointing an artist’s identity a nigh-on unattainable challenge: large numbers of artists were working in Britain during this period, a time which saw increased dominance from foreign artists, mainly from the Low Countries, who were highly influential on British art.28 Foreign artists were seen as fashionable, were in high demand from patrons and employed by the court. Use of studio assistants was commonplace, particularly in busy studios – indeed much of The Judgement of Solomon may well be by the hands of numerous assistants. The paint handling of some of the faces appears far more competent compared with that of the drapery and architectural background. Recent studies have offered an insight into the multitude of artists working in Britain during this period.29 When considering the high numbers of artists and the fact that substantial quantities of paintings no longer survive, deciphering the elusive ‘RK’ artist is difficult, however the following identities for the initials ‘RK’ are outlined and discussed below:

Figure 23. Detail of a single ‘R’ initial taken in normal light. The ‘R’ is scored into the original paint and measures approximately 5 × 5 mm.

of £100 at the time of his death.36 A Knuckle is cited in the Vice-Chancellor’s Court records of Cambridge between 1597 and 159937 and again in 1603/4,38 however this is expected to be a relative of Richard Knuckle/Knuckles, probably John Knuckle/Knuckles who died in 1625.39 In 1656, Richard Knuckle is documented in Cambridge University accounts as being paid the total sum of £7 ‘to Knuckles the Limner for renewing Stokys Table, and the pictures’.40

• Richard Kimby: a member of the London Painter-Stainers’ Company who was active in the 1610s. He was employed in 1611 by the Goldsmith’s Company to paint heraldic devices and banners for the Lord Mayor’s Show in London30 and by Sir Edward Dering of Surrenden Dering in Kent in 1626.31 Kimby is an unlikely candidate due to his dates being slightly too late and the lack of documentary evidence linking him to portrait painting. • Robert Kinges: a local Tewkesbury-based painter and mason active in the early seventeenth century, frequently mentioned in Tewkesbury churchwardens’ accounts for painting and general building work and maintenance.32 Kinges can almost certainly be discounted as it is most unlikely that he would have attracted any elite patronage outside of Tewkesbury. • Rumbole Vankersbeke: a painter born in Brabant and known to be living in London between 1570 and 1572.33 Vankersbeke’s work as a painter is unknown, although he had a reputation for gambling and drunkenness.34 Although not impossible, the dates are in all likelihood too early to consider Vankersbeke as a plausible contender for the painter of The Judgement of Solomon. • Richard Knuckle/Knuckles: a Cambridgebased picture-maker and limner, responsible for decorative painting at numerous Cambridge colleges35 who was owed the considerable sum

Although none of the above proposals can be mooted with any certainty, Richard Knuckle/ Knuckles is certainly of interest. He is established as working far later than that of the artist responsible for The Judgement of Solomon, but it is of noteworthy curiosity that he received £7 for the reworking of pictures belonging to the University of Cambridge (the same sum paid in 1659 for the restoration of The Judgement of Solomon, seemingly to a James Oliver). The painting, known as ‘Stoky’s painting’ was originally painted c.1590 by the artist John Cobbould41 and depicts the University and Meetings including the Caput Senatus, a Syndicate and Regulating Weights and Measures.42 It was donated to the Registrary of the University by former Registrar Matthew Stokes (Stokys) (1558–1591). The Cambridge Antiquarian Society minutes suggest that Knuckles ‘could not do justice without giving a little original work’43 indicating a significant reworking of the picture. It is most doubtful, considering the receipt located in the Middle Temple archive made out to a James Oliver, but ‘RK’ could relate to the 1658–59 reworking of the picture, which could then put Richard Knuckle/ Knuckles in the frame for the intervention although not the original painting.

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Figure 24. Unknown Netherlandish artist (after Lucas de Heere), An Allegory of the Tudor Succession: The Family of Henry VIII, c.1590, oil on oak panel, 114.3 × 182.2 cm. Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection, Yale. Image courtesy of the Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection.

Who commissioned the painting? Who commissioned The Judgement of Solomon is a further question that requires some attention. The earliest documented confirmation of the painting being located at the Middle Temple can be found in receipt records from the 1659 restoration, with no predating archival evidence.44 The speculated, but not proven, earliest setting for the painting may be argued as being the Middle Temple’s Grand Hall, the building of which commenced in 1562 and completed a decade later.45 Confident with their own jurisdictional, power-bearing authority, the newly built, extravagant halls at the centre of the Inns of Court reflected the expansion of the legal profession.46 Time from build completion to finishing of the interior decor would almost certainly be longer, and therefore the dates tally well with The Judgement of Solomon. With the approximate dates of the painting proposed by dendrochronology, it is not unreasonable to consider the members’ desire for an impressive painting to hang within their newly completed hall. No endowment was secured for the building of the Middle Temple’s impressive hall – building progressed slowly with funds donated by members.47 Records from the Middle Temple disclose how members were charged a sliding fee for the ongoing building costs of the hall and its fittings, with refusal to pay resulting in the loss of their chambers. For example in 1571, benchers were ordered to pay £3; barristers, common attorneys, and officers in the great court, 40 shillings; and 20 shillings from ‘others of the fellowship’.48 Edmund Plowden, treasurer of the Inn from 20 June 1562 to 1567, supervised the building of the

Hall. He was also responsible for fundraising, a role he continued to maintain beyond 1567.49 In Plowden’s reports of 1571 there is clear emphasis on confidence in judicial decision-making to detect fraud and arrive at true judgement.50 In 1575 money was still being raised for the building of the Hall’s elaborately carved screen. In common with many artists in Britain at that time, joiners were also mainly foreign émigrés from the Low Countries who brought with them expertise in intricate decorative strapwork and carving.51 The year 1584 saw the death of the influential Plowden, whose effigy is located on the north side of Temple church. Due to this timing, it is therefore unlikely that he was directly accountable for the commissioning of the painting, however The Judgement of Solomon does signify a clear portrayal of his eminence and can perhaps be viewed in the context of his leadership. In 1931, Bruce Williamson, in his Catalogue of Paintings and Engravings in the Possession of the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, proposed that The Judgement of Solomon may have been donated by ‘Whytyng’.52 This suggestion is most unlikely since it was in 1516 that ‘Whytyng’ was offered exemption from his members’ charges in exchange for ‘one good picture to hang in the Hall or one “Hoggeshed” of good wine’.53On scrutiny of The Judgement of Solomon a further matter is worth consideration. The onlookers appear to symbolise various nationalities and could be considered a representation of a jury, demonstrating impartiality and open judgement. Within the audience, specific figures seem to be prominent and distinctive, possibly even detailed portrait studies, with others resembling generic stock figures. It

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could be feasible to regard these portraits as historic members of the Middle Temple contemporary to the painting’s commission. Well documented and already discussed is the building of the Middle Temple’s Hall and screen which were funded by a compulsory fee for benchers and members of the Temple.54 Indeed, benefactors who made important contributions in one way or another were honoured by displaying their heraldry in stained glass. One example, dated to 1573, is the arms of Edmund Plowden, who as discussed, raised funds and supervised the building of the Hall.55 It is not inconsistent to suggest that The Judgement of Solomon was paid for by members, some of whom, perhaps those who donated the largest sums of money, had their portraits incorporated within the painting. This model of corporate sponsorship for art closely resembles the process by which the actual building works at Middle Temple were funded. Comparing The Judgement of Solomon with British sixteenth-century portraiture Paintings of religious subjects and biblical narratives of this period are rarely still extant, but they are known to have been more common than the surviving examples would suggest.56 The Judgement of Solomon bears a resemblance to a handful of earlier painted Tudor and Elizabethan royal portraits. With the Inns of Courts’ increasing power in the later sixteenth century, displaying a painting that exhibits sovereign influence could be speculated as defining the Inns of Court as influential and commanding, like the monarchy. With this in mind, prominent royal portraits from the Tudor period can be seen as a significant comparison to The Judgement of Solomon. Possibly the most comparable of royal portraits is The Family of Henry VIII: An Allegory of the Tudor Succession painted in Britain in c.1572 and attributed to the Dutch immigrant Lucas de Heere (1534–1584).57 The depiction of an enthroned king, central to the composition, is the first obvious similarity: Henry VIII (founder of the Church of England) by de Heere and the wise Old Testament King Solomon in The Judgement of Solomon. Either side of Henry VIII stand two divergent parties – his successors. On Henry’s right and placed behind him is the Catholic Mary Tudor (r.1553–1558) with her husband King Philip II of Spain, followed by Mars, the god of war. On his left, and standing in front of Henry, representing his desired Protestant sovereignty, is Mary’s successor, the Protestant Elizabeth (r.1558–1603) accompanied hand-in-hand by Peace and Plenty, crushing weapons as they walk. The inscription around the painting is addressed to the Protestant Sir Francis Walsingham (c.1532–1590) and speaks of keeping England Protestant, distant from foreign wars and independent of Catholic powers.58 This undoubtedly political depiction has parallels to The Judgement of Solomon, both with their portrayals of two contending parties with the central king

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Figure 25. Detail of An Allegory of the Tudor Succession: The Family of Henry VIII (copy after Lucas de Heere). Fictive gold on Henry VIII’s throne. Image courtesy of the Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection.

Figure 26. Infrared reflectograph detail of An Allegory of the Tudor Succession: The Family of Henry VIII (copy after Lucas de Heere) reveals evidence of a brushy priming application. Image courtesy of the Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection.

figure acting as arbiter in both images. A further stylistic point of interest is the similar resemblance in their architectural settings: both images have a centrally positioned ornate throne upon a tiled floor, surrounded by pillars. A later version, dated


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Figure 27. Remigius van Leemput, Henry VII, Elizabeth of York, Henry VIII and Jane Seymour, 1667, oil on canvas, 88.9 × 99.2 cm. Royal Collection, London. Royal Collection Trust/© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2016.

to c.1590, of de Heere’s painting is in existence59 (figure 24). Painted within a similar timeframe to The Judgement of Solomon, this later copy of de Heere’s original work seems, on stylistic grounds, to be the work of a Netherlandish émigré. Of interest may be the different methods used to imitate the golden throne: fictive gold using finely placed leadtin yellow on an ochre background is utilised in the copy of The Family of Henry VIII: An Allegory of the Tudor Succession (figure 25) whereas gold leaf is used in The Judgement of Solomon (figure 8). A similar working method is the application of a freely applied brushy ground, visible in both The Judgement of Solomon (figure 3) and the copy of The Family of Henry VIII: An Allegory of the Tudor Succession (figure 26). Hans Holbein’s (1497–1543) epoch-defining ‘Whitehall mural’ completed in 1537 but destroyed in the palace fire of 1698 can also be seen as influential. A scaled-down copy (88.9 × 99.2 cm) of the mural, painted for Charles II by the Flemish painter Remigius van Leemput (1607–1675) remains in existence (figure 27).60 The full-length figures of Henry VIII and his third wife Jane Seymour in front, with his parents Henry VII and Elizabeth of York just behind, surround a central tablet with Latin verse celebrating the Tudor reign. Only those close to Henry VIII would initially have seen the mural,

Figure 28. Hans Holbein the Younger, Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, c.1534, body colour, gold, and black ink over metalpoint on vellum, 22.9 × 18.3 cm. Royal Collection, London. Royal Collection Trust/© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2016.

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Figure 29. British School, The Family of Henry VIII, c.1545, oil on canvas, 144.5 × 355.9 cm. Royal Collection, London. Royal Collection Trust/© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2016.

although later into the 1540s, and particularly in the 1600s, it became more accessible according to the discovery of descriptions of the mural.61 The square composition of the painting and the architectural background offer parallels to The Judgement of Solomon. The scalloped-shaped back of King Solomon’s throne also reveals a resemblance to the scalloped alcoves of the Whitehall mural (figure 8). The artist responsible for The Judgement of Solomon would almost certainly have been aware of the mural and may even have witnessed it at Whitehall. It is highly likely that the artist or patron of The Judgement of Solomon wanted to evoke a similar grandeur to that of the imposing and dominant Whitehall mural, albeit on a smaller scale, to remind the Middle Templars of their jurisdictional duties. Henry VIII, in the guise of King Solomon, was depicted a few years earlier in Holbein’s c.1534 small painting of Solomon and the Queen of Sheba (figure 28).62 The bearded face of the king and stocky figure unite the biblical and Tudor kings. King Solomon is painted receiving gifts from the Queen of Sheba, emblematic of Henry VIII becoming the supreme head of the Church of England.63 Similar to The Judgement of Solomon, the king, central in the composition, sits high on his throne surrounded by figures with grand pillars located in the background of the room and Latin text above and below him. Holbein’s 1545 painting of The Family of Henry VIII64 (figure 29) bears further similarities: again the centrally placed King Henry is set within a pillared interior (presumably Whitehall) and arched doorways to the far right and left provide glimpses of the outside, giving a strong compositional resemblance to The Judgement of Solomon. Conclusion Dendrochronology has established a probable date range for the painting of after 1586 and before 1602 and critically, the initials ‘RK’ and ‘R’, while

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overpainted, have been demonstrated to have an original version on the painting, indicating its original albeit uncertain author. Without relevant documentary evidence, why the painting was reworked cannot be ascertained, only speculated. Although no artist has been established for the ‘RK’ initials found on the painting, their discovery adds to ongoing research into artists working in Britain during this period. It is hoped that in time art historians and conservators may uncover further works by this elusive artist. More light has also been shed on the subsequent conservation history of this important painting. Conservation treatment and technical study together have identified the extent of the reworking of the painting, in both the figure of King Solomon and in the Latin texts. This evidence has been related to archival reports at the Middle Temple to provide a date for this significant reworking intervention (1659) as well as identify a second more minor restoration in 1699. While the exact circumstances of the commissioning of The Judgement of Solomon are not known, the painting remains of great significance both to the Inns of Court and to British painting of the late sixteenth century. Acknowledgements

I would like to extend many thanks to Rupert Featherstone, Spike Bucklow, Lucy Wrapson, Chris Titmus, Christine Slottved Kimbriel, Simon Bobak, Lesley Whitelaw, Siobhán Prendergast, Charlotte Bolland, Sophie Plender, Tarnya Cooper, Robert Tittler, Ed Town, Ian Tyers, Brian Singer, Jessica David and Alison Wheeler-Heyn.

Notes

1. In the story of the Judgement of Solomon, two mothers bore children but sadly one child died in the night. The mother whose child had passed away swapped her child for the living child, but both mothers told the same story, claiming that their child was the living child. To arbitrate, Solomon ordered that the living child should be cut into two and both mothers given half each. Horrified by the thought, the


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true mother of the living child refused and asked for the child to be given to the other mother. With this, Solomon passed the child to the rightful mother; 1 Kings 3:16–28. 2. B. Williamson, Catalogue of Paintings and Engravings in the Possession of the Hon. Society of the Middle Temple, London 1931, p. 15. 3. T. Cooper, ‘Professional pride and personal agendas: portraits of judges, lawyers, and members of the Inns of Court’, in E. Archer, J.E. Goldring and S. Knight (eds), The Intellectual and Cultural World of the Early Modern Inns of Court, Manchester 2011, p. 175, note 14. 4. I. Tyers, ‘Report 408. The Judgement of Solomon’, Dendrochronological Consultancy Limited, 2011, p. 6 (unpublished report held at the Hamilton Kerr Institute). 5. Cross-section samples found evidence of earths and vine black appearing intermittently. 6. The imprimatura layer consists of lead white, vine black and earths, bound in oil. 7. It is presumed that the imprimatura layer has become more visible with age with the increased transparency of the upper paint layers. 8. C. Bolland, National Portrait Gallery, Collections Curator Sixteenth Century and Project Curator of the ‘Making Art in Tudor Britain’ project, personal communication. King Edward IV, unknown artist, 1590s–1620, oil on panel, 57.2 × 44.8 cm, NPG 4980 (10). 9. R. Billinge, ‘Artists’ underdrawing and the workshop transfer process’, in T. Cooper, A. Burnstock, M. Howard and E. Town (eds), Painting in Britain 1500–1630: Production, Influences and Patronage, Oxford 2015, p. 140 and C. Bolland (see note 8) personal communication. Red lake underdrawing was discovered in the Portrait of Sir Richard Southwell, after Holbein, 1536, 45.7 × 35.6 cm, NPG 4912 and the Portrait of Elizabeth I, unknown artist, c.1585– 90, oil on panel, 95.3 × 81.9 cm, NPG 2471. 10. Solvent mixture of 1 part industrial methylated spirit to 4 parts Shellsol T. 11. B. Singer, Investigation of Paint Sample for Hamilton Kerr Institute, Judgement of Solomon, Northumbria University, 2011 (unpublished report held at the Hamilton Kerr Institute). 12. K.J. van den Berg, K. Keune, S. de Groot and H. van Keulen, ‘Binding media in Tudor and Jacobean paintings’, in T. Cooper, A. Burnstock, M. Howard and E. Town (eds), Painting in Britain 1500–1630: Production, Influences and Patronage, Oxford 2015, p. 153. 13. Van den Berg et al. (note 12), p. 153. 14. Van den Berg et al. (note 12), p. 153. 15. Identified using polarised light microscopy (PLM). It is likely that the inclusion of an organic lake is a contaminant from the lower reddish-pink layer. 16. From cross-section sampling the yellow pigment present could not be confirmed. On a comparable sample, PLM suggested the presence of realgar and possibly massicot. With a further comparable sample, scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive X-ray (SEM-EDX) analysis suggested the presence of lead-tin yellow and orpiment, possibly also with the inclusion of realgar and massicot. 17. L. Sheldon, ‘Palette, practice and purpose: pigments and their employment by native and Anglo-Netherlandish artists in Tudor and Jacobean painting’, in T. Cooper, A. Burnstock, M. Howard

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and E. Town (eds), Painting in Britain 1500–1630: Production, Influences and Patronage, Oxford 2015, p. 131 18. A single particle was targeted giving an even ratio of lead to tin, indicative of lead-tin yellow. 19. Sheldon 2015 (note 17), p. 130. Orpiment has been detected in the Portrait of James I, c.1590 (NPG 1188) and the Portrait of Anne Boleyn, late sixteenth century (NPG 668). Interestingly both these portraits are of a similar date to The Judgement of Solomon. 20. C. Rae, ‘Marcus Gheeraerts, John de Critz, Robert Peake and William Larkin: a comparative study’, in T. Cooper, A. Burnstock, M. Howard and E. Town (eds), Painting in Britain 1500–1630: Production, Influences and Patronage, Oxford 2015, p. 175. 21. King Solomon’s hair has been repainted twice, although its original appearance is not clear. The original positioning of the king’s head suggests that his crown, as seen today, is a later reworking, but nothing further is visible with infrared or X-radiography. 22. The Latin text has been discussed and transcribed in Cooper 2011 (note 3), pp. 160–61; L. Hutson, The Invention of Suspicion, Law and Mimesis in Shakespeare and Renaissance Drama, Oxford 2007, p. 198; Williamson 1931 (note 2), pp. 15–16. 23. The Middle Temple archive, Treasurer’s Receipt Books, 1659, MT .2/TRB/17. See also Williamson 1931 (note 2), pp. 15–16 and Cooper 2011 (note 3), pp. 157–78. 24. The Middle Temple archive, Treasurer’s Receipt Books, MT.2/TRB/77. See also Williamson 1931 (note 2), p. 15. 25. No reference can be found for a James Oliver, artist or restorer for the period. 26. K. Murphy and A. Traninger, The Emergence of Impartiality, Leiden 2014, p. 12. 27. T. Cooper and M. Howard, ‘Artists, patrons and the context for the production of painted images’, in T. Cooper, A. Burnstock, M. Howard and E. Town (eds), Painting in Britain 1500–1630: Production, Influences and Patronage, Oxford 2015, p. 6. 28. C. Brown, ‘British painting and the Low Countries 1530–1630’, in K. Hearn (ed.), Dynasties: Painting in Tudor and Jacobean England 1530–1630, London 1995, p. 27. 29. E. Town, ‘A biographical dictionary of London painters, 1547–1625’, The Walpole Society, vol. 76, 2014, pp. 1–236; R. Tittler, Portraits, Painters, and Publics in Provincial England 1540–1640, Oxford 2012; R. Tittler, The Face of the City, Civic Portraiture and Civic Identity in Early Modern England, Manchester 2007; R. Tittler, Townspeople and Nation: English Urban Experiences 1540–1640, Stanford 2001; R. Tittler, Early Modern British Painters, 1500–1640, 3rd edn, 2016: http://spectrum.library.Concordia. ca/980096 (accessed 10 March 2016). 30. R. Tittler, Early Modern British Painters, 1500–1640, 3rd edn, 2016: http://spectrum.library.Concordia. ca/980096, vide Kimby, Richard (accessed 10 March 2016). 31. Tittler 2012 (note 29), p. 70 and R. Tittler, personal communication, 2011. Town 2014 (note 29), p. 123. 32. R. Tittler, Early Modern British Painters, 1500–1640, 3rd edn, 2016: http://spectrum.library.Concordia. ca/980096, vide Kinges, Richard (accessed 10 March 2016) and R. Tittler, personal communication, 2011. 33. Town 2014 (note 29), p. 182.


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34. R. Tittler, Early Modern British Painters, 1500–1640, 3rd edn, 2016: http://spectrum.library.Concordia. ca/980096, vide Vankersbarke, Vankersbeke, Rombold, Rombout (accessed 10 March 2016). 35. R. Tittler, Early Modern British Painters, 1500–1640, 3rd edn, 2016: http://spectrum.library.Concordia. ca/980096, vide Knuckle, Richard (accessed 10 March 2016). 36. Proceedings of the Cambridge Antiquarian Society, with communications made to the Society, Cambridge Antiquarian Society, Cambridge 1911, vol. 16 (1911–1912): https://archive.org/stream/ proceedingsofcam1619camb/proceedingsof cam1619camb_djvu.txt (accessed 3 February 2016). 37. Cambridge University Library, Vice-Chancellor’s Court Records, VCCt.I 4 fol. 371v: http://janus.lib. cam.ac.uk/db/node.xsp?id=EAD%2FGBR%2F0265 %2FVCCt.I%204 (accessed 3 February 2016). 38. Cambridge University Library, Vice-Chancellor’s Court Records, VCCt.III 10: http://janus.lib.cam.ac.uk/db/ node.xsp?id=EAD%2FGBR%2F0265%2FVCCt. III%2010 (accessed 3 February 2016). 39. Town 2014 (note 29), p. 126. 40. Cambridge Antiquarian Society, 39th Annual General Meeting, 26 May 1879, p. 215: http:// archaeologydataservice.ac.uk/archiveDS/ archiveDownload?t=arch-1895-1/dissemination/ pdf/PCAS/1881_XXI/PCAS_XXI_1881_207-218_ Humphrey.pdf (accessed 3 February 2016). 41. John Cobbould (Cobbold) was a Norwich-based painter who was admitted to the Painter-Stainers’ Company in 1612, probably by apprenticeship with Nicholas Hilliard, see: R. Tittler, Early Modern British Painters, 1500–1640, 3rd edn, 2016: http://spectrum. library.Concordia.ca/980096, vide Cobbold, John (accessed 10 March 2016). 42. ARTUK website, http://artuk.org/discover/artists/ cobbould-john-active-late-16th-c/view_as/grid/ search/keyword:cobbould/page/1 (accessed 10 March 2016). John Cobbould, University and Meetings including the Caput Senatus, a Syndicate and Regulating Weights and Measures, c.1590, oil on canvas, c.150cm × 150 cm, Old Schools Collection, University of Cambridge. 43. Cambridge Antiquarian Society 1879 (note 40). 44. See note 23. 45. M. Girouard, ‘The halls of the Elizabethan and early Stuart Inns of the Court’, in E. Archer, J.E. Goldring and S. Knight (eds), The Intellectual and Cultural World of the Early Modern Inns of Court, Manchester 2011, pp. 160–61; Hutson 2007 (note 22), p. 143. 46. Hutson 2007 (note 22), p. 196. 47. Girouard 2011 (note 45), p. 143.

48. Girouard 2011 (note 45), p. 143. 49. Girouard 2011 (note 45), p. 150 and Middle Temple Records I, 159. 50. Hutson 2007 (note 22), pp. 198–99. See J.H. Baker, ‘English law and the Renaissance’, in The Legal Profession and Common Law, London 1988, pp. 461–76. 51. Girouard 2011 (note 45), p. 147. 52. Williamson 1931 (note 2), p. 15. 53. T. Cooper, ‘Professional pride and personal agendas: portraits of judges, lawyers, and members of the Inns of Court’, in E. Archer, J.E. Goldring and S. Knight (eds), The Intellectual and Cultural World of the Early Modern Inns of Court, Manchester 2011, p. 160, and Minutes of the Middle Temple, I, 49. 54. Hutson 2007 (note 22). 55. Girouard 2011 (note 45), pp. 149–50. 56. T. Cooper, Citizen Portrait, Portrait Painting and the Urban Elite of Tudor and Jacobean England and Wales, Yale 2012, p. 62. 57. Attributed to Lucas de Heere, The Family of Henry VIII: An Allegory of the Tudor Succession, c.1572, oil on panel, 131.2 × 184.0 cm, National Museum Wales, accession no. NMW A 564. 58. J. Bate and D. Thornton, Shakespeare: Staging the World, London 2012, p. 24. 59. Unknown artist, An Allegory of the Tudor Succession: The Family of Henry VIII, oil on panel, c.1590, 114.3 × 182.2 cm, Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection, USA, accession no. B1974.3.7. 60. Remigius van Leemput, Henry VII, Elizabeth of York, Henry VIII and Jane Seymour, 1667, oil on canvas, The Royal Collection Trust, RCIN 405750. 61. X. Brooke, Henry VIII Revealed: Holbein’s Portrait and its Legacy, Liverpool 2003, p. 27. 62. Hans Holbein the Younger, Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, c.1534, brown and grey wash, blue, red and green body colour, white heightening, gold, and pen and ink over metalpoint on vellum, The Royal Collection Trust, UK, RCIN 912188. 63. Brooke 2003 (note 61), pp. 14–16. 64. British School, The Family of Henry VIII, c.1545, oil on canvas, The Royal Collection Trust, UK, RCIN 405796.

Author Christine Braybrook graduated from the University of Brighton with an honours degree in Fine Art Painting in 2005. In 2009 she obtained an MA in Conservation of Easel Paintings from Northumbria University. She completed a two-year internship at the Hamilton Kerr Institute in 2011. Since then she has been based at the HKI as a conservator.

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A note on the use of the purple pigment fluorite on The Man in Red MARY KEMPSKI Abstract The Royal Collection’s sixteenth-century full-length portrait of The Man in Red came to the Hamilton Kerr Institute for conservation in 2013. The painting remains something of a mystery: its artist, sitter and provenance are unknown. The painting’s technique is unmistakably ‘Northern’ in character and yet the portrait is hard to place geographically. Notably, during analysis of the painting the purple pigment fluorite was discovered. Fluorite is usually considered to be a localised pigment, mined mainly in southern Germany and Austria, and was not initially thought to have been widely exported. However, more recent work has revealed its use on paintings from the Low Countries as well. As yet the pigment has not been found on paintings by English artists. The pigment occurs on paintings within a limited timeframe, corroborating well with the date of c.1530–40s suggested by dendrochronology on this painting. Finding fluorite on this portrait would indicate that it was not painted in England and therefore Germany or the Low Countries would seem more probable for a provenance.

Introduction The portrait of The Man in Red (figure 1), belonging to the Royal Collection, came to the Hamilton Kerr Institute to be cleaned and treated structurally before being displayed in the exhibition, In Fine Style, at the Queen’s Gallery, London in 2013.1 The painting is referred to as The Man in Red as it is not known who the young man might be with his swaggering stance, striking costume and, unusually for this period, open landscape setting. Various claims to his identity have been made in the past including a young Henry VIII; subsequently Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk; more frequently Thomas’ son, Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey; and even Henry Fitzroy, Duke of Richmond, Henry VIII’s illegitimate son. The artist also remains a mystery. The style of the portrait does not immediately suggest any particular Tudor artist in England, nor for that matter a continental artist. The painting’s technique is unmistakably ‘Northern’ in character and yet it is hard to place. Could it be a Netherlandish artist painting in England or was the painting made on the continent, possibly Germany? Could the landscape in the background be inspired by Italy, or the middle distance chalk pits be somewhere on the continent, witnessed perhaps by an itinerant artist from the North? These are all questions that as yet do not have a definitive answer. During the painting’s treatment much analysis was undertaken and experts on various aspects of the painting were consulted in the hope of uncovering some crucial piece of information.2 It was therefore of the utmost interest to find the pigment fluorite and yet, despite being tantalisingly close to discovering the identity of the young man and who may have been commissioned to paint him, the final chapter has still eluded us.

The use of fluorite in the sixteenth century Apart from the copious use of the expensive dyes, madder and kermes, in the red glazes3 of the costume of The Man in Red, the most unusual, interesting and surprising pigment found on this sixteenth-century portrait is the purple pigment fluorite (calcium fluoride),4 usually considered to be a rather localised pigment. It was mined mainly in southern Germany and Austria and was not initially thought to have been widely exported. The pigment appears to have been used on paintings of this period for a limited time span. Other examples in which this pigment has been found fall within a 100-year period from the 1450s to the 1550s.5 These facts are exceedingly important and interesting when they are related to The Man in Red. Although we have little notion as to the country of origin of this painting and there is scant information on its provenance before the painting entered the Royal Collection,6 the dating of this painting corroborates well with the projected timeline for the use of this pigment as dendrochronology has dated this portrait to c.1530s–40s.7 However, recent discoveries of fluorite on other paintings have meant that a broadening of the geographical boundaries for the use of this pigment has become necessary. Paintings created in most areas of the Low Countries are possible candidates for the finding of fluorite, although the majority of cases relate to artists working in the southern territories. The National Gallery, London, has a number of sixteenth-century paintings in which this pigment has been found,8 including three from the Alpine region and six from the Low Countries. An example of fluorite pigment in a cross-section from one of these paintings, The Virgin and Child Enthroned with Angels and Saints by Michael Pacher, an artist painting in Austria, reveals large and strongly tinted

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Hamilton Kerr Institute, Bulletin number 6, 2016

A note on the use of the purple pigment fluorite

Figure 1. Unknown German or Netherlandish artist, The Man in Red, c.1535, oil on oak panel, 190.5 Ă— 105.9 cm: after conservation treatment. Royal Collection Trust/Š Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2016.

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palette. Some artists from the Low Countries who are documented as using fluorite seem to be those who spent time in Italy and could have passed through the Tyrolean area on their journey. Perhaps they sourced the fluorite pigment during their travels. Two portraits of English sitters, from the National Portrait Gallery, London, in which fluorite has recently been discovered, were painted by Netherlandish artists, probably not in England but on the continent.9 Given its rather low tinting strength in oil, it might be expected that the pigment would have been used in manuscript painting, where the medium is of a different refractive index. However this does not seem to have been the case – it rarely occurs, or at the very least has not yet been identified, widely in manuscript painting.10

Figure 2. Detail of The Man in Red showing the use of the purple pigment fluorite mixed with white over a tan-coloured underlayer in the foreground.

Fluorite in The Man in Red In The Man in Red, fluorite has been used primarily in the foreground to create a subtle mauve-tinted rocky hill on which the figure is standing (figure 2). The tone was produced by an underpainted layer mainly comprising the semi-transparent earth pigment, raw sienna, plus other earth pigments. Fluorite mixed with lead white has been added on top to unusual effect, creating an exciting, vibrant colour scheme with the light blue sky, pale green background and scarlet red costume. Fluorite was also detected in small amounts in the pink priming layer mixed with lead white and red lake. The size of the pigment particles is relatively small but in this case they appear to have quite a strong tinting strength (figure 3). To find fluorite on this portrait would, given our present knowledge, seem to confirm that the portrait was not painted in England and therefore Germany or the Low Countries would be more likely candidates for its country of origin. Sadly, the discovery of the use of the pigment fluorite was not pivotal in establishing a sitter or an artist for this most lavish yet subtle of paintings. The occurrence of fluorite in this painting is noteworthy, but The Man in Red remains an enigma.

Figure 3. Cross-section in normal light (top) and ultraviolet light (bottom) taken from an area in the foreground showing fluorite particles. In this area, on the very edge of the painting, the blue-toned background (b) is situated beneath the purple fluorite particles (c) with a light brown layer (d) on top. The pink priming layer (a) also shows a few particles of fluorite. The white on top of the cross-section is non-original old filler (e) with non-original repaint (f) above.

Notes

1. A. Reynolds (ed.), In Fine Style: The Art of Tudor and Stuart Fashion, London 2013, pp. 85–86, 192–93, 286. 2. M. Kempski and L. Whittaker, ‘Who was the Man in Red and who painted him?’, in Postprints of Symposium XIX for the Study of Underdrawing and Technology in Painting: Technical Studies of Paintings: Problems of Attribution (15th–17th century), forthcoming. 3. Analysis using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and attenuated total reflectance-Fourier transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy undertaken by Rachel Morrison, National Gallery, London. 4. Scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive X-ray (SEM-EDX) analysis undertaken by Spike Bucklow, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

pigment particles. Pigment particle size seems to correlate to the area in which the pigment was mined. However, the size and tinting strength of fluorite pigment particles varies a great deal and at present cannot reliably indicate a particular mine or geographical area. The question that seems unclear to date is whether fluorite was ever traded and used by English artists. In this period many Flemish artists were working in England and it is possible that they brought fluorite with them as part of their

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A note on the use of the purple pigment fluorite

5. M. Richter, O. Hahn and R. Fuchs, ‘Purple fluorite and its use in Late Gothic and Early Renaissance painting in Northern Europe’, Studies in Conservation, vol. 46, no. 1, 2001 pp. 1–13. 6. The Man in Red was sold to King Charles II in 1660 when he was at Breda before he set out for England and the restoration of the monarchy. It was part of a group of 72 paintings purchased from the art dealer William Frizell. The Man in Red has not been traced in Henry VIII’s inventories although it is possible that previously it was in England, perhaps owned by another English family, before being acquired by Frizell. Information obtained from Lucy Whittaker, the Royal Collection. 7. Felling dates for the four boards proved to be between c.1527 and 1543. I. Tyers, ‘Report 407. The Man in Red’, Dendrochronological Consultancy Limited, May 2011 (unpublished report held at the Hamilton Kerr Institute). 8. M. Spring, ‘Occurrences of the purple pigment fluorite on paintings in the National Gallery’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 21, 2000, pp. 20–27.

9. T. Cooper, A. Burnstock, M. Howard and E. Town (eds), Painting in Britain 1500–1630: Production, Influences and Patronage, Oxford 2015, pp. 132–33. 10. Fluorite has not been found in manuscripts of this period, but this may be due to the fact that scientists have not been looking for it, particularly in the field of Raman spectroscopy. Paola Riccardi, Fitzwilliam Museum, personal communication.

Author Mary Kempski has a degree in the History of Art and Fine Art from the University of Reading (1972–76). She has a postgraduate diploma in the Conservation of Easel Paintings from the Hamilton Kerr Institute (1977– 1980) and was an intern at the Akademie der bildenden Kunste, Vienna (1980). From 1981 she has worked as a freelance conservator at the Hamilton Kerr Institute in the Institute’s London studio and in Cambridge. Since 2003 she has taught and supervised students, becoming Assistant to the Director in 2010.

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All that is gold does not glitter: a technical, historical and iconographical study of the central panel of the Great Chamber fireplace, Charterhouse, London, and the figure of Rowland Buckett CARLOS GONZÁLEZ JUSTE Abstract The history of the decorated chimney-piece of the Great Chamber at the Charterhouse, London, is intimately connected to the changes and modifications of the house, which in its time has been transformed from a monastery to a private mansion, boys’ school and finally into an almshouse. The material history of the chimney-piece includes severe damage suffered during the bombing of the Charterhouse in 1941 and the complex restoration that followed. The conservation treatment of the central panel of the overmantle at the Hamilton Kerr Institute provided a unique opportunity to study not only its materials and technique, but also its history, iconography and contested attribution to the seventeenth-century artist Rowland Buckett.

Introduction The present article came about as a consequence of the conservation project undertaken on the Great Chamber fireplace at the Charterhouse, London (figure 1). The aim of this research was to expand understanding of the work and facilitate its restoration. The treatment allowed a more thorough evaluation of the panel’s condition and quality in

addition to technical data, which was invaluable in addressing questions concerning the panel’s origin and attribution. There were two main strands to the research: to shed light on the disputed authorship of the work and to find possible sources for the decorative motifs of the chimney-piece. To achieve this, this article draws on various sources of information including Rowland Buckett’s biography and oeuvre, technical and stylistic evidence from the panel, and contemporary documents relating to the panel’s history. Brief description of the panel and its iconography The panel forms the central part of the overmantle from the Great Chamber’s chimney-piece (figure 2). It comprises a central oval decorated with the Stuart royal arms and the cipher ‘CR’ with four spandrels encircling it. These include detailed depictions of the evangelists in roundels executed in sgraffito technique enclosed by delicate scrollwork. The spandrels and central oval are in turn framed by another pattern of scrollwork, which is laid inside a gilded moulding framing the panel. The background of the oval is red with an intricate arabesque decoration, while the spandrels are decorated with foliage of different colours.

Figure 1. Chimney-piece of the Great Chamber, Charterhouse, London. Image courtesy of Tim A. Bruening, www.tb-photography.de.

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Problems in dating and attribution: contradictions in the panel’s history The attribution to Buckett is based on surviving documentation (payments to Rowland Buckett) from Charterhouse and an inscription on the back of the panel that reads ‘Painted by Rolaud Buckett. 1626’, the year in which Buckett started work in Sutton’s Charterhouse, finishing in 1630. It is known from records that he painted


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All that is gold does not glitter

Figure 2. Central Panel from the Great Chamber’s Chimney-piece, 1626, oil on panel, 200.1 cm wide × 135.7 cm high, Charterhouse, London. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

chimney-pieces in the Great Chamber and the Assembly Chamber.1 According to the records, he was paid £10 5s between March 1625 and March 1626 ‘in part of a greater sum for painting the Chimney peece in the Assembly chamber’, and between September and November 1626 ‘for the Guilding and payntingue the Chymney peece in the Greete Assemblie Chamber, and fore mendingue w[th] payntingue & guildingue the wanscott in the said Assemblie Chamber, & allsoe for guildingue the Organs in the Chapple the some of 50 [li], whereof I have formerlie Reveaved x[li] SOe I Saye Rec in full discharge the some of xli [li]’. In September 1626 another record states, ‘in parte of paym[t] towards the Chymney peece in the greate Chamber x[li] and for an ell of Holland v[s]’.2 This information would normally be enough to ascribe a painting to an artist, however, the documentation is vague and does not include a description of the chimney-piece. The inscription on the back cannot be taken as irrefutable proof as it is unknown when and by whom it was applied. Questions concerning the authorship and date of the panel have therefore been raised over the years due to the discordance between the overmantle and the lower portion of the chimney-piece, both in style and quality. Publications during the nineteenth century have produced different, and in many cases, contradictory explanations of its history. In 1849 it was claimed by W.C. Blanchard that part of the decoration on the overmantle was introduced in 1626 during a restoration of the chimney-piece undertaken by Buckett, while the main areas were probably originally executed by a foreign artist.3 The idea of Buckett as the restorer not artist was echoed by C.R. Booth Barrett in 1895.4 Pevsner also stated that the central panel was repainted in 1626 (when the name of Rowland Buckett was painted on the back of the panel).5 In 1925 the inventory of the Historical Monuments of London claimed that the lower part of the chimney-piece dates from the early seventeenth century

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and was painted by Buckett, but the overmantle, of more delicate execution, was already extant, and the arms and the ‘CR’ cipher later additions.6 Temple and Porter have published extensive studies in recent years on the Charterhouse. Temple suggests, based on Brown’s work, that considering the removal of royal arms elsewhere during the Civil War, the cipher ‘CR’ refers to Charles II, indicating a post-Restoration date.7 Temple and Porter also claim that the current panel was a substitution for a previous one, which would have been emblazoned with the Duke of Norfolk’s arms.8 In their view, this change occurred in 1626 when Dallington, the current governor at that time, continued with the decoration of Charterhouse.9 The contradictory information from these sources makes it difficult to obtain a clear idea of the date or attribution of the chimney-piece therefore it is necessary to address the problem from different angles, in particular using technical studies. Interventions and restorations over time A key factor contributing to the uncertainty on the attribution and date is the long history of interventions that have taken place. Due to its nature as an everyday object, the fireplace has suffered change, renovation and damage over time. Transformation characterises the history of the chimney-piece at Charterhouse, and while it is not an easy task to decipher the many campaigns of restoration that have been undertaken, it is possible to understand and build a chronology of some of them. It is likely that the origin of the chimney-piece lies in the sixteenth century and the Duke of Norfolk’s occupation of the house. It is also known that the first governors of the hospital undertook improvements in the house. According to Porter, in 1626 the governor of the Charterhouse continued with the ornamentation of the house and among other changes the central panel of the overmantle was removed and replaced by what appears to be the current panel, bearing the coat of arms of King Charles I, the initials ‘C.R.’ in an oval and the four evangelists in the spandrels.10 Although there is scant information on the chimney-piece available from the eighteenth century, there is both written and visual information on the changes to the overmantle in the nineteenth century. The first change is mentioned in a description of the fireplace from 1808: ‘the great centre panel is of gold, with an oval containing the arms of James I. and a carved cherub beneath, clumsily adapted to the situation’.11 The addition of decorative cherubs is also referred to in Temple’s work, where he remarks that in 1626, during the reformation of the Great Chamber, carved decorations of cherubs’ heads were incorporated into the room, including one on the central panel.12 Currently there are no traces of this intervention on the central panel, so if the description was accurate it must have been removed in a later


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Figure 3. C.J. Richardson, Chimney-piece of the Great Chamber, Charterhouse, c.1840, drawing on paper (coloured print), 37 × 25 cm. Image courtesy of The Charterhouse, London.

intervention, perhaps before or during the restoration of 1838, as there are no signs of the cherub in an image of the fireplace in 1840. Another important change seems to relate to the decoration of the overmantle. Currently, the cornice of the chimney-piece contains representations of the Four Elements on cartouches over a brown background.13 However, in a drawing by C.J. Richardson dated c.1840 it is possible to perceive only two scenes inside cartouches, one on each end, over a marble background instead of the current brown.14 This change must have taken place before 1843 because in a watercolour by G.F. Sargent dated that year the four cartouches can be perceived. Unfortunately, it is not possible to see exactly what these two first cartouches depicted (figure 3). This change in the decoration can be linked to one of the few documented restorations of the fireplace carried out in 1838, by which time the fireplace was obscured by dirt and the Great Chamber had fallen into a neglected state.15 The fireplace was cleaned and probably gilded and repainted in some

areas because after the restoration, ‘the chimneypiece one more displays its splendid decorations’.16 Were these two new cartouches introduced as part of the restoration or had they been there before but obscured by the dirt and pollution of London? When was the brown background introduced? The answers to these questions need further investigation in the future. However, Richardson’s drawing and its coloured version raises questions that further analysis can indeed clarify. According to this drawing, the chimney-piece had two cartouches over a marble background on the cornice that at some point were changed for four cartouches over a brown background. This marble ground was documented by Hassall in her paint analysis report which mentions that the brown overpaint that covers it was probably done in the 1950s restoration.17 But what about the cartouches? Cross-sections from this area would show whether the cartouches were painted on top of the marble or the brown background, whether all four had similar paint compositions and would better clarify when the changes took place.

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Figure 4. Photograph documenting the effects of the war on the chimney-piece, 1941, Charterhouse, tapestry room. London Metropolitan Archives, City of London.

The next documented restoration was undertaken as a consequence of the incendiary bombs that fell on Charterhouse in 1941, resulting in severe damage to the Master’s Court, the Great Staircase, the Great Hall and the Great Chamber (figure 4). The restoration of the building was carried out by Lord Mottistone and Paul Paget.18 The damage to the chimney-piece from the fire was extensive: the paint was first scorched and then damaged by water, causing splits, blisters and some joins between boards to open.19 The restoration was carried out between 1955 and 1958 by Robin Ashton, Sidney Parker and John O. Semmence.20 According to the documentation held at the Royal Institute of British Architects, the intervention required the consolidation of the support, paint and gold, removal of old restorations and pigmented varnishes, application of new bole and gold, reproduction of lost areas (including whole panels that were completely destroyed), varnishing and wax polishing.21 The recent conservation carried out by the Hamilton Kerr Institute (HKI), marking another chapter in the long history of the chimney-piece, was accomplished in two phases. The first was an in situ intervention in 2014 that focused on the consolidation of flaking paint, surface cleaning, retouching and varnishing of the whole chimneypiece. The second phase was dedicated to the central panel, which was taken to the HKI to be studied and restored. Once the flaking paint was secure, the removal of the overpaint and obscured tinted varnishes revealed the original work: a beautiful example of delicate and precious sgraffito for

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Figure 5. Detail of the scrollwork in the top right corner before conservation treatment (top image) and after conservation treatment, cleaning (bottom image).

the figures of the apostles, subtle scrollwork and meticulous arabesques. The conservation treatment has revealed a lighter and more delicate work that has been concealed and hidden for centuries by interventions, damages and fire, showing once again the high quality of the original (figure 5). This


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intervention has helped to reveal information on the date of the panel, technique, layer structure and pigments, even enabling the discovery of the sources of inspiration used by Buckett for the apostles. The Charterhouse: a monastery, city palace and hospital The origin of the Charterhouse began with the Plague of London in 1348, when Ralph Stratford, Bishop of London, set up a cemetery outside the walls of London in order to bury the victims of the Black Death.22 Soon after, Sir Walter de Manny purchased another piece of land, called Spital Croft, for an additional cemetery next to the first one. In 1349 Sir Walter built a chapel on this land intending to create a small college for priests.23 A Carthusian monastery was founded in March 1371 and by 1420 the priory was almost finished with the chapterhouse and the Great Cloister already complete.24 The London Charterhouse was the fourth monastery of the Carthusian order founded in England, and it prospered during the following centuries until the reign of Henry VIII. The monks refused to subscribe to the Act of Supremacy so some of them were executed and in 1537 the monastery was dissolved. The property was passed between different king’s men until Sir Edward North, the king’s sergeant-at-law and privy councillor,25 acquired the house on 14 April 1545.26 It was Lord North who began converting the old monastery into a modern mansion, and it is almost certain that he built the Great Chamber as well as the short addition on the north side of the room.27 The Great Chamber was constructed over the upper part of the old monk’s frater.28 Lord North died in 1564 and one year later his son sold the mansion to Thomas Howard, 4th Duke of Norfolk (1536–1572), the richest man in England during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, for £2500. The Duke of Norfolk continued to make improvements to the mansion, renamed Howard House.29 The interventions in the Great Chamber included the installation of stained glass and probably the ceiling, decorated with the Howard’s coat of arms with the ducal crown. At this point it seems that the Great Chamber was a single room called the drawing room.30 Based on stylistic grounds, the chimney-piece is probably from Norfolk’s time.31 The recurrent treason of Norfolk (first his attempted marriage to Mary Queen of Scots and his later participation in the Ridolfi Plot) ended with his execution in 1572 and the property was forfeited. However, Queen Elizabeth granted the house to the eldest son of the duke, Philip Howard, Earl of Arundel. The house then passed from him to his brother, Thomas Howard, who finally sold the Charterhouse to Thomas Sutton in 1611 for the price of £13,000.32 Thomas Sutton wanted to transform the mansion into ‘The Hospital of King James’, and for this purpose he appointed Francis Carter as architect and John Sergeantson of Coventry as

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chief mason.33 Work began after the death of Sutton on 12 December 1611, and the hospital and school opened in 1614.34 Between 1613 and 1616, the governors of the hospital carried out various repairs and maintenance work to the house. Francis Carter designed a plan for the conversion of the house, saving the Great Chamber, adjoining rooms and the long gallery for the governors’ use. The work involved building chimney-pieces, stairs, walls, doorways, windows, floors and roofing. At some point the Great Chamber was divided in two, and although this alteration was not mentioned in the building accounts it can be seen in Carter’s surviving floor plan (showing that each room has its own fireplace).35 The Great Chamber was used as the meeting room for the governors during the first years of the building’s conversion to a hospital and school, but soon it was considered too large for this purpose and in 1639 its use was substituted by other rooms located in the Master’s lodgings.36 Over time its use continued to decline (a suggestion was made in 1767 that the room should be transformed into an infirmary, although this was never implemented) until major renovations of all the buildings were undertaken following Edward Blore’s designs between 1826 and 1840.37 In this period the room was redecorated by Crace and Son, and Blore added the west window.38 In 1838 the room (and the chimney-piece) were renovated.39 More recently the Charterhouse was restored by Lord Mottistone and Paul Paget after suffering heavy damages during the Blitz in 1941. This intervention included not only reconstruction of the damaged areas of the house, but also the removal of nineteenth-century additions.40 Parts of the Great Chamber were also damaged in this bombing and during the restoration the ceiling and the chimney-piece were restored and the wall that separates the Great Chamber and the anteroom was moved, lengthening the Great Chamber.41 The chimney-piece in England The rivalry between the main personalities of England after the dissolution of the monasteries by Henry VIII was manifested in the erection of splendid mansions, and in this game of ostentation the chimney-piece (together with funeral monuments) offered an excellent medium for the display of prosperity and family distinctiveness.42 During the Elizabethan Renaissance a wide range of classical forms – rendered in stone, wood or plaster – were employed. Although there was no unified style, there are some shared characteristics. Normally these chimney-pieces consisted of two parts, each exhibiting a different architectural order, normally with a total height similar to that of the room. In the lower part, coupled columns over pedestals on either side of the fireplace supported an entablature, with the cornice as the mantle shelf.


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In the upper part, a lighter order was chosen for the columns (sometimes caryatides), and the space between them was decorated with the arms of the sovereign or the family arms and motto, at times enriched by gold and colour.43 It was a characteristic of the Netherlands to add some moral truth or maxim of worldly wisdom as well as biblical subjects to the decoration.44 These mottoes were known as ‘posies’.45 In this period, the most commonly used treatises of architecture were German rather than Italian.46 Oak was used for wooden chimney-pieces, and in order to protect the woodwork from the intense heat of the fire, an inner lining of stone was added, which could be plainly or richly decorated. The chimney-piece was treated as part of the wall panelling (commonly used in this period) and unified the decoration of the room. In some cases, the old Gothic fireplaces were preserved and new carved chimney-pieces erected around them.47 During the seventeenth century fashion changed and chimney-pieces became smaller with much simpler decoration. By the end of the century the chimney-piece was often no more than a simple stone or marble frame around the open fire. However, great rooms retained the need for large and elaborate chimney-pieces.48 Jacobean fireplaces were sometimes decorated with paint, like the chimney-pieces at Holland House, Charterhouse and the Kederminster Library in Langley Marish, Buckinghamshire.49 The Charterhouse example seems to fit with these exceptions, as its design is closer to a sixteenth-century style, similar to Holbein’s design at the British Museum.

Tracing Buckett’s commissions for Robert Cecil over six years provides a fascinating insight into Buckett’s impressively diverse range of artistic skills. The tasks Buckett completed for Cecil ranged from decorative commissions for interiors, including gilding interiors and furniture, designing patterns for cloth and large-scale wall paintings. But it would be the project of a new house, Hatfield House in Hertfordshire, which would become Buckett’s main and lasting commission from Cecil. Buckett was in charge of all the decorative work for the house, which was undertaken between December 1610 and November 1611, a large commission for which he received £417.56 The decoration of the chapel at Hatfield House is considered one of his best works. It includes a huge range of different creations from paintings of Christ, his life and the apostles, to frames, Cecil’s barge, the designs for the chapel interior, a stained glass window,57 and the gilding and decorating of the organ case in the Great Chamber58 with grotesques.59 Significantly, many of the themes and formulas that he used in the decoration of the chapel – such as The Annunciation (on canvas) and roundels with busts of apostles and prophets (on plaster)60 – can be seen again in the decoration of the Charterhouse overmantle a few years later. It is important to highlight his work on several chimney-places during this commission. He received £4 for ‘one greate frame and one chimney-piece’; £26 for a chimney-piece and frieze ‘with Red and goulde’ in the king’s bedchamber; another £26 for a chimney-piece ‘like stone and gilded’ and frieze; £31 for a chimney-piece, painting, gilding a frieze and a statue of the king in the Great Chamber (King James’ room); and £24 for some chimney-pieces with marbled columns and some gilding of the woodwork in the gallery.61 The huge commission of Hatfield House could not have been executed without a well-functioning workshop comprising several members. CroftMurray mentions some of Buckett’s apprentices or collaborators such as Edward Asgill, Edward Pierce and Francis Wethered, although whether they worked on the Hatfield project is unknown.62 All of this indicates that Buckett was already well qualified to handle a workshop, was a good businessman and had grasped a wide range of skills to complete and oversee such a huge commission. The death of Robert Cecil in May 1612 was not the end of Buckett’s working relationship with him as he received payments for heraldic banners, streamers and the staining of canopies for Cecil’s funeral.63 During the following years, Buckett worked for elite patrons mostly involving decorative work in their residences: for Robert Spencer, 1st Baron Spencer (1613),64 the Earl of Rutland (1619–20), Lionel Cranfield, 1st Earl of Middlesex (1623) and Sir Henry Hobart (1624).65 In 1634 he undertook decorative work at Holland House, the house of Henry Rich, 1st Earl of Holland, where he painted

Rowland Buckett: his works and patrons in the Jacobean era Rowland Buckett was the son of ‘Michael Buckett of London’,50 a shoemaker born in ‘Buckland’ (denizen on 30 April 1572), and Margaret, the daughter of William Glover of Warwickshire. He was baptised on 25 November 1571 at St Clement Danes, Westminster.51 Nothing is known about Buckett’s years as an apprentice.52 His earliest and most exotic documented work was a mechanical organ and clock presented by the artist himself in 1599 to Mehmed III from Queen Elizabeth I as part of a diplomatic mission to Istanbul. During his stay there, Buckett also painted a portrait of Queen Elizabeth for the sultan’s mother, probably commissioned by Henry Lello, the English ambassador.53 This commission was mentioned in a letter sent by Lello on 22 September 1599 to Sir Robert Cecil, who became one of Buckett’s most important patrons during the following years.54 Buckett’s first recorded commission from Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury, is dated October 1606 and included the painting of, among other things, 25 overmantles to chimneypieces at Theobalds Palace for which he was paid £40.55

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Figure 6. Central Panel from the Great Chamber’s Chimney-piece (figure 2), verso: before treatment.

the wainscot, overmantles, shields and ceiling for £221. Although only some authors66 locate Buckett working c.1631 in the Kederminster Library in Langley Marish, Buckinghamshire,67 it is certain that at some point before 1636 he was working for James Hay, 1st Earl of Carlisle,68 and George, Lord Goring.69 It was in 1626 that Buckett was documented at Charterhouse, where he would work until 1630, painting chimney-pieces in the Great Chamber and the Assembly Chamber.70 Buckett manifested his versatility as a decorative painter in other commissions such as that for Edward Alleyn, actor and founder of Dulwich College,71 in December 1617, when he ‘lymned’72 the title page of a book that was a present for Lady Suffolk.73 He continued working for Alleyn the following year, supplying materials,74 as he was paid ‘for 4 bookes off Large gowld […] more for 4 oz of blewe bise’75 and ‘for stuff used about y(e) chimney peec in y(e) dyning chamber’, where he used seven books of gold and 3 ounces of ‘bise’ (azurite), receiving payment of 32s.76 Buckett not only worked for the nobility – he was also an important figure in the civic life of London at that time. For example, he was employed on the decoration for the triumphal arch erected by the Dutch community to celebrate James I’s entry into London in March 1604,77 working for Daniel Papeler who was in charge of painting the woodwork of the arch.78 In 1620, he received a payment in connection with the Accession Day tilt (£7 5s)79 while a commission for the Middle Temple in 163380 allowed him to work on the production of a masque by the court writer James Shirley,81 titled The Triumph of Peace, which was sponsored by the Inns of Court and for which he was paid £272 17s for building six chariots.82 This was not Buckett’s first encounter with English Renaissance theatre83 as he had previously worked on a number of Lord Mayor’s shows in London.84 The famous Thomas Middleton, in his book The Triumphs of Honor and Industry published in 1617,85 thanked Buckett for his collaboration in the production.86

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An interesting aspect of Buckett’s work is revealed in his commissions as a restorer. For example, a bill from May 1607 shows that he returned to Theobalds Palace in order to paint its exterior and ‘for the Clensinge & vernshingue of a greate picture of the birth of Christ’.87 In 1614, Buckett was in charge of the cargo sent in the ship New Year’s Gift88 belonging to the East India Company which included, among other things, portrait and subject paintings (42 portraits and 28 mythological and religious paintings). He provided written advice relating to the transport, storing and repairing (if required) of the paintings during the trip.89 Buckett was member of the Painter-Stainers’ Company and is mentioned in the Company’s Minutes almost without any interruption from 1623 until one year before his death in 1639. During this time he served as a warden (1623–24), and as Master on two occasions (first in 1626–27 and later in 1630–31).90 Although the members of the Company were skilled specialists with excellent reputations in Europe, they did not restrict themselves to easel paintings as this was a specific job, practised mainly by foreigners, which focused on the portrait genre.91 As a member, one of Buckett’s tasks was the supervision of the works undertaken by the Company in order to maintain production standards.92 The exact date of Rowland Buckett’s death is not clear. It appears that he had some health problems in May 1638, and he did not attend the Company’s meetings after July 1638. His last will was made just a week after this meeting although it was not proved until 6 November 1639. The last mention of him was on 8 July 1642 when his apprentice Edward Asgill was made free of the Company.93 Although Buckett is almost unknown nowadays (probably because of the decorative character of his works) he was extremely well regarded in his time, receiving illustrious commissions from many of the most important people of his age. Over his long career, Buckett displayed a dizzying variety of crafts and workmanship, passing easily between painting, limning and gilding chairs and overmantles to large and complex decorative projects. His versatility was not an unusual quality for craftsmen of his period, when artistic work more commonly involved a variety of different skills and collaborations between diverse artists.94 However Buckett’s proficiency in these fields is self-evident from the many commissions he received, which would have required a busy workshop and good relationships with other craftsmen such as joiners, who would have supplied the woodwork. Technical study of the panel This article aims to understand the materials and the techniques used in the creation of the central panel in order to contextualise it within the processes of seventeenth-century painting and reconsider


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the case for Buckett’s authorship. This has been achieved by investigating the panel using different analytical techniques such as dendrochronology, infrared reflectography (IRR) and X-radiography, and analysed through the taking of samples for cross-sections and polarised light microscopy (PLM). The panel The panel measures 200.1 cm wide and 135.7 cm high and is made of six horizontally aligned oak boards 1.1 cm thick. On the front, a moulding structure has been attached, overlapping the edges and dividing the panel into five sections with four spandrels and a central oval. On the back are seven vertical bars, probably later additions (figure 6). The results of the dendrochronological study undertaken by Ian Tyers reveal that all the horizontal boards derive from the same tree, which originated from the eastern Baltic area of Europe, most probably Poland or countries east or northeast of it.95 As a consequence of deforestation and timber shortage in Western Europe during the late Middle Ages, the importation of Baltic oak was established as a lucrative trade from the fourteenth century until about 1650–70. The use of oak in England was popular due to its two main characteristics: it is a very durable wood and easy to split by cleaving.96 The interpretation of the dates for the boards of the panel indicate that the tree was probably felled after c.1598 and used before c.1630.97 It is plausible that the six boards are part of a single piece of wainscot, which would have yielded boards measuring c.2 m long, at least 27.5 cm wide and c.7.5 cm thick.98 The average size of an oak board from the Baltic region in the second half of the sixteenth century was 304 cm or more in length and 45.72 cm wide.99 Of the panel’s six boards, the central four share a similar width while the outer two are narrower. Together, the outer boards are wider than one central board, so it is probable that the available board width was not enough to make up the dimensions with five boards instead of six.100 All of the boards used in the panel taper slightly over their length. The central boards are arranged so that their tapers are in the same direction, while the outer boards are positioned to counter the narrowing of the central boards. The grain runs towards the centre line of the panel. These features are typical of panel construction in the late sixteenth and seventeenth century.101 Another feature present in the construction of the panel, typical of the seventeenth century (although it can be seen from time to time in panels dating from the middle of the sixteenth century), is the use of tongue and groove joints (figure 7).102 A further characteristic of the panel’s construction, which has been highlighted by the dendrochronological study, is that one board was joined unsuccessfully in the first attempt and had to be trimmed back by around 20 mm before being joined correctly.103

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Figure 7. Detail of the tongue and groove joints, the method used for connecting the boards where one edge of the board is grooved and the other flanged with an extended edge.


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Most seventeenth-century workshops in London were (probably) small, placed within the master’s residence, and formed of one or two apprentices and hired journeymen when necessary. Decorated woodwork was made to order, with the purchaser sometimes responsible for supplying materials (wood, glue, metal fittings), and paying only for the craftsman’s time. In complex commissions with different workshops working together, it is not always clear which of the craftsmen involved oversaw the commission and bought in the other skills needed, but in the case of Buckett it seems clear that he personally oversaw the entire project, entrusting the woodwork to a joinery workshop.105 This division of labour can be seen in the commission at Holland House, where he received a payment for making, carving and gilding 10 chairs.106 As he was paid for the work, the making and carving was probably entrusted to a workshop from the Faculty; his workshop would later paint and gild the pieces. The same pattern can be seen between 1634 and 1636 and appears to be a common practice for Buckett.107

Figure 8. Cross-section taken from the black scrollwork of the right lower spandrel with evidence of the chalk ground (a), bole (b), gilding (c) and paint (d).

Figure 9. Cross-section taken from the external scrollwork on the top right spandrel with evidence of the chalk ground (a), bole (b), gilding (c), isolating layer (d) and the azurite paint layer (e).

Figure 10. Cross-section taken from the figure of the unicorn confirming bole (a), gilding (b), paint layer – blue and white pigment mixture (c), black paint layer (d), and layers of varnish and dirt (e).

The high quality of the panel, both in its materials and construction, leads to the conclusion that for his commissions Buckett would have needed not only the help of his workshop but also that of a joiner’s workshop, as joiners produced wainscots, fixed woodwork and temporary architecture besides moveable products such as beds, tables, chests, chairs and stools, cupboards, buffets and boxes. Taking into account the quality of the panel and Buckett’s standing in the Painter-Stainers’ Company, he probably relied on the Faculty of Joyners and Ceilers or Carvers of London, an official guild that maintained high standards.104

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Preparatory layers and gilding The analysis of the support has provided strong evidence for the boards’ felling date and origin, but this does not mean that the painting is necessarily contemporary to the panel structure. In order to obtain information that could help in dating the painting, several samples were taken from the panel and studied as cross-sections. They were compared to the results provided previously by Hassall in her report The Great Chamber Fireplace, which includes work on the rest of the chimney-piece. The panel was prepared for painting with a single, thick layer of chalk (figure 8). Over the chalk ground is a brown clay-based layer, most probably bole, used as a preparatory layer for gilding. The bole allows the gold to be adhered and burnished, and imparts a warm, rich tone to the gold. On top of the bole, the panel was gilded, probably using the water-gilding method. Water gilding was normally chosen for furniture and other portable objects, while oil gilding was reserved for architectural decoration. Water gilding was more expensive and time-consuming in its execution than oil gilding, but offered a finer and deeply burnished effect.108 The large areas of gilding and its delicate execution would have required an experienced craftsman. Buckett was a seasoned and expert decorative painter, gilding being one of his main tasks. His skills allowed him to carry out all kinds of complex and varied commissions including, for example, decorating the interior of the New Exchange109 (a commercial centre outside the city walls of London),110 gilding bedsteads and leather hangings,111 painting and gilding the great clock dial at Dulwich College112 and, alongside another painter, gilding an East India Company ship, the Moon.113


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Painting technique The painted decoration of the panel was applied directly on top of the gold layer using two different techniques. The apostles in the spandrels and the scrollwork were executed in sgraffito technique. The paint was applied on top of the gilding and then scraped away before completely dry, exposing the gold underneath to give a very refined and delicate effect. On the other hand, the arabesques on the oval or the foliage were painted directly on top of the gold using a very thin brush. For the panel, black (bone or char black) was chosen for the apostles and the scrollwork decorated with delicate foliage, pure azurite was used for the scrollwork of the moulding structure, and crimson lake was employed for the foliage in the oval area.114 A cross-section taken from the scrollwork on the moulding shows that an intermediate layer was applied between the gold and the azurite (figure 9). This is probably a varnish or oil layer used as an isolating layer for the gilding in order to facilitate adhesion of the pigment to the gold. In cross-section, the azurite particles are small with a low colour intensity, indicating that the pigment used in the scrollwork was of poor quality. The areas of azurite have discoloured over time, due mainly to the penetration and discoloration of varnish layers between the particles of azurite.115 In addition, some particles of azurite have darkened as a consequence of the fire during the war, as the pigment turns black when it is heated above 300°C.116 The azurite has a coarse texture which can be seen with the naked eye, and the contrast between the smooth black scrollwork and the rough surface of the azurite scrollwork is obvious. The rest of the decoration was painted using well-ground pigments. It is possible to see with the naked eye incisions made on the surface of the gold which sketch the pattern for the foliage and decoration, although it was not always followed. While pure pigments were used in areas of sgraffito (for example, pure vermilion was used for the red on the shield), in other areas of the panel it is more common to find mixtures of pigments, including lead white mixed with indigo (identified using PLM) on the unicorn (figure 10), or a mixture of red lead and vermilion for some of the leaves. In all the samples studied, the paint was applied in a single layer showing an expedient technique, as might be expected from a skilled and busy decorator. As no instrumental organic analysis was carried out, it is only possible to speculate on the medium used. It is most likely to have been executed in oil, except for areas painted with azurite, which were probably bound in animal glue, a typical procedure employed when azurite is used without other pigments.117 The panel in relation to the overmantle Technical analysis has revealed that the panel and the rest of the overmantle are not only similar in

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Figure 11. Detail of the right panel from the overmantle of the Great Chamber’s chimney-piece showing similar decoration to that on the central panel.

their aesthetic, but also have pigments, preparation and painting techniques in common. Comparing the technical data from this study with Hassall’s report, the panel and the rest of the overmantle have the same ground layers (chalk and brown clay), are both water-gilded, share the same pigments, and have areas executed in sgraffito technique.118 Both parts of the overmantle share stylistically similar scrollwork patterns, foliage and arabesque decoration combined with figures (figure 11). These similarities lend credence to the supposition that the overmantle and central panel were executed at the same time and most probably by the same workshop. In light of these findings, a dendrochronological study could be instrumental in confirming this theory. It has to be concluded that the idea of Buckett as a restorer or overpainting of the panel to readapt it should be discounted, as the panel and the rest of the overmantle share the same ground layers, water gilding and decoration, and no traces of an earlier design have been found using infrared photography. The overmantle in relation to the rest of the chimney-piece In the absence of a dendrochronological study of the entire fireplace that could provide a wider chronological context, it is not possible to confer an


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accurate date on the fire surround; only a stylistic approach can provide clues to its origin. While the panel and overmantle share stylistic and technical similarities, the opposite is true for the overmantle and the fire surround underneath. The wood of the fireplace surround was coated with a thin layer of chalk, but instead of a second ground layer of brown clay, a double oil ground has been applied. The lower ground layer is pale pink, composed of lead white mixed with a little red ochre and a few particles of red lead. The upper ground layer is a light grey colour, comprising lead white and carbon black. Additionally, almost no gilding was used – in the areas where it is present the gold layer was applied on top of a layer of oil mordant mixed with pure yellow ochre. Even though there are some stylistic similarities between the scrollwork on the panel and rest of the fire surround, this similarity is only a shallow imitation as no gold leaf has been found on the surround; rather black and yellow pigments were used to imitate the sgraffito decoration on the overmantle,119 suggesting that the overmantle was produced before the fireplace. It is also possible, however, that the fireplace predated the overmantle, and once this was in place the fireplace was adapted to unite both parts. The pigments used in the fire surround differ from those of the panel. Hassall’s cross-section analysis showed the use of indigo, red and yellow ochres, umbers, lead white and black. The fire surround is heavily repainted and, except for the plinth on the right side, almost no original decoration is visible. Despite the lack of technical similarities, there are a couple of points linking the overmantle with the fire surround in terms of its date and execution. Firstly, according to Hassall, the stylised brushwork with bold dabs of paint present on the original marble imitation paint on the plinth is typical of the seventeenth century.120 Secondly, the use of scoring lines in the gesso to mark out the design on the plinth is also seen on the central panel delineating the scrollwork and the foliage decoration.

Rowland Buckett and his use of prints Although few examples of Buckett’s work survive today, those still extant show clear influences of continental prints and engravings. For example, the renowned Dutch chamber organ bought in 1609 by Robert Cecil was decorated with grotesques after prints by Lucas Kilian.124 The composition of this decoration derives from a plate in Kilian’s Newes Gradesca Büchlein, published in Augsburg in 1607.125 This not only shows the use of continental prints as patterns in England, but also the speed at which these prints were disseminated throughout Europe, as only two years after its publication in Germany it was already being used in London. Buckett’s numerous works at Hatfield House show more examples of the use of prints as a source of inspiration and designs. The depictions of the apostles (feigned roundels on plaster) executed in the chapel were based on a set of plates by Jan and Raphael Sadeler I, and the image of St John the Evangelist (also on plaster) was derived from a series by Hendrick Goltzius of 1589. Additionally, in The Annunciation to the Shepherds, a large-scale painted canvas from the chapel, two figures are taken directly from a print of The Annunciation to the Shepherds by Jan Sadeler I after Jacopo Bassano.126 If we assume that Buckett worked in the Kederminster Library in Langley Marish, Buckinghamshire, there is another example of the extensive use of prints as design sources. One of the cartouches was copied after a design by Jacob Floris, the image of three masks derived from Cornelis Floris (work extended by the engraver Adam Scultori), the figures of Mars and Mercury were based on prints by Jacob Matham after Hendrick Goltzius, and the oval central panel has a strong resemblance to The Planetary Deities, engraved by Crispijn de Passe after designs by Maarten de Vos.127 Philips Galle and Anthonie Blocklandt van Montfoort: the Antwerp connection The restoration of the central panel highlighted the depiction of the apostles and provided a greater opportunity to study them. Thanks to this research, it has been possible to discover for the first time that the composition of the apostles was adapted by Buckett from four plates designed by Anthonie Blocklandt van Montfoort in 1574, which were published a year later by the engraver Philips Galle. The four evangelists were originally paintings by Blocklandt van Montfoort (dated to 1574) and are currently in the Utrecht Central Museum. They are grisaille oil paintings on paper layered onto a panel support, with dimensions of 21 × 30 cm.128 They share a similar design: within an oval each evangelist is seated on a cloud with a landscape below, holding a book or books in his hands (except St John, who holds a stone plate), and at each side the correspondent tetramorph is shown. The prints

Stylistic aspects and sources of inspiration The decorative style of buildings in the Jacobean period developed as a consequence of the patronage given by Henry VIII to foreign artists and craftsmen such as Holbein and Anthony Toto. Toto was the first sergeant-painter of foreign origin, and his grotesque decoration and heraldic motives were elegantly executed, showing skill, liveliness and detail, achieved in a Mannerist style similar to that which Buckett would later develop.121 Buckett used grotesques frequently as a decorative motif in his works. This kind of grotesque design was known in the period as ‘antic work’.122 Quoting Croft-Murray, Buckett ‘was capable of quite delicate painting, and was at his best in Italianate grotesque’ although ‘large figure subjects […] were beyond his powers’.123

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Figure 12. Anthonie Blocklandt van Montfoort, The Evangelist Saint John, 1574, grisaille oil painting on a paper on panel support, 21 × 30 cm, Centraal Museum, Utrecht. © Utrecht, Centraal Museum.

Figure 15. Anthonie Blocklandt van Montfoort, The Evangelist Saint Mark, 1574, grisaille oil painting on a paper on panel support, 21 × 30 cm, Centraal Museum, Utrecht. © Utrecht, Centraal Museum.

Figure 13. Philips Galle print (after Blocklandt van Montfoort), The Evangelist Saint John, 1575, intaglio and ink, 26 × 37 cm, The British Museum, London. © The Trustees of the British Museum.

Figure 16. Philips Galle (after Blocklandt van Montfoort), The Evangelist Saint Mark, 1575, intaglio and ink, 26 × 37 cm, National Library of Spain, Madrid. Piece and image property of the Biblioteca Nacional de España.

Figure 14. Detail of The Evangelist Saint John from Charterhouse’s panel.

Figure 17. Detail of The Evangelist Saint Mark from Charterhouse’s panel.

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Figure 18. Anthonie Blocklandt van Montfoort, The Evangelist Saint Luke, 1574, grisaille oil painting on a paper on panel support, 21 × 30 cm, Centraal Museum, Utrecht. © Utrecht, Centraal Museum.

Figure 21. Anthonie Blocklandt van Montfoort, The Evangelist Saint Matthew, 1574, grisaille oil painting on a paper on panel support, 21 × 30 cm, Centraal Museum, Utrecht. © Utrecht, Centraal Museum.

Figure 19. Philips Galle (after Blocklandt van Montfoort), The Evangelist Saint Luke, 1575, intaglio and ink, 26 × 37 cm, National Library of Spain, Madrid. Piece and image property of the Biblioteca Nacional de España.

Figure 22. Philips Galle (after Blocklandt van Montfoort), The Evangelist Saint Matthew, 1575, intaglio and ink, 26 × 37 cm, National Library of Spain, Madrid. Piece and image property of the Biblioteca Nacional de España.

Figure 20. Detail of The Evangelist Saint Luke from Charterhouse’s panel.

Figure 23. Detail of The Evangelist Saint Matthew from Charterhouse’s panel.

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by Galle follow these paintings very closely (figures 12–23). Philips Galle was a printmaker born in Haarlem in 1537. In 1570 he moved to Antwerp, where he opened his own workshop. He was highly productive and employed several draughtsmen to create designs for prints of subjects stipulated by Galle including Anthonie Blocklandt van Montfoort, Hans Bol, Marcus Gheeraerts, Gerard Groenning, Johannes Stradanus, Maarten de Vos and Hans Vredeman de Vries.129 Galle’s subjects were marked by their variety, ranging from portraits of scholars to religious works, as well as designs for ornamentation, triumphal arches, emblems and cartography.130 Van Montfoort was born in Utrecht in 1533–34, and his collaboration with Galle took place during the latter’s early years in Antwerp.131 Galle’s first engraving after one of Blocklandt van Montfoort’s designs was made in 1571. After travelling to Italy in 1572, he introduced more elegant and contemporary compositions to Galle’s workshop style. Their collaboration continued until Blocklandt van Montfoort’s death in 1583 and was characterised by the development of religious iconography.132 Conclusion As a result of the technical, stylistic and historical research of the central panel from the overmantle of the decorated chimney-piece of the Great Chamber at the Charterhouse, several important questions concerning the authorship, date and relationship to the rest of the fireplace can be clarified. The dendrochronological study provided felling and probable usage dates of the panel of c.1598 and c.1630 respectively. These dates fit perfectly with the alleged date of 1626 for the panel’s creation, listed on surviving Charterhouse bills and inscribed on the back of the panel. This date is further supported by the drawings and prints dating from 1574 on which the apostles are based, and the historical information on the decorative changes to the Great Chamber introduced by the governors in 1626, which included the addition of decorative cherubs and a new central panel for the overmantle. This provides a very strong case for the dating of this panel, particularly as it draws on information from several different sources, therefore the theory that the panel was a work dating from the time of Thomas Howard, 4th Duke of Norfolk (1536– 1572) can be disregarded. This article has similarly brought to light several strands of research supporting attribution of the panel to Rowland Buckett. If we can date the central panel to 1626, this strengthens the attribution to Buckett because it is known that in that year he was paid for (expensive) work on the chimney-piece. The idea of Buckett being merely the restorer of the fireplace seems unlikely when taking into account the payments he received for the work executed in 1626. As the panel’s creation has been dated to correspond with the payments made to Buckett

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in 1626, it is possible to compare the value of the work done with other commissions carried out by Buckett. The payment for the work on the chimneypiece was £50, an exorbitant amount for a simple restoration in comparison with other payments for similar works, averaging around £26. It is therefore more likely that Buckett provided a larger part than just one panel of the overmantle. Apart from the work at Charterhouse, it is recorded that he/his workshop produced 25 overmantles for chimney-pieces at Theobalds Palace, four chimney-pieces at Hatfield House and an unknown number of overmantles at Holland House. To this list should be added the chimney-piece at Kederminster Library because although there is a lack of documentation linking the work to Buckett, stylistically it is very similar to that at Charterhouse. All of this demonstrates that Rowland Buckett was a highly regarded and sought-after craftsman when it came to painting and gilding chimney-pieces, making him the obvious person to turn to for the decoration of the Charterhouse fireplace. In addition, the use of prints as a source for the apostle roundels should also be noted in the decoration of the Charterhouse chimney-piece. Although the use of prints as patterns for decoration and compositions was widespread in his time, it is a recurrent theme in Buckett’s preserved works. The choice of subject is also characteristic of Buckett; his work at Hatfield House also included religious themes, such as the Annunciation and the Apostleship, and the use of fantastic figures and arabesques are found again in the overmantle at Charterhouse. While the architectural appearance of the fireplace is closer to the style of the sixteenth century than the unpretentious style of the seventeenth century, during the latter century large and elaborate chimney-pieces were built if the circumstances required them. It is perhaps not purely a coincidence that other examples of this type of painted chimney-piece are directly or very closely related with works or places where Buckett painted, such as Holland House or Kederminster Library. Taking into consideration the different aspects of this research, the most plausible explanation for the origin of the fireplace is that the governors of Charterhouse – as a result of the coronation of the new King Charles I in 1625 and as part of other improvements at the hospital – decided to remodel the old chimney-piece and simultaneously introduce Thomas Sutton’s coat of arms.133 All the evidence points to Buckett being responsible for the creation of a new overmantle to be fitted above the existing fireplace. This theory would explain the similarities in style, technique and materials between the central panel and the rest of the overmantle, and at the same time the disparities between the overmantle as a whole and the fireplace below. The conservation project on the central panel has made it possible to draw these conclusions – this work has not only recovered aspects of the panel’s


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artistic quality but technical and historical studies have helped to expand our knowledge on the materials, techniques and chronology of the panel and discover the engravings used as an inspiration for its decoration. This conservation work, coupled with research, has shed light on the importance of both Rowland Buckett and the Charterhouse panel in the seventeenth century, veiled by overpaint, damaged by fire and degraded by the passing of time.

19. Temple 2010 (note 7), pp. 149–52. 20. Their names are written on the back of the panel together with the date. ‘RESTORED AFTER/ THE “BLITZ” BY/ A. ROBIN ASHTON. RESTORER. / SIDNEY PARKER. CRAFSMAN. / JOHN. O. SEMMENCE. PAINTER. / WORKING FROM 1951 UNTIL 1958’. 21. Seely and Paget Papers, correspondence in Box 39, Royal Institute of British Architects (unpublished papers). 22. Temple 2010 (note 7), p. 18. 23. Temple 2010 (note 7), p. 18. 24. Temple 2010 (note 7), p. 21. 25. W. Thornbury, ‘The Charterhouse’, in Old and New London, vol. 2, London 1878, pp. 380–404, http:// www.british-history.ac.uk/old-new-london/vol2/ pp380-404 (accessed 25 August 2015). 26. W.F. Taylor, The Charterhouse of London: Monastery, Palace and Thomas Sutton’s Foundation, London 1876, p. 175. 27. Temple 2010 (note 7), p. 39. 28. Oswald 1959 (note 18), p. 22. 29. Taylor 1876 (note 26), pp. 178–79. 30. Shuffrey 1912 (note 14), p. 117. 31. Temple 2010 (note 7), p. 44. 32. Taylor 1876 (note 26), pp. 186–89 and Temple 2010 (note 7), p. 59. 33. Temple 2010 (note 7), p. 59. 34. Oswald 1959 (note 18), p. 8. 35. Temple 2010 (note 7), pp. 62–66. 36. R. Griffiths, Conservation Management Plan, Richard Griffiths Architects, unpublished report, November 2012, pp. 23–24. 37. Griffiths 2012 (note 36), pp. 23–24. 38. Griffiths 2012 (note 36), pp. 23–24. 39. Charterhouse 1839 (note 15), p. 509. 40. Oswald 1959 (note 18), pp. 3, 39, 40. 41. Griffiths 2012 (note 36), pp. 23–24. 42. Shuffrey 1912 (note 14), p. 91; E. Wilhide, The Fireplace, London 1994, p. 23. 43. Shuffrey 1912 (note 14), p. 92. 44. Shuffrey 1912 (note 14), p. 93. 45. Wilhide 1994 (note 42), p. 23. 46. Shuffrey 1912 (note 14), p. 101. 47. Shuffrey 1912 (note 14), pp. 107–8. 48. G. Campbell (ed.), The Grove Encyclopedia of Decorative Arts. Volume 1: Aaalto to Kyoto Pottery, New York 2006, p. 233. 49. Shuffrey 1912 (note 14), p. 117. 50. Rowland’s grandfather was Michaell Buckett, born in Hedleborow (today Heidelberg), Germany. E. CroftMurray, Decorative Painting in England 1537–1837: Early Tudor to Sir James Thornhill, vol. 1, London 1962, p. 194. 51. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 44. 52. Croft-Murray 1962 (note 50), p. 194. 53. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 44. 54. Croft-Murray 1962 (note 50), p. 194. 55. Town 2014 (note 1), pp. 44–45. 56. Although some of the bills are also dated 1612 for which see Croft-Murray 1962 (note 50), p. 195; see also Town 2014 (note 1), p. 45. 57. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 45. 58. ‘Cecil papers: 1611’, in G. Dyfnallt Owen (ed.), Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House. Volume 24: Addenda, 1605–1668, London 1976, pp. 194–210. 59. The organ was purchased from a Dutchman in 1609 for £1,084; N. Pevsner and B. Cherry, The Buildings

Acknowledgements

The author would like to thank Edward Town for sharing his knowledge and information, Lucy Wrapson and Spike Bucklow for their assistance and Sarah Bayliss for her comments and corrections to an earlier version of the manuscript. Special thanks are extended to Rupert Featherstone, Chris Titmus and Dominic Tickell.

Notes

1. E. Town, ‘A biographical dictionary of London painters, 1547–1625’, The Walpole Society, vol. 76, 2014, p. 46. 2. London Metropolitan Archives, ACC/1876/AR/3/7a. 3. W.C. Blanchard, Charterhouse, Its Foundation and History, with a Brief Memoir of the Founder, Thomas Sutton (1849), London 1849, pp. 113–14. http:// babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=hvd.3204408120678 1;view=1up;seq=8 (accessed 8 November 2015). 4. C.R. Booth Barrett, In Pen and Ink, London 1895, p. 36. https://archive.org/details/charterhouseinp00 barrgoog (accessed 8 November 2015). 5. B. Cherry and N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: London 4 North, New Haven and London 1999, p. 618. 6. ‘Finsbury’, in An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in London, Royal Commission on Historic Monuments, vol. 2, West London, London, 1925, pp. 15–31. http://www.british-history.ac.uk/ rchme/london/vol2/pp15-31 (accessed 8 November 2015). 7. P. Temple, The Charterhouse, Survey of London, Monograph 18, New Haven and London 2010, pp. 149–52. 8. Temple 2010 (note 7), pp. 149–52. 9. S. Porter, The London Charterhouse: A History of Thomas Sutton’s Charity, London 2009, p. 27. 10. Porter 2009 (note 9), p. 27. 11. R. Smithe, Historical Account of Charter-house: compiled from the works of Hearne and Bearcroft, Harleian, Cottonian, and Private Mss. and from other authentic sources, London 1808, p. 265. 12. Temple 2010 (note 7), p. 145. 13. Royal Commission on Historic Monuments 1925 (note 6), pp. 15–31. 14. L.A. Shuffrey, The English Fireplace: A History of the Development of the Chimney, Chimney-piece and Firegrate with their Accessories, From the Earlier Times to the Beginning of the XIXth Century, London 1912, plate XLVII. 15. Charterhouse, The Carthusian: A Miscellany in Prose and Verse, vol. II, London 1839, p. 509. 16. Charterhouse 1839 (note 15), p. 509. 17. C. Hassall, The Great Chamber Fireplace, Charterhouse, unpublished report no. B149, London 2013, p. 10. 18. A. Oswald, The London Charterhouse Restored, London 1959, p. 3.

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of England: Hertfordshire, New Haven and London 2002, p. 169. 60. E. Auerbach and C. Kingsley Adams, Paintings and Sculpture at Hatfield House, London 1971, pp. 103–5. 61. Croft-Murray 1962 (note 50), p. 195. 62. Croft-Murray 1962 (note 50), p. 194. 63. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 45. 64. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 45. 65. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 46. 66. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 46. 67. There is no documentation to prove this, but based on stylistic similarities it bears a strong resemblance to the fireplace at Sutton’s Charterhouse. The frieze of the chimney-piece was decorated with grotesques in the style of Lucas Kilian; A. Wells-Cole, Art and Decoration in Elizabethan and Jacobean England: The Influence of Continental Prints, 1558–1625, New Haven and London 1997, p. 216. It is also remarkable that the gold and black columns of Kederminster Library’s chimney-piece are quite similar to the columns at Charterhouse’s fireplace. 68. Croft-Murray 1962 (note 50), p. 194. 69. It is known because in 1632–33 a commission from the Painter-Stainers’ Company inspected Buckett’s work at the house of Lord Goring in Westminster; Town 2014 (note 1), p. 46. 70. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 46. 71. A. Borg, The History of the Worshipful Company of Painters, Huddersfield 2005, p. 45. 72. The title ‘limner’, as Buckett is referred to from time to time, is a corruption of ‘illuminator’; W. Gaunt, A Concise History of English Painting, London 1976, p. 25. 73. A. Reid and R. Maniura, Edward Alleyn Elizabethan Actor, Jacobean Gentleman, London 1994, pp. 36–37. 74. In the early seventeenth century painters probably acquired their materials at an apothecary’s shop, as most pigments were considered as drugs. But, as Buckett and other painters (several sixteenth-century serjeant-painters are known to have supplied materials) evidence, this was not the only source; J. Kirby, ‘The painter’s trade in the seventeenth century: theory and practice’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin: Paintings in Antwerp and London-Rubens and Van Dyck, vol. 20, 1999, p. 33. 75. W. Young, The History of Dulwich College, vol. 2, Edinburgh 1889, p. 114. 76. Young 1889 (note 75), p. 114. 77. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 44. 78. J. Schlueter, ‘Droeshout’, Print Quarterly, vol. 27, no. 3, 2010, pp. 253–62, esp. p. 253. 79. D.M. Bergeron and K.D. Levin, ‘The triumphs of honor and industry’, in G. Taylor and J. Lavagnino (eds), Thomas Middleton: The Collected Works, Oxford 2007, p. 1262. It is not known what he did, but normally on these occasions painters had to embellish escutcheons, coats, banners and pavilions, as well as painting shields; J. Murrell, ‘John Guillim’s book: a heraldic painter’s vade mecum’, The Walpole Society, vol. 57, 1993–94, p. 4. 80. C. Porter, Making and Unmaking in Early Modern English Drama: Spectators, Aesthetics and Incompletion, Manchester 2013, p. 20. 81. H. Tracey, Pageantry and Power: A Cultural History of the Early Modern Lord Mayor’s Show, 1585– 1639, Manchester 2010, pp. 208–9. 82. Bergeron and Levin 2007 (note 79), p. 1262.

83. Porter 2013 (note 80), p. 20. 84. These shows were staged annually in order to celebrate the new lord mayor and were a mixture of tableaux, music, dance, speeches, fireworks and giants on stilts; Tracey 2010 (note 81), pp. 208–9. 85. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 46. 86. ‘The credit of which workmanship I must justly lay upon the deserts of Master Rowland Bucket, chief master of the work’, together with Master Henry Wilde and Master Jacob Challoner, ‘partners in the business’; Bergeron and Levin 2007 (note 79), pp. 1262–63. 87. Town 2014 (note 1), pp. 44–45. 88. This was the chief vessel, and it was accompanied by other three ships, the Solomon, the Hector and the Merchant’s Hope; T. Screech, ‘Pictures (the most part bawdy): the Anglo-Japanese painting trade in the early 1600s’, The Art Bulletin, vol. 87, no. 1, 2005, p. 54. 89. Town 2014 (note 1), pp. 45–46. 90. Croft-Murray 1962 (note 50), p. 194. 91. Murrell 1993–94 (note 79), pp. 5–6. 92. For example, in 1630 he was in charge, together with Paul Isaacson and Martin Hall, of the supervision of the works on the Company’s Hall (Croft-Murray 1962 (note 50), p. 194) and with Paul and Henry Isaacson in 1632 supervised the work by Mathew Gooderick and Edward Pierce (one of Buckett’s assistants) in the church of St Paul’s, Covent Garden (Borg 2005 (note 71), p. 44). 93. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 47. 94. Porter 2013 (note 80), p. 20. 95. I. Tyers, ‘Report 465. Tree-ring analysis of the Charterhouse overmantle’, Dendrochronological Consultancy Limited, April 2015, p. 6 (unpublished report held at the Hamilton Kerr Institute). 96. T. Wazny, ‘The origin, assortments and transport of Baltic timber’, in C. van de Velde, H. Beeckman, J. van Acker and F. Verhaeghe (eds), Constructing Wooden Images. Proceedings of the Symposium on the Organization of Labour and Working Practices of Late Gothic Carved Altarpieces in the Low Countries, Brussels 25–26 October 2002, Brussels, 2005, pp. 115–26. 97. Tyers 2015 (note 95), p. 7. 98. For the measurements see Tyers 2015 (note 95), p. 7. In documents from the period, the term wagenschot in Dutch and ‘wainscot’ in English was normally used to describe oak boards or planks (quarter-sawn or cleaved), rather than beams or other thicker pieces. Kirby 1999 (note 74), p. 17. 99. Wazny 2005 (note 96), pp. 115–26. 100. Tyers 2015 (note 95), p. 4. 101. Tyers 2015 (note 95), p. 4. 102. Tyers 2015 (note 95), p. 4. 103. Tyers 2015 (note 95), p. 7. 104. There were other joiners in London, such as the Office of Works, in charge of the furniture for the royal household as well as a group of Northern European immigrants working in the suburbs who were not members of the Faculty; N. Humphrey, ‘Furniture and woodwork in Tudor England: native practices, methods, materials and context’, in Making Art in Tudor Britain, Abstracts from Academic Workshops, National Portrait Gallery, 2007–08. http://www.npg. org.uk/research/programmes/making-art-in-tudorbritain/workshops/workshop-2-abstract-4.php (accessed 10 April 2016). 105. Humphrey 2007–08 (note 104).

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106. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 47. 107. When working for William, 2nd Lord Spencer, he received £68 10s 3d for supplying ‘guilt leather hangings and guilt stools and Chaires for the parlour’ at Althorp; Croft-Murray 1962 (note 50), p. 194. 108. I. Bristow, Interior House-painting Colours and Technology, 1615–1840, New Haven and London 1996, pp. 127–30. 109. In the New Exchange he carried out unspecified gilding for £10 2s; Croft-Murray 1962 (note 50), p. 195. 110. Bergeron and Levin 2007 (note 79), p. 1262. 111. In 1609 he gilded a bedstead and some leather hangings probably destined for Cecil’s country house at Cranborne Manor in Dorset; Town 2014 (note 1), p. 45. 112. It was 1618 and Buckett was paid £1 10s by Edward Alleyn; Young 1889 (note 75), p. 114. 113. In 1618 Buckett was again working for the East India Company, and he received a payment of £100 for this work; see ‘East Indies, China and Japan: February 1618 (16th–end)’, in W. Noel Sainsbury (ed), Calendar of State Papers Colonial, East Indies, China and Japan, vol. 3, 1617–1621, London 1870, pp. 130–35. 114. Hassall 2013 (note 17), p. 2. 115. Hassall 2013 (note 17), p. 4. 116. R.J. Gettens and E.W. FitzHugh, ‘Azurite and blue verditer’, in R.L. Feller (ed.), Artists’ Pigments: A Handbook of their History and Characteristics, vol. 2, Washington DC 1986, p. 26. 117. Hassall 2013 (note 17), p. 4. 118. Hassall 2013 (note 17), p. 6. 119. Hassall 2013 (note 17), p. 7. 120. Hassall 2013 (note 17), p. 8. 121. J. H. Astington, English Court Theatre, 1558–1642, Cambridge 1999, p. 129.

122. Porter 2013 (note 80), p. 20. 123. Croft-Murray 1962 (note 50), p. 32. 124. Wells-Cole 1997 (note 67), p. 216. 125. Porter 2013 (note 80), p. 20. 126. Town 2014 (note 1), p. 45. 127. Wells-Cole 1997 (note 67), pp. 216–17. 128. https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/6671 (accessed 10 April 2016). 129. M. Sellink, The New Hollstein Dutch & Flemish Etchings, Engravings and Woodcuts 1450–1700, Philips Galle, Part I, Rotterdam 2001, pp. 38–42. 130. Sellink 2001 (note 129), p. 45. 131. https://rkd.nl/en/explore/artists/9099 (accessed 10 April 2016). 132. M. Sellink, Philips Galle (1537–1612): Engraver and Print Publisher in Haarlem and Antwerp, PhD thesis, vol. 1 Text, Amsterdam 1997, pp. 87–88. 133. Sutton’s coat of arms was only assigned to him after his death in 1611; Porter 2009 (note 9), p. 13.

Author Carlos González Juste has a BA in History from the Complutense University in Madrid and a degree in Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage from the Escuela Superior de Conservación y Restauración de Bienes Culturales in Madrid. He has interned in the Museo Nacional del Prado (Madrid) and other Spanish institutions. He is currently completing his second year as a postgraduate intern at the Hamilton Kerr Institute where he has been working on a wide range of projects from an early Italian painting by the Master of Castello Nativity to the early twentieth-century Russian artist, A. Harlamoff, as well as paintings by J. Reynolds, W. van Mieris and the seventeenth-century English painter R. Buckett.

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‘Titian’s Mistress’ at Apsley House and the painting beneath SARAH BAYLISS, ALICE TATE-HARTE AND PAUL JOANNIDES Abstract Conservation of ‘Titian’s Mistress’ at Apsley House, London, revealed a painting of much higher quality than previously assessed, with dramatically varied depicted textures and bearing Titian’s previously unrecorded signature. Its provenance before 1660, when it was recorded in the Alcázar of Madrid, is debated and it is uncertain whether it entered the Spanish Royal Collection as a bequest shortly before 1600 or if it was acquired from the estate of Rubens, who certainly copied it, after his death in 1640. Examination of X-radiographs has revealed, oriented horizontally, a different composition beneath the present surface: a variant of a painting, then in the Wigger Collection and published by Suida, showing a Woman – or Venus – at her Toilet, presented with a mirror by Cupid. Abbreviated versions of this painting, arranged vertically, can be found in the Courtauld Institute, London and the Accademia di San Luca, Rome. Technical and stylistic analysis of the Courtauld version indicates that it is not from Titian’s workshop. Both paintings have previously been attributed to Carletto Caliari, suggesting that versions of Titian’s composition were produced by other studios. The pose of the subsidiary figure in the lay-in beneath ‘Titian’s Mistress’ varies from that of Cupid in the ex-Wigger picture and seems to evoke urgency; this raises the possibility that it was conceived as a narrative, one closely resembling Guercino’s Semiramis Called to Arms (Boston, Museum of Fine Arts) of 1624.

Introduction Technical investigation during parallel, but staggered, restorations undertaken in 2013–14 of a Young Woman Holding Rose Garlands and ‘Titian’s Mistress’ in the Wellington Collection,

Apsley House, London, produced interesting findings on two paintings which, although traditionally attributed to Titian, had been consigned to the outer margins of his work in twentieth-century scholarship.1 The paintings, both of which revealed

Figure 1. Titian, ‘Titian’s Mistress’, c.1560, oil on canvas, 97.4 × 71.1 cm. The Wellington Collection, Apsley House, London.

Figure 2. Unidentified painter after Titian, Portrait of a Venetian Lady, eighteenth century, oil on canvas, 93 × 73 cm. Leicester Collection, Holkham Hall, Norfolk.

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Figure 3. Titian, Self-Portrait in Profile, c.1570, oil on canvas, 86 × 65 cm. Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid.

previously unobserved Titian signatures, were first recorded in the Spanish Royal Collection and were among the paintings appropriated by Joseph Bonaparte when he fled from Spain in 1813. Captured at the Battle of Vitoria by the Duke of Wellington, they were subsequently presented to him by Spain’s grateful king. Their ownership is now divided: the Young Woman Holding Rose Garlands2 remains in the private collection of the Wellesley family while ‘Titian’s Mistress’ (figure 1), part of the 7th Duke of Wellington’s gift to the nation in 1947, is displayed in the public rooms at Apsley House. Treated in the English Heritage Conservation Studio in 2013–14, ‘Titian’s Mistress’ is the subject of the present article.3

Collection are both uncertain. Although Titian sent paintings directly to Charles V and – in much larger numbers – to Philip II, it cannot be identified in the correspondence between Titian and either monarch. It must be a picture intended for private display: the relation of semi-nude sitter to the male viewer is unusually direct and inviting in its eroticism. As far as we know, Titian did not repeat it – unlike the Belle series of the 1530s comprising the paintings in the Pitti, the Kunsthistorisches Museum and the Hermitage (with which it shares some iconographic links) – or the later series that includes the Young Woman with Rose Garlands, nor is any version by Titian’s studio known.4 This implies either that Titian portrayed a mistress of his own, for his own pleasure, or painted it as a bespoke commission from the woman’s lover. In favour of the first possibility is its reflection in Rubens.5 The beret perched at a pert angle on

The history and identity of the painting The identity of ‘Titian’s Mistress’ and the date of the painting’s entry into the Spanish Royal

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the sitter’s head must have attracted Rubens, in several of whose paintings and drawings comparable berets are to be found.6 He made a copy of the Apsley House painting which is now lost but known from a contemporary engraving by Lucas Vorsterman and a later painted copy at Holkham Hall, Norfolk (figure 2).7 Indeed ‘Titian’s Mistress’ was probably the single most important inspiration for Het Pelzken, famously painted by Rubens for his own delectation: the relationship suggests that Rubens was interpreting a role he believed to have been created by Titian. That the cloak may be the lover’s, in addition to raising the painting’s erotic temperature, would be Titian’s private (self) conscious reference to Giorgione’s Laura, whose left breast also emerges from a man’s winter cloak. By the eighteenth century the appellation was well established: the Apsley House painting was identified as ‘la mujer de Tiçian’ in the Alcázar inventories of 1749 and 1772 when it was hung in relation to Titian’s Self-Portrait in Profile (figure 3).8 The second option was supported by Miguel Falomir, who suggested that the painting represents a mistress of Diego Hurtado de Mendoza, Charles V’s ambassador in Venice from 1539 to 1545 and a friend of Titian. Such an identification would imply an earlier date than we would judge plausible for this picture, which seems to us a product of the later 1550s or early 1560s unless, of course, it was painted some years after Mendoza left Venice and despatched to him either in Rome, where he subsequently served as ambassador, or after his return to Spain – in which case it would be the reminiscence of a past love rather than the record of a present one.9 Falomir pointed out that Hurtado de Mendoza’s posthumous inventory of 1575 includes, as no.226, ‘Otro retrato de medio cuerpo al olio sobre lienço de una dama veneciana en cavello con mangas blancas y una sarta de perlas all cuello’ (‘Another portrait at half-length in oil on canvas of a Venetian woman with loose hair with white sleeves and with a string of pearls around her neck’) which, as he noted, sounds rather like our painting if one accepts that the inventorist misremembered her coiffure. Although out of royal favour at the time of his death, Hurtado de Mendoza bequeathed his possessions to Philip II, who accepted them; if ‘Titian’s Mistress’ was part of Hurtado’s bequest, Rubens’ lost copy of it was presumably made during his Spanish sojourn of 1629. Yet the fact that there is no trace of ‘Titian’s Mistress’ in any royal inventory before that of 1666 is disquieting. The posthumous inventory of Philip II’s collection, as Miguel Falomir has pointed out, has lost at least one volume, so absence from that is not significant; but it is surprising that so striking a painting cannot be found either in the inventory of 1624 or in that, more professionally compiled, of 1636. Jeremy Wood’s research offers an alternative provenance: that the Apsley House painting was in Rubens’ own possession in Flanders and was

copied by him there, not in Madrid.10 When Rubens died in 1640 he owned four portraits of Venetian courtesans and ‘Titian’s Mistress’ could have been among these, subsequently (but before 1666) to be sold to the Spanish Royal Collection, along with Titian’s Self-Portrait in Profile, which Rubens certainly owned. But if we accept this provenance, it leaves Hurtado de Mendoza’s painting unaccounted for, a matter which, it seems, cannot at present be resolved. What can be followed of ‘Titian’s Mistress’ in later Spanish royal inventories is recorded in the appendix, but it is worth noting here that the number 45 in red visible at the lower centre corresponds to the numbering of the painting in the Galeria del Mediodia of the Palacio Real in 1749 and 1772. ‘Titian’s Mistress’, the Young Woman Holding Rose Garlands and Titian’s Self-Portrait in Profile were among eight rectangular portraits, which had been transformed into ovals sometime before 1734 in accordance with Bourbon taste, but returned to their original format by 1772, when they hung in the king’s antechamber of the Palacio Real.11 Condition ‘Ovalising’, in the case of the two Apsley House pictures, would have concealed Titian’s signatures – that on ‘Titian’s Mistress’ reads ‘TITIANVS’ – but damage and paint losses resulting from folding the canvases around an oval stretcher, and the reversal of this process, probably obscured the signatures even after the paintings recovered their true shapes.12 In ‘Titian’s Mistress’ the lining necessary to restore the rectangle, or a subsequent lining, has severely flattened the paint layers and caused the coarse herringbone canvas to push through, with widespread abrasion of the background; additionally the darker passages have suffered heat damage. The paintings were no doubt also affected by Joseph Bonaparte’s seizure; although his officers seem to have been careful, the paintings would certainly have been unframed and were probably detached from their stretchers. Although it is recorded that some of the canvases were rolled, ‘Titian’s Mistress’ bears no physical traces of this, so rolling was either performed very skilfully or perhaps smaller canvases escaped this process. Nevertheless, however delicate their treatment, they would probably have required restoration in London, which may have reduced their quality still further. Black paint applied to the background of ‘Titian’s Mistress’ to cover damage in the spandrels would have obliterated any remaining trace of the signature. Past cleaning campaigns have removed glazes and worn the paint down to the dark underlayers. This is especially disfiguring in the flesh tones and particularly the face of ‘Titian’s Mistress’ where the paint has also become more transparent with age. Recent cleaning removed layers of sooty black dirt and pollution accumulated from Hyde Park Corner, plus

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The coarse herringbone-weave canvas was prepared with a whitish gesso ground (gypsum probably bound in animal glue with silicate impurities), a preparation common to nearly all canvas paintings by Titian and his workshop.14 This gesso layer would probably have been sealed with oil, which would have soaked through making it transparent so that the ground would appear as a light buff, effectively the colour of the canvas.15 No distinctive drawing layer for the first composition was visible in infrared reflectography (IRR), but the carbon black pigment present in the upper layers would obscure any black underdrawing present. Diluted red earth paint was used to define some of the broader contours of the woman’s lap (which was visible in passages of abrasion); it may be more extensive but there is no means of determining this. Brown earth and/or lead white underpaint for the figure is present in some, but not all, of the samples, suggesting that the painter made a localised abozzo, a monochrome sketch in brown, to lay in the light and shade, a practice again consistent with Titian’s workshop and sixteenth-century Venetian practice in general. The figure of a seated woman in the lower composition and the beginnings of a second figure on the right (both visible in the X-radiograph) were first worked up in a couple of coloured paint layers. The painter changed his mind several times in the placement of the woman’s elbow, searching for the correct form. The unfinished second figure and background of the lower composition were subsequently covered with a brown layer containing brown umbers, red and yellow earth colours, lead white and bone black (figure 5). Instead of incorporating parts of the lower composition in the later painting, as in the Washington Venus with a Mirror, Titian seems to have covered it entirely, although sampling was limited and the layer appears to differ slightly in consistency across the surface, so it could be interpreted as the beginnings of a second abozzo underlayer for the upper painting.16 This painting-out layer became the background of the upper composition, which meant that the painter worked in a different manner, proceeding from dark to light, like Tintoretto, who generally used a dark preparation layer.17 If the brown painting-out layer is a brown unmodelled layer it would be unusual for Titian, but we have no other explanation for it. For the upper painting no drawing layer was discerned in IRR. It is possible that the contours of the face were traced or somehow transferred from a stock image as the proportions and outlines match very closely with The Woman with Rose Garlands, as well as the Belle series, although this might simply demonstrate that the painter was very adept at this theme. Another brown and white abozzo for the woman’s face was laid in above the brown layer and the highlights worked up and blended

Figure 4. X-radiograph of ‘Titian’s Mistress’ (figure 1). © English Heritage/ Hamilton Kerr Institute.

Figure 5. Cross-section from the chin of ‘Titian’s Mistress’ and breast paint of Venus: gesso ground (a), light abozzo for breast flesh paint (b), thin beige modifying layer for breast (c), thick brown painting out layer (d), beige shadow of the chin of ‘Titian’s Mistress’ (e).

yellowed varnish and black overpaint, to reveal as far as possible the remaining sixteenth-century paint. During restoration damaged and abraded areas were retouched to unify the painting. Attribution, connoisseurship and technical examination It seems to us that ‘Titian’s Mistress’, although not without negligent passages, is an autograph or largely autograph painting, and one that generates palpable visual energy in the contrasts and interplay among the various textures of flesh, fur, chemise and hair.13 The technique is fully consistent with an origin in Titian’s workshop, as is the fact that the figure on the surface covers a different composition showing a seated woman with a raised arm, now revealed by X-radiography (figure 4); reuse of supports is so frequent in Titian as to be virtually a distinguishing feature.

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Figure 7. Carletto Caliari? After Titian, Venus at her Toilet, c.1580?, oil on canvas, 94.5 × 74 cm. Samuel Courtauld Trust, the Courtauld Gallery, London.

Figure 6. Titian and/or studio, A Woman at a Mirror, c.1550, oil on canvas, 88.5 × 72 cm. Formerly F. Wigger Collection, Pfarrkirchen.

smoothly with the mid-tones. Cooling blue azurite was mixed with lead white, vermilion, red lake, yellow earths and carbon black for shadows in the face and décolleté. The proper left hand is skilfully painted, with a red outline defining the contours, while the other hand is a little more awkward. Glazes were applied last to soften transitions but many of these have since been rubbed away, thereby diminishing the original’s quality still further. The sitter’s golden-auburn hair was painted in yellow and brown earths. Outline highlights of the red drapery were primarily sketched in on top of the brown painting-out layer in pink paint composed of lead white and vermilion, followed by a vermilion and red lake layer and, finally, a red lake glaze in the deeper shadows, a combination frequently used by Titian and his workshop. The drapery appears broken up due to the formation of lead white soaps in this oil-rich area and the glazes are now very worn.18 The embroidered edging was established using yellow earth and lead white pigments to create the highlights, originally richly impastoed, over a yellow earth mid-tone. It is interesting that more luxurious pigments such as orpiment and realgar, often used by Titian earlier in his career, are absent. Sadly, the fur is very abraded and wrinkled from heat damage and has lost much of its texture, but the softer transition between fur and background on the left shoulder allows us to glimpse some of the pelt’s original appearance. There are minor pentimenti: the necklace was eventually placed a little lower on the neck, the

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Figure 8. Carletto Caliari? After Titian, Venus at her Toilet, c.1580?, oil on canvas, 91 × 73 cm. Accademia di San Luca, Rome. Courtesy of Accademia Nazionale di San Luca, Rome.

proper left little and ring fingers have been moved and the proper right cuff was reduced in the final design. If this was Titian’s original conception of the composition, rather than a second version or


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Figure 9. Cross-section from the Courtauld Venus’s leg: first off-white ground (a), second grey ground (b), first fleshcoloured layer containing lead white, earth pigments and red lake pigments (c), upper flesh-coloured layer containing lead white and red lake pigments (d).

a ricordo, we might expect to see more substantial changes to the composition as he worked it out directly on the canvas.19 Lack of major pentimenti might suggest that the Apsley House picture is not the primary version, but there are no extant competing versions with which it may be compared.

been proposed for both, and stylistic similarities to Veronese and his workshop have been noted by a number of art historians.21 X-radiographs of the London painting and of the top half of the Rome painting reveal no pentimenti.22 While the existence of similar versions may indicate the use of a template, in the Courtauld version IRR has provided no indication of a carbon-based underdrawing or transfer methods. This of course does not exclude the use of materials that do not appear in IRR, such as red paint or chalk. The Courtauld Toilet of Venus is currently catalogued as ‘After Titian’ and in the past has been attributed to Titian, Veronese, their workshops or followers. Its provenance can be traced firmly to 1722 and it is possible that earlier mentions of the painting, as a Veronese, can be found in the inventories of the Gonzaga dukes of Mantua.23 But despite its compositional connection to Titian, technical analysis shows that the London painting does not conform to his known working practice and technique.24 Painted on canvas, it has a double ground composed of a lower off-white and an upper grey layer. The lower layer is formed of two different materials, an off-white siliceous earth and particles of pure silica (figure 9).25 The grey upper layer – comprising coarsely ground lead white, carbon black and earth pigments, and the occasional particle of glass – is prominent in the overall aesthetic of the painting and lends a cool and luminous quality to the flesh. Such preparation would seemingly exclude an origin in Titian’s studio as he worked predominantly on gesso grounds. While there is technical evidence to support the isolated use of both quartz and similar siliceous material in works by sixteenthcentury Italian artists, including Titian and some of his contemporaries, the use of only these materials as the main components in the ground layer is highly unusual for any known traditional painting practices.26 The employment of clays, siliceous earths and

The lower painting: iconography and variants As Wethey and Kauffman noted, and visitors to Apsley House must frequently have remarked, a diagonal discoloration falls right-to-left across the sitter’s torso; both suggested that the breast was at one time painted over with a grey veil to reduce the young woman’s immodesty. But there is no evidence that any such layer was applied and the discoloration is, in fact, showing through from the underlying painting. This composition, oriented horizontally rather than vertically, shows a woman in a shift accompanied by a second figure and is closely related to, but not identical with, three examples of The Toilet of Venus, all of which, however, are in vertical rather than horizontal format. These show Venus (or a young woman) also in a shift, studying herself in a mirror proffered by Cupid – thematically similar to, but different in arrangement and poses from, the famous Venus With a Mirror in Washington and other versions of that composition. One of these paintings was published by Suida in 1933 as in the collection of a Dr F. Wigger in Pfarrkirchen (presumably Pfarrkirchen in Germany rather than Austria) (figure 6); to the best of our knowledge it has not reappeared.20 From Suida’s reproduction, this Toilet of Venus seems plausible as a work from Titian’s school but it would be unwise to offer a closer judgement until it can be studied directly. Fortunately, the other two versions are accessible: one is in the Courtauld Gallery in London (figure 7), and the other in the Accademia di San Luca in Rome (figure 8). Attributions to Carletto Caliari (c.1570–1596) have independently

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quartz is widespread in many red, iron-containing grounds of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century European paintings.27 However, the inclusion and aesthetic effect of iron oxides, whether due to the painting practice or the source of material, is markedly different from this ground. Perhaps the closest practice currently known is Rembrandt’s highly individual use of quartz grounds, which has little connection to this research.28 As more paintings are examined, particularly those of workshop quality, and more technical information becomes available on the use of such materials, it will hopefully become clear how this preparation fits into a broader context of painting practices. Until then, it would be unwise to exclude this painting from the category of ‘sixteenthcentury Venetian’ painting practices on the basis of a rare preparation layer: there remain many workshop practices of which we are ignorant and many less well-known artists with whom we are still unfamiliar. The painting technique and materials of the Toilet of Venus suggest well-prepared and carefully planned painting, demonstrating considerable skill and experience in obtaining the best visual effects economically. It is simply painted, but its employment of coloured underlayers is sophisticated and achieves a luxurious aesthetic from inexpensive materials. In many areas of the background an underlayer composed of inexpensive red lead was applied over the ground – not to model the drapery but to block out the cool grey ground. The palette of the Toilet of Venus is consistent with sixteenthcentury Venetian painting practice and includes lead white, carbon black, earth pigments, lead-tin yellow, azurite, red lead and red lake pigments. The inclusion of red lead is perhaps more unusual but, due to its function, appears to have been an economical choice. The technique and the unusual ground layers suggest that the Courtauld painting was a relatively routine product, possibly a non-commissioned piece for ad hoc sale. It is perhaps, but not certainly, from the workshop of Paolo Veronese or his heirs, with whom it and the Accademia di San Luca version have widely and traditionally been associated. But if the ground layers of the Courtauld painting offer no particular support for a link with Veronese or his followers, neither do they exclude it; the preparation of the San Luca version has not yet been analysed, nor does there seem to be any published information on Carletto Caliari’s techniques.

Figure 10. X-radiograph of ‘Titian’s Mistress’ (figure 1) with an overlay of A Woman at a Mirror (figure 6).

Figure 11. Guercino, Semiramis Receiving Word of the Revolt of Babylon, 1624, oil on canvas, 112 × 155 cm. Francis Welch Fund. Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

since the Apsley lay-in was covered over, it cannot be their direct source; future research may discover that the Wigger painting (should it reappear) is that source, or that there existed another, now lost, version of the composition by Titian. The relation with the Courtauld and San Luca paintings might be taken to support the view that Titian sometimes franchised popular compositions to more favoured younger colleagues, but if they are by Carletto they would postdate Titian’s death and were no doubt unauthorised versions of a commercially successful prototype.29 While the female figures are more or less identical, and loosely derive from classical sculptures of the Venus Genetrix, there is no exact correlation between the Cupid who appears in the Wigger, Courtauld and San Luca versions of The Toilet of Venus and the indistinct second figure in the Apsley X-radiograph. This unfinished figure might in principle be a Cupid, but his face is larger in scale than, and differently inclined from, the Cupids in the other paintings. Some rectilinear strokes in the X-radiograph might correspond to a mirror, but this is doubtful.

Sources and relationship between the Courtauld and Apsley paintings Venus in the Courtauld and San Luca versions of The Toilet of Venus conforms closely in contour and scale to the female figure in the first layer of the Apsley House canvas, as illustrated by an overlay tracing the contours of the Courtauld painting on the Apsley X-radiograph (figure 10). But, of course,

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Given our uncertainty about identifying the accessory figure from the X-radiograph alone, a different interpretation may be offered: the unfinished figure could be a man rather than an infant, similar to the looming male figure in the Woman at her Toilet (c.1515, Paris, Musée du Louvre). It is also significant that in the Apsley House painting the composition is oriented horizontally, not vertically, which, rather than a timeless evocation of beauty (and vanity?), suggests a narrative. If so, it would seem that a version of this composition was known to other artists and interpreted by them as a story. There is a surprising similarity of composition to Guercino’s Semiramis Receiving Word of the Revolt of Babylon of 1624 in Boston (figure 11) as well as to Vouet’s Magdalen and Martha of 1620 (Hunterian Art Gallery, Glasgow).30 Such wide-ranging influence reinforces the idea that a finished second version by Titian of the composition underlying ‘Titian’s Mistress’ was known in the seventeenth century. Tantalisingly, however, Titian’s intention for that composition will remain a matter for speculation unless and until that version is found. Appendix: References to ‘Titian’s Mistress’ in inventories of the Spanish Royal Collection 1666 Alcázar, Madrid, Galeria del Mediodia: No. 594 (22788) Vara y quarta de alto vara de ancho, un retrato de una dama con una roba de martos con una gorilla negra en la cabeza de mano del Ticiano; tasada en 150 ducados de plata.31 1686 Alcázar, Madrid, Galeria del Mediodia: 3483 Otra de vara y quarto de alto y vara de ancho de un retrato de una dama, con ropa de martes y una gorilla negra, de mano del Ticiano. 1700 Palacio Real, Galeria de Mediodia: No. 73(5501) – otra de Vara y quarta de alto y Vara de ancho de Un Rettratto de Una Dama con una ropa de martas y una gorilla negra de mano del tiçian. Con marco negro tasada en cinquenta doblones. (Titian’s Self-Portrait was in the same gallery as No. 44 valued at 100 Doblones.) 1747 Palacio Real, La Primera Sala de este oficio: No. 45 (10264) Otro de mismo tamaño que el antecediente de la mujer del Ticiano, original de este; se taso a 4,000 reales. The ‘antecediente’ was No. 44 (10263) Otro retrato ovalado original del Ticiano y su retrato proprio de vara y quarto de caida y la correspondiente de de ancho; se taso a 4,000 reales. (At this date ‘Titian’s Mistress’ was evidently – and understandably – hung next to Titian’s Self-Portrait). 1772, Palacio Real, Antecamera de su Majestad: 42, 45, 85, 39, 46, 118, 39, 39 (12667) Ocho retratos iguales de mas de’ media cuerpo originales de Ticiano que el una es el mismo otra el de su mujer, los demas de otras sugetos que se ignora de vara y quarto de alto y vara de ancho. Marginal note: Todos estos retratos en los primeros inventorios consta haber estado en óblado pero despues se passieran en quadro.32

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Acknowledgements

We extend our thanks to the Duke and Duchess of Wellington, Miguel Falomir Faus, Helen Glanville, Ana González Mozo, Josephine Oxley, Giorgio Tagliaferro, Angela Cipriani and Jeremy Wood.

Notes

1. H. Wethey, The Paintings of Titian, Complete Edition, II, The Portraits, London 1971, X-112. 2, pp. 186–87, plate 267 (oil on canvas, 103 × 74.6 cm) and X-91, p. 179 (‘The quality of the painting is moderately high’), plate 266 (oil on canvas, 97.4 × 71.1 cm). For the latter see also C.M. Kauffmann, Paintings in the Wellington Museum, Apsley House, revised by S. Jenkins, London 2009, no. 180, pp. 298–99; these paintings are ignored in other twentieth-century Titian compendia. 2. P. Joannides and R. Featherstone: ‘A painting by Titian from the Spanish Royal Collection at Apsley House, London’, Hamilton Kerr Institute Bulletin, no. 5, 2014, pp. 66–79; in this article ‘Titian’s Mistress’ was referred to as A Young Woman Exposing Her Left Breast – descriptively accurate but perhaps overly anatomical: here we have reverted to the traditional, more cheerful, title. 3. Technical investigation and conservation was undertaken by Alice Tate-Harte. Investigative methods included digital infrared reflectography (IRR), digital X-radiography both performed by the Hamilton Kerr Institute, as well as examination with ultraviolet light, surface magnification with a binocular microscope, paint sampling and scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive X-ray (SEM-EDX) analysis of cross-section samples, and surface analysis using X-ray fluorescence (XRF). The full technical evidence will be published in a forthcoming article. 4. There are compositional similarities to a little-known Portrait of a Woman in the Spencer Collection at Althorp, and a Portrait of a Woman, formerly in an unknown private collection, recorded in a photograph in the Witt Library. The former, studied by Tate-Harte and Joannides on 27 May 2015, requires further examination but it seemed to both to be a work from Titian’s studio. 5. Titian’s relationships in his later years are very uncertain: for speculations see C. Hope, ‘Titian’s family and the dispersal of his estate’, in S. Ferino-Pagden and G. Nepi Sciré (eds), Late Titian and the Sensuality of Painting, exh. cat., Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna and Galleria dell’Accademia, Venice 2007– 2008, pp. 29–41, and F. Navarro, ‘Titian’s “Bella”: in search of an identity’, in M. Ciatti, F. Navarro and P. Riitano (eds), Titian’s La Bella. Woman in Blue Dress, Florence 2011, p. 13. A survey of British and American sale catalogues yielded 28 entries under Titian’s Mistress from sales dating from 1756–1844, 19 of which were given to the master. Some of these were no doubt repeats, but it is clear that Titian’s Mistress was a frequently employed default title. 6. As Giorgio Tagliaferro noted, an X-radiograph of The Eduation of Cupid in Galleria Borghese shows that Venus originally wore a similar beret, subsequently covered. The bonnet worn by the Hermitage Bella Titian is also cocked at an angle. 7. Thoroughly discussed by J. Wood, Corpus Rubenianum XXVI (2) Copies and Adaptations from Renaissance and Later Italian Masters, Italian Artists II. Titian and Northern Italian Art, 2 vols, London


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and Turnhout 2010, vol. I, no. 142, pp. 276–77. Wood suggestively characterised the Holkham copy – chastely inventoried as Portrait of a Venetian Lady and thought to be an original by Titian until 1854 – as ‘perhaps by a Flemish seventeenth-century artist’ and noted that it was in the Leicester collection by 1760, over half a century before the Apsley House canvas came to Britain. Thanks to the kindness of Colin Shearer, who arranged to take the Holkham painting off display, Tate-Harte, Wood and Joannides were able to examine it closely on 9 April 2014 and unanimously concluded that it is likely to be a late seventeenth- or early eighteenth-century replica of Rubens’ lost copy. Samples were taken which showed that the painting was executed on a buff colour oil ground (medium untested) containing chalk, lead white, carbon black and earth pigments, and was not prepared with a gesso layer. 8. Józef Grabski reminds us that Van Dyck made an etching of Titian and his Mistress from a famous but now lost painting then in the Borghese Collection, a mildly satirical variant of an ‘unequal love’ composition by Cariani, which showed an elderly and somewhat shrunken Titian reaching towards a rather large young woman. However, the ‘mistress’ in this painting was based not, as might be expected, on the woman in the Apsley House canvas but very inappropriately on Laura di Dianti, which implies that the painter was poorly informed. This picture seems to have addressed the aged Titian’s sexual proclivities in general, not a specific attachment. The matter is discussed by G. Luijten, no. 32, pp. 24–48, in C. Depau and G. Luijten (eds), Anthony van Dyck as a Printmaker, exh. cat., Antwerp and Amsterdam 1999–2000. 9. M. Falomir Faus, ‘“Felicissimi e Destrissimi Ruffiani in Simil Cosa”: Alfonso de Avalos, Hurtado de Mendoza y algunos aspectos de la actividad artistica veneciana entre 1539 y 1545’, in De Tiziano a Bassano, Maestros Venecianos del Museo del Prado, exh. cat., Barcelona 1997, pp. 15–27, especially pp. 23–24, citing R. Foulché-Delbosc, ‘Un point contesté de la vie de Don Diego Hurtado de Mendoza’, Revue Hispanique, vol. 10, 1895, pp. 208–303, esp. p. 302; unfortunately no artists are named in Hurtado’s inventory. 10. See Wood 2010 (note 7). Professor Wood kindly provided us with supplementary documentation on this painting in which the fact that Rubens copied it is repeatedly mentioned. 11. As Ana González Mozo kindly informs us, in Titian’s Self-Portrait in Profile the oval is visible as damage on the paint surface corresponding to old fold lines, and a turnover edge and a set of old tack holes are clearly seen in the X-radiograph. The remaining five are presently not located or identified. 12. The first part of the script has been damaged and is only partially legible. Signatures are found on Titian workshop paintings as well as those by the hand of the master, but while the discovery of a signature alone does not confirm that a painting is a fully autograph work it is strong supporting evidence. 13. The painting’s compromised condition accounts for the failure of Wethey and Kauffman to fully appreciate it. Tate-Harte finds certain lower-quality passages, notably in the proper right hand and the hat, which might suggest an assistant’s involvement; Joannides considers the painting to be fully autograph. 14. Two paintings from Titian’s Augsburg period contain

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lead white in oil, possibly because he knew they would be rolled for transport: M. Griesser and N. Gustavson, ‘Observations on techniques and materials in Titian’s late work’, in S. Ferino-Pagden and G. Nepi Sciré (eds), Late Titian and the Sensuality of Painting, exh. cat., Vienna and Venice 2007–2008, pp. 103–11. 15. Dunkerton states that in Titian’s earlier works the gesso ground was modified with a priming to prevent the ground absorbing too much oil but in later years he generally came to paint directly on the gesso, perhaps because he preferred the absorbent surface: J. Dunkerton, ‘Titian’s painting technique’, in Titian, exh. cat., London 2003, pp. 44–59. No medium testing was carried out on the Apsley House painting. 16. It is well known that the ‘portrait’ format of Venus with a Mirror, c.1555, oil on canvas, 124.5 × 105.5 cm, carries beneath it a ‘landscape’ format portrait of a man and a woman: F.R. Shapley, Catalogue of the Italian Paintings, The National Gallery of Art, Washington, 2 vols, Washington DC 1979, pp. 476–80 and plate 341A. The man’s costume from the portrait was incorporated into Venus’ robe. 17. J. Dunkerton, ‘Tintoretto’s painting technique’, in M. Falomir, R. Echols and F. Ilchmann (eds), Tintoretto, exh. cat., Madrid 2003, pp. 139–58. 18. C. Higgitt, M. Spring and D. Saunders, ‘Pigment– medium interactions in oil paint films containing red lead or lead tin yellow’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 24, 2003, pp. 75–95. Aviva Burnstock found lead soaps in large numbers in oil-rich glazes, where there is an abundance of medium to react with the pigment. 19. H. Glanville, P. Riitano and C. Seccaroni, ‘La Bella and the young women of Vienna and Saint Petersburg: elements for an integrated technical reading’, in M. Ciatti, F. Navarro and P. Riitano (eds), Titian’s La Bella. Woman in Blue Dress, Florence 2011, pp. 63–80. 20. W. Suida, Tiziano, Rome 1933, pl. CCXXIV as ‘Venere con specchio e cupido’; ibid. in the French edition of 1935. 21. T. Pignatti and F. Pedrocco, Veronese, Milan 1995, A.40, pp. 513–14 as ‘atribuito’; they suggest that the Rome version may be by Carletto. Richard Cocke, personal communication, considers that the Courtauld version is also probably by Carletto. D. von Hadeln in G. Schweikhart (ed.), Paolo Veronese, Florence 1978, no. 248, figure 77, accepted the Courtauld painting as a Veronese and the San Luca one as a studio variant; he thought that the ex-Wigger painting was a derivation rather than a source. 22. With thanks to Angela Cipriani for this information. 23. Henry Bentinck, 1st Duke of Portland, sold The Toilet of Venus in 1722 as A Venus Dressing by Veronese. He is known to have bought several paintings from the Gonzaga Collection, including works by Veronese, and his purchases perhaps included The Toilet of Venus. Entries dating as far back as 1665 in the inventories of the Gonzaga Collection describe a painting of the same subject and of similar size by Paolo Veronese. See M. Eidelberg and E. Rowlands, ‘The dispersal of the Last Duke of Mantua’s paintings’, Gazette des Beaux-Arts, vol. 136, 1994, pp. 207–94, note 124: ‘The painting was cited in the 1665 inventory as “Un quadreto di Venere di meza figura di Pauol Verones”... in 1706 as “Una Venere di Paolo Veronese lunga due braccia [Doppie n.] 60”... in 1709 as “Un quadro consoaza di basso rilevo


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doratta de quarte cinque e quarte sei rappresenta una Venere di mano di Paulo Veronese”... in 1711 as “5 A Venus looking in a looking-glass, held to her by a Cupid, a half figure, of Paul Veronese [Ducats 700]”.’ 24. The painting was examined, cleaned and restored at the Courtauld Institute of Art Department for Conservation and Technology by Sarah Bayliss. 25. In ultraviolet light two distinct materials are visible in this lower off-white ground layer and were analysed using SEM-EDX. The majority of the ground is composed of off-white siliceous earth containing silicon, aluminium and potassium, and particles of pure silica. 26. Titian is known to have included quartz in some of his paintings; see M. Griesser and N. Gustavson, ‘Observations on technique and materials in Titian’s late work’, in S. Ferino-Pagden (ed.), Late Titian and the Sensuality of Painting, Vienna 2008, pp. 103–11. Lorenzo Lotto used fine sand as a siccative in the red lake glazes in Saint Catherine of Alexandria (1522); see B.H. Berrie and L.C. Matthew, ‘Material innovation and material invention: new materials and new colours in Renaissance Venetian paintings’, in National Research Council (Sackler NAS Colloquium), Scientific Examination of Art: Modern Techniques in Conservation and Analysis, Washington DC 2005, pp. 16–19. Dosso Dossi (c.1490–1542) used clays and mixtures of siliceous earths in some of these coloured imprimatura layers; see: B.H. Berrie, ‘A note on the imprimatura in two of Dosso Dossi’s paintings’, Journal of the American Institute for Conservation, vol. 33, 1994, pp. 307–13. Similar aluminium- and potassium-containing siliceous material has been found as a small addition or impurity in the calcium carbonate ground layer of Paolo Veronese’s Adoration of the Kings of 1573 in the National Gallery. This is an unusual preparation, as most paintings from Veronese’s workshop that have been technically examined have gesso ground layers: see N. Penny, A. Roy and M. Spring, ‘Veronese’s paintings in the National Gallery, techniques and materials: Part II’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 17, 1996, pp. 32–55. 27. E. Martin, ‘Grounds on canvas 1600–1640 in various European artistic centres’, in J. Townsend, T. Doherty, G. Heydenreich and J. Ridge (eds), Preparation for Painting: The Artist’s Choice and its Consequence, London 2008, pp. 59–67. M. Stols-Witlox, ‘Grounds, 1400–1900’, in J. Hill Stoner and R. Rushfield (eds), Conservation of Easel Paintings, London and New York 2012, pp. 161–88. 28. For more information on the use of quartz and clays in Rembrandt’s grounds see K. Groen, Paintings in the Laboratory: Scientific Examination for Art History and Conservation, London 2014, pp. 21–66. 29. T. Pignatti, ‘Tiziano e Veronese’, in R. Pallucchini (ed.), Tiziano e il manierismo europeo, Florence 1978, pp. 193–204, emphasises the fundamental differences between the two painters, but acknowledges some similarities of motif. The activity of Paolo Veronese and his studio as copyists seems terra incognita. 30. L. Salerno, I dipinti del Guercino, Rome 1988, no. 102, pp. 184–85. The proportional relation between Titian’s composition and that of Guercino is 1:1.15 in both directions. Helen Glanville noticed the similarity to Vouet’s Magdalen and Martha of c.1620 (Hunterian Art Gallery, Glasgow).

31. This connection was noted by A. Vergara, Rubens in Spain, unpublished PhD thesis, New York 1994, vol. II, p. 393, cited by Wood 2010 (note 7), pp. 277–78. 32. Some of these may have been among the ‘Seis Rettrattos medios cuerpos de a bara de alto y tres quartas de ancho de mano deel tiçiano Con marcos negros tasado a Cinquentta Doblones Cada uno’ grouped without further description under the single number 58 in the Galeria del Mediodia of the Palacio Real in 1700.

Authors Sarah Bayliss graduated with a Masters in Chemistry from the University of East Anglia in 2011 and received her postgraduate diploma in the Conservation of Easel Paintings from the Courtauld in 2015. During her studies she has presented work on technical art history and ageing phenomena in twenty-first-century oil paints in collaboration with the RCE, Amsterdam. Sarah is currently working as a postgraduate intern at the Hamilton Kerr Institute. Alice Tate-Harte studied Art History and Material Studies at University College London and Easel Painting Conservation at the Courtauld Institute of Art. She was an intern at the Mauritshuis in The Hague and has a love of Dutch painting. She has worked in private studios and has been the Collections Conservator for Fine Art at English Heritage for nine years, working on collections in historic houses such as Kenwood and Apsley House. Paul Joannides is Emeritus Professor of the History of Art at the University of Cambridge. His main interests lie in the painting, sculpture, drawing and, to a lesser extent architecture of the Italian Renaissance. He has published extensively on such artists as Masaccio, Michelangelo, Raphael and Titian and, to a lesser extent, on other major figures such as Fra Angelico, Botticelli and Leonardo. He has also published on French late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century painting, and has a strong interest in the relations between literature and the visual arts in that period. His main publications include: The Drawings of Raphael, London 1983; Masaccio and Masolino, London 1993; Titian to 1518: The Assumption of Genius, New Haven 2001; Michel-Ange, Ecole, Copistes, Inventaire des Dessins Italiens, Paris 2003; and Reactions to the Master: Responses to Michelangelo in the Sixteenth Century, co-edited with Francis Ames-Lewis, Farnham 2003. His exhibitions and catalogues include: Michelangelo and his Influence, an exhibition of 68 drawings for the Royal Collection, staged in three venues in the USA and two in the UK, October 1996–April 1998; Raphael and his Age: Drawings from the Palais des Beaux-Arts, Lille, exhibition of 57 drawings shown at the Cleveland Museum of Art and the Palais des Beaux-Arts, Lille, 2002–2003; and Drawings by Michelangelo and his Followers in the Ashmolean Museum, Cambridge 2007.

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A technical study of Sir Joshua Reynolds’ Portrait of Anne Liddell, Duchess of Grafton, 1757–59 PIA DOWSE Abstract This article concerns a portrait painting of Anne Liddell, executed by Sir Joshua Reynolds between 1757 and 1759, which is held in a private collection. Reynolds’ painting style, materials and techniques varied greatly during his long career therefore this study investigates the extent to which the execution of this portrait fits into his known painting practice of the late 1750s.

Introduction Sir Joshua Reynolds was born in 1723 in Plympton, Devon. For three years from 1740 to 1743 he was apprenticed to Thomas Hudson (1701–1779), one of the most successful portrait painters in London following the death of Sir Godfrey Kneller in 1723.1 This training enabled Reynolds to set up as a portraitist in Devon and London. From 1743 to 1749 his paintings exhibit none of the deterioration issues notorious in his later works.2 In 1749, Reynolds travelled to Italy where he spent three years studying the art of the Old Masters and cultivating new friends and patrons. He was concerned that his travels abroad should make the maximum impact on his future career and prospects.3 He noted: ‘by being in too great a hurry perhaps I shall ruin all and arrive at London without reputation & nobody that has ever heard of me, when by staying here a month extra-ordinary my name will arrive before me, and … nobody will dare find fault with me since it has had the approbation of the greatest living Painters’.4 When in Italy Reynolds studied Old Master paintings and made notes on their colour and technique. For example in Venice he consulted Zuccarelli as to whether or not Titian, Veronese and Tintoretto employed a gesso ground.5 In the surviving pocket sketchbooks from this period are drawings of landscapes, ornament, antique sculpture and paintings from Mantegna to Tieopolo.6 Reynolds had a desire to return to the past – he felt that modern Italian painters did not understand the works of the Old Masters. He was inspired by the polemics of Jonathan Richardson, a writer and painter working at the beginning of the eighteenth century, author of An Essay on the Theory of Painting in 1715, which argued for painters to be put on a par with poets.7 Followers of Richardson, including Reynolds, believed that ‘great taste’ was embodied in ancient sculpture and sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Italian painting.8 Reynolds’ return to the past brought him great success as a painter but it also meant he recklessly

disregarded established and reliable ways of using oil paint.9 Many of his paintings executed after his return from Italy exhibit severe fading, flaking and cracking issues due to experimentation with painting materials. He used unstable pigments such as carmine and orpiment together with combinations of waxes, oils and admixtures of various drying media.10 Benjamin Haydon, an English painter at the beginning of the nineteenth century, considered that Reynolds’ weakness was the impatient emulation of the effects rather than the careful imitation of the methods of the Old Masters.11 The subject of the painting in context Anne Liddell stands painted in her coronation robes even though it is known that she could not attend her own coronation as duchess due to the fact she had chicken pox (figure 1).12 Since 1753 Reynolds had been working in large premises on Great Newport Street, from where he promoted himself as a portrait painter.13 He found customers by courting the aristocracy and landed gentry of Devon and Cornwall, building upon old family connections. He therefore built up a network of aristocratic patrons whose political ambitions he endorsed. Through the Cornish Edgcumbe family, Reynolds was put in touch with the most influential Whig families (aristocrats who challenged the hegemony of the king and power of the crown), such as the Keppels. Augustus Keppel in turn secured patronage of other Whig families such as the Cavendishes, Russells, Spencers and Wentworths, whose portraits Reynolds painted.14 Anne is known to have been involved with the ‘whiggish Bedford set’ and so perhaps this was partly the inspiration for Reynolds to paint her portrait.15 Most of these portraits were intended to promote a public image of the sitters as grand, fearless and splendid. Poses were often derived from antique sculptures or sixteenth-century Venetian paintings, a practice based on his admiration for the arguments put forward by Richardson and his time spent in Italy.16

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Figure 1. Joshua Reynolds, Portrait of Anne Liddell, Duchess of Grafton, 1757–59, oil on canvas, 241.3 × 149.8 cm: after conservation treatment. Private collection. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

At the age of 18, Anne, the daughter of Henry Liddell, Lord Ravensworth, married Augustus Henry Fitzroy, 3rd Duke of Grafton, on 1 March 1756. This portrait was painted just over one year later, with the first recorded appointment with the duchess in Reynolds’ ‘Sitters book’ (most of which are held at the Royal Academy, London) being December 1757.17 Three appointments followed: in

January and March 1758 and another in January 1759, making a total of six appointments, which was a standard amount of sittings for Reynolds’ earlier full-length portraits.18 The marriage was not a happy one and the couple divorced 10 years after this portrait was painted, on 23 March 1769, causing a scandal in society as divorce was highly unusual at the time.

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Three days later Anne married John Fitzpatrick, 2nd Earl of Ossary. Despite the public outrage Reynolds painted her again as Lady Ossary in 1770.19 The way Reynolds depicted his full-length portraits of women, including this one, was a departure from what was then the norm. It was noted by a contemporary that many sitters, especially ladies, preferred portraits that were ‘neat, formal, upright’, in the style of Hudson, and showed the sitter ‘at some stiff sort of employment’. Evident in Reynolds’ female portraits, particularly those painted between the mid-1750s and mid-1760s, is a new liveliness, familiarity and directness, examples of which can be seen in portraits of Kitty Fisher 1757/9 (private collection), Countess of Albemarle 1760 (National Gallery, London) and Young Woman Leaning on a Ledge 1760 (private collection).20 These characteristics can also be seen clearly in this portrait of Anne Liddell. In 1759 Lady Caroline Fox described this portrait of the Duchess of Grafton as ‘dressed like a strolling actress’.21 Poses were repeated, often very closely for convenience, and Reynolds made no secret of this – for example, the portrait of Elizabeth, Duchess of Beaufort, 1763 (private collection) is remarkably similar.22 The materials and techniques of the portrait Support The auxiliary support is a pine wood stretcher with four diagonal corner members, thus placing the date of this stretcher to before 1850, after which date diagonal corner members were no longer used.23 There is now a secondary glue-paste lining support which has a seam running down the whole length. The original canvas still has its turnover edges and given that there are no tack holes in the lining canvas or the stretcher which align with the tack holes in the original canvas’ turnover edges, it is likely that the stretcher was replaced at the same time that the lining canvas was added at some point in the first half of the nineteenth century. Cusping marks that align with tack holes on the original canvas turnover edge indicate that the canvas has not been cut down significantly. The original canvas is closely woven and plain weave. There is a selvedge edge on the left-hand side of the painting. Reynolds worked to standard sizes of canvases. The original standard ‘Whole-Length’ size of the time was 94 × 58 in;24 this painting measures 95 × 59 in., its slightly larger size being due to the fact that the canvas has been keyed out. In 1757 Reynolds would charge 60 guineas for a whole-length portrait25 and a payment of this sum is recorded in the ledger on 19 January 1767, a full eight years after the painting was completed; the ledger merely states ‘Duke of Grafton for the Duchess’.26

Figure 2. Photomicrograph detail of a loss in the paint layers revealing a buff-coloured ground.

ground, revealing the colour underneath (figure 2). Reynolds made frequent use of buff-coloured and grey grounds unlike his Italian counterparts, who often used red grounds.27 He himself mentioned in 1752 the use of ‘grey grounds’, and in 1755 Mason noted the use of a ‘light coloured ground’ in the painting of ‘Robert, 4th Earl of Holderness’.28 It is noticeable in this painting that there are two distinct ground tones, one lighter than the other. A cross-section revealed that there is indeed a double ground separated by a glue layer. In the middle of the century Reynolds would often use double grounds separated by a glue layer. There is a high proportion of chalk mixed in with the ground layers, as confirmed by scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive X-ray (SEM-EDX) analysis. Chalk is a commonly found component of the grey grounds found on pre-primed canvases provided by colourmen in this period.29 By the middle of the eighteenth century many paintings by Reynolds seem to be executed on canvases commercially prepared by colourmen, a common practice for artists at the time.30 The SEM-EDX analysis also shows that the ground is mostly comprised of lead white with starch and aluminium used as extenders, both cheap materials. Northcote, a pupil of Reynolds for two years in the early 1770s, mentions that in his later career Reynolds started painting directly on unprepared, raw canvas, so this use of a commercially primed canvas remains consistent with his 1750s practice.31 Underdrawing Although there is no carbon-based underdrawing visible in the infrared reflectograph (IRR) (figure 3), this does not exclude the possibility of an underdrawing carried out in chalk or non-carbon based paint. The art historian Ellis Waterhouse states that Reynolds had never learned to draw properly, and

Ground A buff-coloured ground is evident in local areas where the paint layers have delaminated from the

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Figure 5. Cross-section from the urn showing an undermodelling bottom layer (a) with red lead, carbon black and lead white.

Figure 6. Cross-section from the tree showing a cooltoned undermodelling layer (a).

Figure 3. Portrait of Anne Liddell, infrared reflectograph. Figure 7. Cross-section from the sky showing a deep blue undermodelling layer (a) with Prussian blue.

paint layers rather than in an underdrawing,32 an approach that may well explain the lack of a visible underdrawing on the painting. Underpainting of drapery and background An undermodelling layer is visible across nearly all the cross-sections taken from different areas of the painting (figures 4–7). The colour appears consistent in each paint passage, but not across the whole painting. It is likely that Reynolds worked out the initial composition using these layers; the crosssections show that these initial layers were not painted on while still wet. Beneath the red robe can be seen an orange underlayer with red lead, carbon black and lead white pigment particles. In the urn there is a similar colour but with the inclusion of more black pigment particles. The trees exhibit a cooler tone but also with the inclusion of red lead and there is a deep blue underlayer of Prussian blue in the sky.

Figure 4. Cross-section taken in normal light (top) and in UV light (below) from the red drapery (shadow) revealing an undermodelling layer (a) with red lead, carbon black and lead white, followed by two red glaze layers (b and c) and a number of thinner layers of varnish and glazes (d and e).

so he leant on his mastery in the Venetian tradition, in colour, chiaroscuro and in the arrangement of masses in which the outlines are never hard. Forms and composition were worked out in the

Subsequent layers Glazes and more opaque scumbles often sit directly on top of the underlayers, a method of painting which is typical of Reynolds’ portraits from the

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Figure 9. Detail of a pentimento in the sky to the left of her right sleeve.

Figure 8. X-radiograph of the head of the sitter.

1750s and later. Portraits from this time often show his personal interpretation of Venetian painting techniques, with bright, undiluted glazes applied on a monochrome underpainting.33 This was Reynolds’ attempt to replicate the translucent look of aged oil paint and glazes he saw in Old Master paintings34 and also corresponds to recent analysis of his paintings from the Wallace Collection where it was noted that ‘tinted glazes’ and opaque ‘scumbles’ were applied directly on top of a near monochrome underpainting.35 A number of pentimenti are visible, indicating how Reynolds would paint something in and change his mind later. We can see how the composition was worked out in the paint layers, which may also explain the lack of an underdrawing. Such pentimenti are visible in the sky above Anne Liddell’s head and extend down into her hair (figure 8). This area is heavily impastoed and is indicative of some kind of jewelled headpiece, which can be seen in the X-radiograph, that she may originally have been wearing. Subsequently the hair was extended upwards to cover some of this headpiece. The IRR provides greater detail of how this headpiece might have looked originally (figure 3). Further pentimenti are visible in the sky to the left of her right sleeve (figure 9) and in the sky to the left of her coronet (figure 10). The IRR shows the coronet to have been larger as well as the hand which holds it. According to Waterhouse, Reynolds would constantly go back and forth trying to outline the forms and composition in the paint layers themselves rather than relying on a steady

Figure 10. Detail of a pentimento in the sky to the left of her coronet.

underdrawing.36 From the number of pentimenti visible, this painting would corroborate this. This practice is also noticeable in other aspects such as the sky that can be seen over the dress and vice versa.

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Painting technique in specific areas of the portrait The drapery It is known that by 1755 Reynolds had employed the services of a drapery painter called Peter Toms,37 who may well have had a hand in this painting. As previously mentioned, Anne is painted in her coronation robes, which can be seen in numerous other portraits by Reynolds. The brushwork is broad, liberal and expressive. Highlights are built up from the shadows and mid-tones, which are depicted using glazes and often painted together wet-in-wet, particularly in the red robe. They have a thinner application and are clearly laid in first. The yellow ochre brocading is evidently painted over the top of the modelling in thin, fairly transparent applications. A cross-section taken from a shadow area of the red drapery also evidences this technique (figures 4a and 4b). There are two thick red glazes over the top of the underlayer, which provide the modelling of the mid-tones, followed by a number of thinner applications of varnish and glazes over the top. The top glaze layer is dark in tone, probably to delineate the shadow of the dress. It is difficult to state definitively from the paint handling whether this is the hand of Reynolds or an assistant. However, it does have a marked similarity to the appearance of the drapery of some his early portraits such as Mrs Hugh Bonfoy, 1754 (St German Estate, Cornwall) and Lucy, Lady Strange, 1755 (private collection). In these early portraits, the paint handling is extremely free and expressive. Anne Liddell’s drapery lacks the fine detail present in portraits where the drapery is believed to be by a drapery painter, such as in Lady Elizabeth Keppel, 1761 (Woburn Abbey).38 Unfinished portraits by Reynolds are often of finished heads to which clothes have yet to be added, sometimes because the paintings were then sent out to his drapery assistant. However, considering the number of sittings for this portrait it is possible that Reynolds himself painted the drapery.

head, and which was still wet. He had nothing upon his palette but flake white, lake and black; and, without making any previous sketch or outline, he began with much celerity to scumble these pigments together, till he had produced, in less than an hour, a likeness sufficiently intelligible, yet withal, as might be expected, cold and pallid to the last degree. At the second sitting, he added, I believe, to the three other colours, a little Naples yellow; but I do not remember that he used any vermilion, neither then or at the third trial.39 However the X-radiograph of Anne Liddell’s head suggests there is no couch layer present: it is similar in appearance to other X-radiographs of heads without a couch layer such as Dr Samuel Johnson, 1756 (National Portrait Gallery, London). The face painting technique instead seems to bear a greater resemblance to the technique uncovered in the portrait of Francis Beckford painted by Reynolds in 1755/6 which displays a very similar wrinkling in the paint passages of the flesh. Beckford shows no signs through X-radiography of having a lead white couch application, however, Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy imaging of cross-sections from the flesh in this painting showed a high concentration of drying oil in the lowest layer, indicating that the first application of paint in the face area is medium rich. It was concluded that the wrinkling is due therefore to an excessively medium-rich underlayer rather than a couch of lead white.40 The cross-section from the portrait of Francis Beckford also revealed the lowest paint layer to be pink and showed no evidence of wet-in-wet mixing, which would be expected had Reynolds painted directly into a wet ‘ground of white’.41 XRF helped to analyse some of the pigments present in the flesh. The results from Anne’s pink cheek show peaks for mercury, indicating the presence of vermilion, an iron peak suggesting the presence of red earth and a lead peak indicating the presence of lead white or red lead The presence of vermilion is interesting as it was not detected in the portrait of Francis Beckford. However it is listed in Reynolds’ Italian notebook of 1752 as one of the pigments to be used when painting heads:

The face It was not appropriate to undertake invasive analytical methods on the face as there was no damage from which to take a sample. X-radiography and IRR helped to establish the painting technique and X-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectroscopy was employed to ascertain the pigments used, which in turn was helpful in establishing the technique. Wrinkling inherent in the paint layers is evident in the face (figure 11). A white ‘couch’ layer, described by William Mason, was initially thought to be the likely culprit for this wrinkling. Mason, a poet and friend of Reynolds, was invited to witness the artist painting Robert D’Arcy, 4th Earl of Holderness in 1755. Having attended all the sittings, he described Reynolds’ practice as follows:

The ground colour, blue-black and white. Light: first sitting the features, marked firm with red: next sitting the red colours. Blue-black, vermilion, lake, carmine, white, drying oil.42 Therefore on a grey ground he first blocked features in red, then worked up the face in red colours and glazed over this. It is quite surprising that vermilion has been detected in this painting as it is known that after his return from Italy, in the mid-to-late 1750s, Reynolds did not like using it. He even declared: ‘I can see no vermilion in flesh.’43 At this time he preferred using

On his light coloured canvas he had already laid a ground of white, where he meant to place the

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red lakes in flesh, particularly carmine which is known to have been used in the portraits of Francis Beckford, 1755/56 and James, 14th Earl of Erroll, 1762.44 Reynolds stated: ‘The truth is for many years I was extremely fond of a very treacherous colour called carmine, very beautiful to look at, but of no substance.’45 Carmine is also listed by Northcote as being on Reynolds’ palette for flesh painting in 1755 in the following transcription of Reynolds’ own memorandum: Black, blue-black, white, lake, carmine, orpiment, yellow ochre, ultramarine, and varnish. To lay the palette; - first lay carmine and white in different degrees; second, lay orpiment and white, ditto; third lay blue black and white, ditto. The first sitting, for expedition, make a mixture on the palette as near the sitter’s complexion as you can.46 The fact that Anne Liddell’s face looks very pale would indicate that the red colours may not be comprised of just the vermilion and red earth inferred from XRF results, but may also include a red lake, which has faded to leave the face excessively pale. The portable XRF (pXRF) equipment used in the study would not be able to detect any red lake present as the elements involved are too light. The subject of Reynolds’ use of red lakes is discussed in greater detail later. This analysis helps to create a picture of how Reynolds used several sittings to build up the face layer by layer. The first sitting seems always to have been aimed at producing a formal likeness, then he would add modelling and more tone through glazes and scumbles in subsequent layers. It should be noted that without undertaking any invasive analysis such as from a cross-section, it is tempting to rely on sources such as Mason or examinations of a single portrait, for example Francis Beckford, and assume that similar techniques would be seen in each of Reynolds’ portraits. Considering the outcome of this analysis, it seems Reynolds was not interested in adhering to the same rules each time he painted a portrait.47 To summarise, it is likely in this portrait that Reynolds used an excessively medium-rich bottom layer thus producing the wrinkling effect now seen. It is also probable that he used a range of red pigments, including a now-faded lake, and lead white to build up the details of the face layer by layer. Reynolds continued to change and adapt his technique throughout his career. In early portraits he generally finished painting the head before moving on to the background, but he clearly deviated from this method later in his career as evidenced in the double portrait, Lord Rockingham and Burke, in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge: much of the background is completed, leaving a blue-black and white ‘lay-in’ on the faces to be worked up into a finished state.

Figure 11. Photomicrograph detail of wrinkling in the paint layers in the face of the sitter.

What is clear is that Reynolds was consistent throughout his career in trying to emulate Italian masters, even if the way he went about it changed with each painting. This method, which he claimed was based in particular on the techniques of Correggio and Titian, was summed up in a note on his Self-Portrait given to Burke, 22 June 1770: First and second paintings done only with black, ultramarine and white mixed with either oil or copaiba. Yellow ochre, lake, black and ultramarine, without white used for third painting applied as glazes and scumbles. Glazing medium would have been wax and venice turpentine or some other such mixture.48 Materials Northcote’s Life of Sir Joshua Reynolds: comprising original anecdotes of many distinguished persons, his contemporaries; and a brief analysis of his discourses and Sir Joshua’s Technical Memoranda (most of which were included in his ledgers) provide good sources for understanding the materials Reynolds used, particularly when coupled with technical study. Binding media Oil Although medium analysis was not undertaken as part of this study, it is known from written sources and technical analyses that linseed oil boiled over lead was most frequently used as the binding medium by Reynolds during the 1750s.49 An unspecified drying oil has been identified in the portrait of Francis Beckford and four samples from Lord Ligonier, 1760, identified unmodified linseed oil.50 However Reynolds frequently disregarded the traditional method of painting with a drying oil, often using excessively oil-rich underlayers which resulted in cracking. For example, William Mason, writing about the portrait of Lord Holderness painted in 1755 stated that it: ‘very soon faded, and soon after the forehead particularly cracked, almost

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Figure 12. Photomicrograph (PLM) showing lake particles from the red drapery bearing a close resemblance to an insect-based red lake such as cochineal.

Figure 13. Another photomicrograph (PLM) showing lake particles from the red drapery bearing a close resemblance to an insect-based red lake such as cochineal.

to peeling off, which it would have done long since, had not his pupil Doughty repaired it’.51 This painting of Anne Liddell appears stable by comparison, thus indicating that Reynolds probably made use of an oil-based medium.

A good example of his experimentations can be seen in his Studio Experiments in Colour and Media which hangs in the Royal Academy. Legible inscriptions describing his experiments on this canvas translate into ‘Copal Varnish & White’, ‘Orpiment, white, yellow with the varnish’ and ‘Prussian Blue and wax’.61

Resins In cross-sections viewed in ultraviolet (UV) light, the upper thick red glaze in the drapery displays a milky fluorescence suggesting a resinous component in the binding medium. Reynolds regularly mixed resin in with oil to make glazes, particularly just after his return from Italy when he wished to emulate the brilliant colour and thickly painted work of the pictures he saw there.52 He made frequent use of two resins – mastic and copal – mixed in with the paint medium.53 In the portrait of Francis Beckford he used a mastic varnish in the medium of the glaze.54 In 1755 it is noted that he mixed an unspecified ‘varnish’ with his palette for flesh painting.55 He often thought resin superior to oils: as Northcote wrote to his brother in 1771, ‘the oils give the colours a dirty yellowness in time’.56 Other binding media Later in his career Reynolds experimented further with various binding media. He loved textured, impastoed surfaces that Benjamin Haydon called a ‘rich cheesy surface’.57 To this end Reynolds started using wax, either alone or in various combinations. The 1766 ‘Sitters book’ bears the first mention of Reynolds’ use of wax as a binding medium.58 He then went on to experiment with a range of resins, balsams and megilps as standalone binding media or mixed together in complex mixtures.59 Sometimes he used different media at different stages and passages of the same painting, leading to the infamous problems now seen such as large drying cracks and widespread flaking. In the previously mentioned letter to his brother, Northcote described Reynolds’ method as having ‘an inconvenience full as bad, which is that his pictures crack; sometimes before he has got them out of his hands’.60

Pigments/extenders Extenders SEM-EDX and polarised light microscopy (PLM) confirmed the presence of starch, coccoliths and aluminium in the ground layer, indicating the presence of starch, aluminium hydroxide and chalk. These were used as extenders mixed in with a lead white ground. White SEM-EDX, PLM, XRF and cross-sections show the presence of lead white. This quite clearly comes from the ground layers, as well as being mixed in with lighter paint passages, such as in the flesh. Black Through a process of elimination SEM-EDX confirmed that the black pigment mixed into many layers is a charcoal black. Blue Few particles of blue can be seen in cross-section but SEM-EDX has confirmed Prussian blue. Green The greens are typically mixed greens – pure green pigments were fairly unstable at this time. In the cross-section from the tree (figure 6) we see in the undermodelling layer a mixture of carbon black, lead white and a yellow pigment, probbly an earth. Yellow The yellow pigment detected displays a high percentage of iron in SEM-EDX indicating a good quality earth pigment.

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Red Red pigments are dominant in many of the crosssection samples. It is clear, however, that there are a number of different red pigments used. SEM-EDX has detected the presence of red lead mixed in with modelling layers (sample 4) while XRF has confirmed the presence of mercury, indicating vermilion both in the red robe and flesh. The use of a red lake is clearly evident in the red robe. In the cross-section taken from the drapery, the red lake layers do not fluoresce orange, which would be characteristic of madder (figure 4b). From the appearance of the cross-sections, the lake in the drapery is largely mixed in with other pigments. Carbon black, red earth and vermilion are combined with the lake in this layer. This is not an unusual practice as, for example, red lakes are mixed with other pigments in the tablecloth of Francis Beckford.62 Through the use of PLM from the drapery, it was noted that the lake particles bear a close resemblance to an insect-based red lake such as cochineal – the lake often called carmine (figures 12 and 13). SEM-EDX confirmed that the red lake has been precipitated onto an aluminium substrate, but it was not possible to examine the lake further using other instrumental means for this study. It is known that Reynolds made frequent use of red glazes for layering in drapery and flesh paint passages throughout his career, particularly in the 1750s, for example in Francis Beckford, 1755/6,63 Captain Robert Orme, 1756, and Countess of Albemarle, 1760. All of these have been identified as cochinealbased lakes under the umbrella name of carmine.64 In reference to the painting, Robert D’Arcy, 4th Earl of Holderness, 1755, William Mason recorded the presence of a lake mixed principally with lead white for the flesh and alone for the sitter’s crimson drapery. This lake has subsequently been confirmed to be a dyestuff obtained from cochineal through the use of high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC).65 There is little evidence that madder lakes were readily available to Reynolds and his contemporaries during the eighteenth century, and according to David Saunders and Jo Kirby he did not seem to have used brazilwood lakes.66 As mentioned above, in Northcote’s 1755 transcription of Reynolds’ own memorandum he notes the use of fugitive reds, most particularly carmine. This therefore gave way to what became known as Reynolds’ so-called ‘flying colours’.67 In the portrait of Anne Liddell it can be observed that the flesh paint of the face has faded whereas the lake in the glaze of the drapery has retained its colour better. A similar observation can be made concerning the Countess of Albemarle, 1760. It has been noted that the fading of red lake in flesh occurs when a cochineal dyestuff is mixed with lead white.68 The use of cochineal would also account for the red lake in the drapery remaining in good condition as it is not mixed with lead white.

Cochineal is derived from an insect in Mexico which was brought to Europe by the Spanish in the early sixteenth century. For many decades it was prepared by the same method used for lakes containing kermes. The dyestuff was extracted from dyed textile shearings using alkali, with alum added to precipitate the dyestuff on a substrate of amorphous hydrated alumina.69At the end of the sixteenth and beginning of the seventeenth century, developments occurred which fundamentally changed the method of making cochineal pigments. Dyestuff began to be extracted from the insects with alcohol and an aqueous solution of alum was added to precipitate the pigment (the dyed textile stage was therefore bypassed). Another development saw the precipitation of the insect dyestuff, predominantly carminic acid, in the form of a metal complex or salt. The resulting pigment lacks the high proportion of hydrated alumina substrate present in a conventional cochineal lake.70 One other such recipe called for the boiling of cochineal with a little kermes, alder (bark) and potash alum. The liquid is filtered off and left to stand for the carmine to settle out. By the eighteenth century, therefore, there were many ways in which to make cochineal. All varieties were known to fade relatively quickly and so in later years Reynolds abandoned its use. It is now understood that the exclusion of UV radiation decreases the rate of colour change in carmine therefore visible light exposure and UV radiation are held responsible for this organic colorant’s fugitive nature.71 Conclusion Many identifiable elements in this painting follow Reynolds’ known practice of the 1750s, both in terms of style and material. This is a portrait which has animation and directness and none of the stiff, formal poses so often associated with portraiture before this date, for example by Reynolds’ teacher Thomas Hudson. The materials employed in this painting are characteristic of those identified in other 1750s paintings by Reynolds such as a double ground separated by a glue layer, the liberal employment of glazes sitting directly on top of an undermodelling layer to replicate the luminous colours of Venetian painting he so admired, and the use of cochineal red lake – a pigment he soon abandoned after the 1750s due to its fading tendencies. The painting technique is relatively stable, and there is no inclusion of the waxes, balsams or megilps so often associated with his later paintings. At this stage in his career Reynolds was in the ascendency, courting the landed gentry and cultivating relationships with those people whose political ambitions he endorsed. This is a portrait which embodies his ambitions – Anne, an associate of the ‘whiggish Bedford set’ and a new member of the aristocracy, is portrayed as divine and splendid.

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This is a portrait which clearly shows Reynolds’ admiration for the words of Richardson: The great business of painting I have often said, and would fain inculcate, is to relate a History, or a fable, as the best historians, or poets have done; to make a portrait so as to do justice at least, and sometimes not without a little compliance; and that to the mind, as well as to the face, and person; To represent nature, or rather the best of nature; and where it can be done, to raise and improve it; to give all the grace and dignity the subject has, all that a well instructed eye can discover in it, or which such a judgement can find ‘tis capable of in its most advantageous moments.72 Notes

1. M. Kirby Talley, ‘“All good pictures crack”: Sir Joshua Reynolds’s practice and studio’, in N. Penny (ed.), Reynolds, London 1986, p. 56. 2. Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 56. 3. M. Postle, Joshua Reynolds: The Creation of Celebrity, London 2005, p. 19. 4. British Museum sketchbook, LB12, f. 9 verso. 5. N. Penny, ‘An ambitious man: the career and the achievement of Sir Joshua Reynolds’, in N. Penny (ed.), Reynolds, London 1986, p. 20. 6. Penny 1986 (note 5), p. 19. 7. http://www.getty.edu/art/collection/artists/851/ jonathan-richardson-the-elder-british-1667-1745/ (accessed June 2014). 8. Penny 1986 (note 5), p. 20. 9. Penny 1986 (note 5), p. 19. 10. Postle 2005 (note 3), p. 272. 11. Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 56. 12. Duke and Duchess of Grafton, personal communication, Cambridge 2015. 13. Penny 1986 (note 5), p. 21. 14. Postle 2005 (note 3), p. 113. 15. Duke and Duchess of Grafton, personal communication, Cambridge 2015. 16. Penny 1986 (note 5), p. 22. 17. J. Reynolds, ‘Sitters book’, Royal Academy of Arts Archive, GB/0397, 1757. 18. J. Reynolds, ‘Sitters book’, Royal Academy of Arts Archive, GB/0397, 1758–9. 19. D. Mannings, Sir Joshua Reynolds: A Complete Catalogue of his Paintings, 2 vols, New Haven and London 2000, vol. 1, p. 194. 20. Penny 1986 (note 5), pp. 22– 3. 21. B. Fitzgerald, Correspondence of Emily, Duchess of Leinster (1731– 1814). Vol.1 Letters of Emily, Duchess of Lenister, James, First Duke of Leinster, Caroline Fox, Lady Holland, Dublin 1949, p. 218. 22. Mannings 2000 (note 19), pp. 419– 20. 23. Simon Bobak, personal communication, London 2015. 24. Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 58. 25. Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 58. 26. M. Cormack, ‘The ledgers of Sir Joshua Reynolds’, The Walpole Society, vol. 42, 1968– 70, pp. 105– 69, esp. p. 125. 27. Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 66. 28. Mason quoted in Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 66. 29. C. Leslie and T. Taylor, Life and Times of Sir Joshua Reynolds, London 1865, p. 466. 30. Alex Gent, personal communication, Cambridge 2014.

31. W. Whitley, Artists and their Friends in England, 1700– 1799, London 1928, p. 282. 32. E. Waterhouse, Reynolds, London 1973, p. 20. 33. Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 56. 34. A. Gent, ‘Reynolds, paint and painting: a technical analysis’, in L. Davis and M. Hallet (eds), Joshua Reynolds: Experiments in Paint, London 2015, p. 44. 35. A. Gent, A. Roy and R. Morrison, ‘Practice makes imperfect: Reynolds’s painting technique’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 35, 2014, pp. 19–20. 36. Waterhouse 1973 (note 32), p. 20. 37. Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 57. 38. E. Edwards, Anecdotes of Painters who have Resided or been Born in England: with Critical Remarks on their Productions, London 1808, p. 54. 39. Mason quoted in R. Redrave and S. Redgrave, A Century of British Painters, Ithaca 1947, pp. 56–57. 40. H. Brett, J. Townsend, R. Jones, J. Boon and K. Keune, ‘“I can see no vermilion in flesh”: Sir Joshua Reynolds’ portraits of Francis Beckford and Suzanna Beckford, 1755–6’, in M. Spring (ed.), Studying Old Master Paintings: Technology and Practice, London 2011, pp. 201–7. 41. Brett et al. 2011 (note 40). 42. Leslie and Taylor 1865 (note 29), p. 60. 43. J. Northcote, The Life of Sir Joshua Reynolds, vol. 2, London 1819. For The Earl of Erroll see Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 65. 45. Brett et al. 2011 (note 40), p. 205. 46. Northcote 1819 (note 43), p. 78. 47. Brett et al. 2011 (note 40), p. 207. 48. Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 67. 49. Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 62. 50. R. Jones, J. Townsend and J.J. Boon, ‘A technical assessment of eight portraits by Reynolds being considered for conservation treatment’, in J. Bridgland and J. Brown (eds), Preprints of the 12th Triennial ICOM-CC Meeting, Lyon, 29 August–3 September 1999, London 1999, p. 376. 51. W. Cotton, The Rev. W. Mason’s Observations on Sir Joshua’s Method of Coloring, London 1859, p. 51. 52. M. Postle, ‘Reynolds in the 1750s: technical matters’, 2008, http://www.npg.org.uk/research/conservation/ restoration-of-portrait-of-samuel-johnson-by-sirjoshua-reynolds.php (accessed June 2014). 53. Kirby Talley 1986 (note 1), p. 62. 54. Jones et al. 1999 (note 50), p. 376. 55. Northcote 1819 (note 43), p. 78. 56. Whitley 1928 (note 31), p. 282. 57. B.R. Haydon, The Diary of Benjamin Robert Haydon, vol. 4, Cambridge 1963, pp. 232–33. 58. H. Dubois, ‘“Use a little wax with your colours, but don’t tell anybody”: Joshua Reynolds’s painting experiments with wax and his sources’, Hamilton Kerr Institute Bulletin, vol. 3, 2000, pp. 97–106, esp. p. 98. 59. Dubois 2000 (note 58), pp. 102–03. 60. Whitley 1928 (note 31), p. 282. 61. Dubois 2000 (note 58), p. 99. 62. Jones et al. 1999 (note 50), p. 376. 63. Brett et al. 2011 (note 40), p. 204. 64. J. Kirby, M. Spring and C. Higgitt, ‘The technology of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century red lake pigments’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 28, 2007, pp. 88–89. 65. D. Saunders and J. Kirby, ‘Light-induced colour changes in red and yellow lake pigments’, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 15, 1994, p. 79. 66. Saunders and Kirby 1994 (note 65), p. 92.

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67. Brett et al. 2011 (note 40), p. 201. 68. Brett et al. 2011 (note 40), p. 204. 69. Kirby et al. 2007 (note 64), p. 70. 70. Kirby et al. 2007 (note 64), p. 71. 71. Saunders and Kirby 1994 (note 65), p. 93. 72. J. Richardson, An Essay on the Theory of Painting, London 1725, p. V.

Author Pia Dowse graduated from Falmouth University in 2010 with a degree in Fine Art. After undertaking placements in conservation studios in Bristol and ZĂźrich she graduated with a postgraduate diploma in Easel Painting Conservation from the Hamilton Kerr Institute in July 2015. She was recently awarded a scholarship from the Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust to undertake an internship at the National Museum of Wales, based in Cardiff. She is now employed as Assistant Easel Painting Conservator at the National Museum of Wales. As well as working as a conservator, she continues with her own fine art practice.

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On the unorthodox origin and Byzantine journey of the Lavenham Madonna CHRISTINE SLOTTVED KIMBRIEL AND PAUL JOANNIDES Abstract This article explores the origin of, and subsequent alterations to, the Madonna from Little Hall Museum in Lavenham, Suffolk, which received treatment at the Hamilton Kerr Institute in 2008. Today, the painting conveys the impression of being an orthodox icon. However through technical examination of the surviving original passages, and by making a reconstruction that demonstrates the elaborate decorative techniques employed, it is argued that before the extensive alterations that it has undergone, this panel painting was in fact a refined Venetian devotional object created in the first half of the fifteenth century. Alternative attributions to Gentile da Fabriano (c.1370–1427) or his pupil, Jacopo Bellini (c.1396–1470) are offered.

Introduction Eight years ago, a Madonna on panel arrived for treatment at the Hamilton Kerr Institute (figure 1).1 It came from Little Hall, a late fourteenth-century house in Lavenham, Suffolk, purchased and restored by the Gayer-Anderson brothers between 1924 and 1936 and now a museum containing the brothers’ remaining and rather eclectic collection.2 According to T.G. Gayer-Anderson’s 1956 guidebook, Major R.G. Gayer-Anderson acquired the painting in Cairo from an Egyptian dealer in

Figure 1. Unknown artist, Madonna, fifteenth century, tempera (?) on panel, 83.1 × 61 cm: after conservation treatment. Little Hall Museum, Lavenham. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

antiquities who claimed that it had come from ‘an old church in Constantinople’. The guidebook also states that ‘Professor Bernard Berenson considered it to be “Italo-Byzantine of the 14th century probably painted in Crete or South Italy”.’3 However, the painting exhibits traits that point to the early Italian Renaissance as well as to the tradition of orthodox icons and indeed, upon seeing it in the studio, on an unrelated visit to the Institute, Paul Joannides immediately recognised it as the work of one of the Italian ‘International Gothic’ painters. We later learned from Little Hall that experts from Christie’s had previously suggested an attribution to the Florentine painter Giovanni Francesco di Toscani (1372–1430). What remains of the original scheme is elusive and at best only partially evident through the wear, overpainting and alterations that the painting has suffered. The results of the limited technical examination were not pursued further during the structural stabilisation of the panel substrate in 2008. However, the findings have continued to haunt our imaginations and this article is an attempt to do justice to the painting’s original splendour by examining the evidence discovered during treatment. In the first section we describe the main features of the alterations that the Lavenham Madonna has undergone. In the second we attempt to gain a better understanding of the painting’s original decorative scheme through technical analysis and the making of a reconstruction using materials and techniques corresponding as closely as possible to those of the original. The final section builds upon the preceding investigation to discuss possible attributions. The Madonna transformed The present appearance of the Lavenham Madonna differs considerably from its original state. It is evident that the outline of the Virgin’s wimple has been altered and expanded through overpainting. The transition between the figures and the gilt background and haloes is uneven, and the X-radiograph image clearly shows that the Virgin’s outer garment

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originally had a more complex outline (figure 2). The X-radiograph also evidences a diamond pattern of lines scored into the wood under the gilt background, but not under the figures; this inconsistency makes no sense as part of a preparatory process – had scoring been required for gesso application, the wooden surface would have been consistently treated throughout. Moreover, the craquelure patterns of the gesso beneath the figures as opposed to the background – which are also clearly visible in the X-radiograph – are different, suggesting that the two gesso applications did not respond to stresses induced by movement in the panel in the same way or over the same length of time. This is strong evidence that the entire background is non-original and it also explains the notable discrepancy in the quality of the punched scheme between the gilt haloes and the surviving decorative gilding on the figures. In the painting’s present state the Virgin and Child are set against a gilded background with the Greek letters MP ӨY, IC XC and O WN, the abbreviations for ‘Mother of God’, ‘Jesus Christ’ and ‘I am who I am’ (Exodus 3:14), painted in vermilion, as is the red border.4 The iconography is close to one of the most common representations of the Virgin and Child in the icon tradition, the Hodegetria, but there are some key differences. The Hodegetria, ‘She Who Shows the Way’ is depicted carrying the Christ Child on her left arm, gesturing with her right hand as if presenting him. She gazes directly at the spectator, to whom she indicates the way to salvation. The Christ Child holds a scroll in his left hand and lifts his right in a gesture of blessing. But the Little Hall painting differs from the Hodegetria type in that the Virgin does not engage directly with the spectator, whereas Christ does; she holds him without gesturing; there is no scroll in his hand; his garment differs from the traditional Greek ‘chiton’; and his feet are not sandaled. The bare lower legs and feet do in fact occur in a less common Orthodox type found originally in the icon of Kykkos, in which the Christ Child is swinging his bare legs and feet over the Virgin’s arm on which he is seated.5 The rest of the Kykkos iconography however is closer to the Eleusa, ‘The Virgin of Tenderness’, but it is possible that a westernised conflation of the Hodegetria and the Kykkos icon types served to inspire the iconography of the Lavenham Madonna. In any case, the inconsistencies outlined above make it highly unlikely that the original composition was that of a painter of Orthodox icons.6 Furthermore, the soft and subtle modelling of shades and highlights, still visible despite darkening and overpainting, differ dramatically from the schematically stylised folds of garments in a traditional icon. The naturalism of this painting extends to the chubby legs of the Christ Child as well as to his toothy grin. The image, in short, is contradictory: the inscription is that of an icon while the formulation of the group – and its characterisation, modelling and colour – suggest an origin in early Quattrocento Italy. It would seem that a highly decorative Madonna was simplified and

Figure 2. Madonna: X-radiograph.

transformed into a superficial approximation to an icon and that this transformation was carried out to a much lower artistic standard than the original. This is an interesting and unusual reversal of the well-known practice of modernising. This devotional panel, that is to say, was not created as an icon but was, at some point, ‘iconised’. It is debatable when this transformation occurred. There was a trade in the nineteenth century of simplifying and reworking existing paintings – especially damaged ones – in order to give them a falsely primitive air and a worn appearance and this may be the case here.7 However, it seems to us that the technique used for the altered parts is not specifically characteristic of the nineteenth century. There are several indications that the panel was at one point an object of worship: the lettering and red border seem to have been renewed and repaired at least once; a large damage under the left arm of the Christ Child is likely to be the result of a candleburn; and spatters on the surface seem to be of candle wax. In addition, the five small holes around the left hand of the Virgin were probably made by nails used to attach a hand-shaped adornment of metal foil, frequently found on Greek Orthodox icons.8 The fact that the left hand of the Virgin was found to be less dirty than the faces and other limbs would support this suggestion. Two holes on each side of both heads imply that similar adornments were also attached here. Furthermore, the change to the outline of the Virgin’s head might be an attempt not just to cover the transition between the figure and its non-original surround, but to assimilate it

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Figure 3. Cross-section in UV light from the red tunic of the Christ Child showing the original paint scheme (a) followed by a thick build-up of non-original applications (b).

Figure 6. Micrograph showing individual gold flecks on the maphorion next to the Christ Child’s left foot.

to the shape of the Virgin’s head in a traditional icon,9 just as the straightening of the Virgin’s outline towards the bottom of the painting now more closely resembles the fall of the maphorion in many icon paintings. Thus we are inclined to think that the transformation was carried out quite early, and that in its altered form the painting was adapted for a Christian-Orthodox context where it served as an object of worship for an extended period. These modifications may have been prompted, and perhaps facilitated, by damage already suffered by the panel. However they serve further to obscure the original scheme, whose former glory can be appreciated only on closer examination.

Figure 4. Detail of the modelling on the maphorion executed with gold ‘flecks’.

Figure 5. Cross-section in bright-field illumination from the darkened maphorion with shell gold application (a). The consistent thickness of the buckling lines of gold indicates that the shell gold is made from gold leaf.

The original paint scheme In the painting’s current state it is a challenge to imagine how the surface would have looked just after its creation. The skin-tone paint layers are exceedingly thin and missing in large part. Increasing transparency of paint over time inevitably contributes to this impression, but the surface appears to have been subject to considerable wear, and the X-ray image shows very little evidence of lead white in the limbs and face of the Virgin; however, the face of the Christ Child both in the X-radiograph and on visual observation is more intact.10 The verdaccio underpaint is clearly visible, in particular in the face of the Virgin, but infrared reflectography (IRR) does not reveal a discernible, distinct underdrawing. Judging by the tonality of the flesh paint, there is also a thin application of a green earth layer, which contributes to the modelling in the neck and face of the Virgin. The red of the cheeks and chin now appears overstated because the paler flesh paint that would have sat on top of it is missing; the better preserved face of the Christ Child makes a good comparison. Flaking, with subsequent paint loss, has occurred in both the

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Virgin’s maphorion and in the Christ Child’s red tunic. A cross-section from the red tunic shows no fewer than 15 layers of which only five appear to be original (figure 3): three thin and even paint layers containing red lake particles and different proportions of lead white sit on top of a layer of gold leaf.11 The original layer structure implies a traditional and skilfully executed egg tempera technique, very different from the secondary layers consisting of thick and uneven red paint intermingled with layers of varnish, probable wax and dirt. A sample taken from the Virgin’s dark maphorion does not include the ground or any underlayers, but it does show a single, very thick, paint layer (170 µm) followed by a build-up of four layers of non-original surface coatings and dirt. Judging by this sample, the paint layer is extremely porous with large, bright blue particles of azurite and ultramarine in what is now a brown medium.12 One or two translucent, reddish particles suggest an admixture of red lake, which would have counteracted the greenish tinge of the azurite. But while the medium may have become discoloured over time, it could also represent nonoriginal applications of glue, oil or resin (although the medium does not fluoresce) that have sunk into the porous, coarse blue paint surface. This brown matrix has contributed to the darkening of the paint to the extent that it now appears black. Although scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive X-ray (SEM-EDX) analysis found no lead in the specific sample, portable X-ray fluorescence (pXRF) spectroscopy suggested that a consistent layer of lead is present throughout, most likely as a lead whitecontaining underlayer for the thick, unadulterated blue paint layer. The consistent blocking of X-rays in the maphorion is likewise an indication of this. The X-radiograph image does not reveal if this underlayer was modelled, but it is questionable, judging by the thickness of the paint layer, whether any modelling would have shown through effectively, nor is there a clear indication of modelling in the uniform, darkened upper paint layer itself. However the maphorion does present the illusion of copious folds achieved through the application of numerous gold flecks (figure 4). The density of this golden ‘flecking’ is carefully modulated to suggest the bunched fabric towards the fastening point of the open garment across the chest, and the plentiful fabric of the sleeves draped over the proper right arm. Although mordant gilding is considerably more common for decorative patterns on garments in panel painting, a cross-section confirms that in this case, shell gold made from finely ground gold leaf was used (figure 5). Modelling is achieved not only by varying the density of the flecks, but also by the fact that some flecks sit over others, giving greater covering power (figure 6). Such subtlety could not have been achieved using a mordant gilding technique. Although obscured by inherent darkening, dirt and varnish layers, this paint passage displays a highly refined and unusual technique, which

Figure 7. Detail of the Virgin’s gilt neckline trim with scored letters surrounded by sgraffito decoration.

Figure 8. Infrared detail of the gilt trim on the Virgin’s maphorion showing the floral scrollwork pattern.

could not be appreciated until the passage was re-saturated with varnish in 2008. Despite considerable wear, the sophistication and skill of the original decorative scheme is also evident in the gold borders at the Virgin’s neckline and along the hem of the maphorion. ‘Ave Mat(er)’ was scored into the gesso with a fine point by an assured hand prior to the application of bole and water gilding (figure 7). A very dark paint was applied over the gold and a sgraffito technique was employed to surround the letters with floral motifs. Similarly, the gilt trim of the maphorion was incised with lines to indicate the backbone of a floral pattern, now so damaged it shows best in IRR (figure 8). Although only a trace survives, it appears that a reddish-brown glaze was applied over the gold, and that the scored floral pattern still visible through the glaze served as a guide for elaboration of the pattern with sgraffito. The evidence brought to light through close examination and technical analysis of the Lavenham Madonna consistently supports the impression, when looking past the alterations and wear, that the original painting belongs in the early Italian

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Figure 9. Reconstruction of a central section of the Madonna.

Renaissance tradition, and that in its unaltered state, it would have impressed with highly refined, decorative details employed to embellish and elevate the subject matter. Reconstructing central passages of the Madonna: some observations While close examination of the painting rewarded us with a better understanding of the alterations to the composition and of the materials and techniques employed for the original scheme, it also served to illustrate how much has been altered or lost. A reconstruction of a central section of the painting was therefore made based on contemporary treatises and the findings presented above, in order to explore some of the painting’s techniques and to grapple with the difficulties of achieving the refined expression attained by the artist (figure 9). The finished reconstruction offers a qualified suggestion as to the appearance of the Madonna in its original state. While we are not making a strong claim for its accuracy, given the severity of the painting’s visual and material loss, the reconstruction does give a glimpse through the veil of changes that now obscure the original object and an insight into the painting process that cannot be obtained simply by examining the finished work. Because cross-sections taken from the painting show a build-up with a gesso ground followed by discrete and thin paint layers indicative of traditional tempera technique, the reconstruction was executed according to Cennino Cennini’s instructions on

panel painting in egg tempera.13 Making the reconstruction clearly illustrated how elaborate the original scheme was, and especially in what refined and varied ways the artist used gilding. It confirms that the present condition of the Lavenham Madonna very largely obscures the fact that it was executed to exceptionally high standards and with an elaborate decorative scheme characteristic not of the Byzantine tradition, but of the highly ornamental styles of early fifteenth-century Venice. Creating the reconstruction demonstrated that this work would have been anything but quick to execute, and that special attention and care was taken to exploit the decorative quality of gold applied as water gilding, mordant gilding and shell gold (figure 10). Gold would have dominated the appearance of the finished painting and would also have suffused the painting process, as shown by the fact that gold leaf would have been the first ‘colour’ to be laid on the white ground and the very last to be applied as mordant for the finishing touches. Whether the delicate gold pattern was applied to the blue maphorion before the painting in of the flesh areas, which Cennino instructs his reader to complete ‘When you have done and painted clothes, trees, buildings and mountains’, or at the very end, is impossible to know.14 However, when reconstructing passages that include gilding in one form or the other, the resulting surface of sgraffito and superficially applied dots of shell gold are not as robust as the surrounding painted passages, and although planned from the beginning, they may have been finished last. Based on the findings outlined above, the essential designs of the floral scrollwork trim were scored into the gesso prior to gilding the reconstruction. The ‘Ave Mat(er)’ letters of the neckline trim were likewise incised, and extra fine vertical lines scored within the outline of each letter which, when gilt, made them appear brighter due to the changed reflection of light. It was also found that the lines of the floral scrollwork of the maphorion trim remained faintly visible after applying the glaze over the gilding and thus provided a basic blueprint for the run of the foliage pattern that could be easily followed and embellished when doing the sgraffito work. While mordant gilding and sgraffito for making designs on cloth of gold were standard techniques on panel paintings,15 the use of shell gold was only introduced into Italian painting in the late fourteeth century;16 and even towards the middle of the fifteenth century, it was still novel to some, as Florentine illuminator Matteo de’ Pasti’s 1441 letter from Venice to his patron Piero de’ Medici testifies: ‘since being in Venice, I have learnt something which could not be more suited to the work I am doing for you, a technique of using powdered gold like any other colour’, and later emphasising ‘that you may see a thing that has never been done like this before, embellishing with this powdered gold’.17 Although earlier and contemporary manuscripts include several recipes for the making of shell gold,

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Figure 10. Details of figure 9: (a) sgraffito (floral scrollwork trim) and mordant gilding (sleeve); (b) gold flecks on the maphorion; (c) the Virgin’s gilt neckline trim with scored letters and sgraffito.

the purpose is typically defined as specifically for making gilt letters and illuminations in manuscripts.18 The recipes are remarkably varied and of greater or lesser complexity, adding ingredients such as vinegar, quicksilver, sulphur, urine, honey and (rock) salt to the processes of dry or wet grinding of gold filings or gold leaf, often followed by thorough washing and sometimes heating over the fire. As a cross-section clearly indicates that the shell gold used for the Lavenham Madonna’s maphorion is derived from gold leaf, shell gold for the reconstruction was made by grinding gold leaf with rock salt using a mortar and pestle and washing out the salt with water. The recipes mention a range of binding media: gum, egg white, ox gall and parchment glue, and advise the artist how to burnish the letters to achieve increased lustre. To achieve a good covering power, the blue paint – a mixture of equal parts of natural ultramarine and azurite with a small addition of red lake – was applied in three layers. The paint passage dried with a very matt, velvety surface, somewhat rough to the touch, and it was striking how much paler and perfectly blue this mixture appeared on the reconstruction compared to the original, darkened paint passage. Some experimentation was done by varying the degree of grinding of the azurite, which initially was of a very coarse and dark grade. Minimal grinding resulted in a slightly darker paint, but the application was difficult and resulted in a patchy appearance with an extremely rough surface, so the azurite was therefore ground further to achieve a workable paint.19 As no clear evidence of modelling in the darkened maphorion is discernible on the original painting, no modelling was done on the reconstruction. Initially, egg yolk and whisked egg white were tested as binding media for the gold flecking, however the resulting gold ‘paint’, either when simply mixed with the medium or when ground together with a muller, was lumpy and not very workable. Gum arabic improved the homogeneity only a little; many of the historical recipes actually suggest that gold paint can be kept in a horn once

mixed with the binder (usually gum), and that one can even fill a feather pen or pencil in order to write with the distempered gold.20 Attempting to replicate the gold flecking on the reconstruction made it evident that to achieve subtle variations of intensity in these gilt passages was no easy task. The tendency of the ground gold to clump on the brush reduced controllability in the application, and to achieve gradation, the paint had to be diluted for the mid-tones, several applications being necessary to achieve strong highlights. It is quite possible that the artist achieved a more workable pigment for the original painting, but consistent control of the loading and pressure of the brush would still have been necessary, and this method of modelling the fabric would have demanded great patience and meticulous concentration. After drying, the flecking appeared much duller than the water and mordant gilt passages. Several recipes call for the burnishing of letters in manuscripts executed with shell gold so burnishing of the gold flecks was therefore attempted. In spite of the coarseness of the paint surface beneath, it was found that both the egg- and gum-bound shell gold could be burnished to a degree relatively easily, increasing the lustre significantly. It was however noticeable that where the blue paint below was rougher, burnishing was not as effective, which may explain why the artist chose not to use a higher grade of azurite.21 The painter of the Lavenham Madonna In the preceding sections of this article, the material evidence of a tantalising work of art has been explored through technical investigation and a reconstruction that has aimed to draw out and display key aspects of the processes that created the now severely damaged original painting and their highly refined results. When asking the inevitable question – who might have painted it? – the techniques and final appearance of the decorative passages, i.e. the gilt and glazed trim, the shape of the letters and the gold flecking in particular, constitute clues from a technical art-historical perspective. However these clues form part of a greater whole,

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Figure 12. Gentile da Fabriano, Madonna and Child with Angels, c.1426–27, tempera on panel, 110.4 × 66.3 cm, Velletri, Museo Capitolare. © 2016. Photo Scala, Florence.

Figure 11. Gentile da Fabriano, Madonna and Child, fresco (detail, after restoration). Orvieto, Duomo. © 2016. Photo Scala, Florence.

and the composition of the painting, the interaction and conception of the figures, offer equally important evidence for the painting’s authorship. The present writers agree on the approximate date and stylistic location of the painting, but differ in their view of its authorship. Despite the damage and the overpainting, the image remains powerful and dramatic. The Virgin and Child dominate the pictorial field and the rich play of their colours still carries an emotional charge. From the distribution of colour, the extremely high quality of the tooling on the gold and the combination of ultra-sophisticated technique and power of design, this painting does not seem to be by a minor master. In Joannides’ view these traits are characteristic of the relatively few surviving works of Gentile da Fabriano and his immediate circle; indeed, the attribution to Giovanni di Francesco Toscani pointed in this direction, since for a period he worked under

Gentile’s influence. But comparison with Giovanni Toscani’s work indicates a different hand and mind. In its deployment of plastic form, richness of surface detail and intensity of colour, this painting is by an artist of a much higher level than Giovanni and there is no trace of the late Trecento Florentine traits that mark Giovanni’s work – formal inflation, dullness of contour, indifference to effects of light, comparative poverty of surface – nor of his devotion to exaggeratedly Ghibertesque drapery folds.22 The morphology, especially of the grinning Christ Child and the Virgin’s head as it can be seen in the X-radiograph (the painted surface with the face’s flattened appearance is very compromised) is immediately reminiscent of Gentile da Fabriano himself, rather than a follower, and the forms are closest to those found in his work of the 1420s.23 The rounded and remarkably energetic Christ Child may be compared with the Child in the fresco fragment in Orvieto of 1425 (figure 11) and the facial types of the two Virgins are also similar.24 The arrangement, with the Virgin’s left hand supporting the weight of the Child, unique in Gentile’s surviving work, implies an engagement with advanced Florentine art, whose influence Gentile increasingly felt when he worked in the city and which is seen

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strongly in what is generally regarded as his latest surviving work, the Madonna in Velletri, in which the relation between substantiality of form and the decorative play of gold-threaded drapery edges is notably similar (figure 12).25 The original shape of the Virgin’s head in the Lavenham Madonna, which gives her a slightly round-shouldered look, and the angularity of the right-hand side of her wimple are both features of his style.26 The pink cheeks both of the Virgin and the Child are a constant in his work and, although this is not unique to Gentile, it is more pronounced in his painting than in that of any of his contemporaries. Large rectangular treatments of the Virgin on single panels, as opposed to parts of ensembles, were comparatively rare in this period and only gradually became popular towards the middle of the century. Gentile had painted at least one earlier, the panel now in Ferrara, but the format was exploited with particular vigour in Florence, especially by Donatello and his circle whose Madonnas in marble and terracotta of the 1420s gave a strong lead to painters. Gentile clearly responded intensely and rapidly to Florentine art, reducing the quantity of decoration in his Quaratesi Polyptych and simplifying and aggrandising his forms, to the extent of borrowing a composition from the Brancacci Chapel in his Quaratesi Dossal. In particular, Gentile’s Yale Madonna – usually dated to his Florentine period – embodies his fascination with the development of the ‘window’ view so powerfully exploited by Donatello, with its direct address to the worshipper (figure 13).27 Comparable qualities are seen in the Little Hall Madonna and support for it a relatively late dating. In its original form, rather than against a gold ground, the figures in the Little Hall Madonna might have been set within an entirely painted environment, like the Yale Madonna, or a partially painted one, as in the Velletri Madonna, but unless a copy of it in its original state is located, we are unlikely to find out. Slottved Kimbriel, in her interpretation of the surviving evidence, comes to a slightly different conclusion on the question of authorship. She agrees that the painting was produced within a Gentilesque context and sees strong similarities to works attributed to him. However, in her opinion several features and details point rather to Jacopo Bellini, perhaps Gentile’s most important pupil. As noted above, the most significant and unusual technical feature in the Lavenham Madonna is the artist’s sophisticated use of flecks of gold to model the drapery.28 Gentile da Fabriano certainly applied gold dots in many of his drapery designs, but when a close comparison is made between the styles of ‘flecking’ in the Lavenham painting and in Gentile’s works, there is a clear difference. Without exception, Gentile’s flecks are larger and applied systematically, often in rows (figure 14). The result is a more decorative and abstract expression that does less to suggest the illusion of three-dimensionality. In contrast, Jacopo Bellini takes the use of gold flecks to another level. In

Figure 13. Gentile da Fabriano, Virgin and Child (1871.66), 1420–24, tempera on panel, 91.8 × 62.8 cm, Yale University Art Gallery, Yale.

several of his draperies, he employs gold flecking to great effect, applying the gold paint in much smaller points and varying the density to convincingly suggest rich, softly textured cangiante fabric in blue and gold (figure 15). This skilfully executed elaboration of the technique is a signature device of Bellini. It has been suggested that Gentile da Fabriano trained in a Venetian manuscript workshop, and that Jacopo Bellini himself undertook manuscript illumination.29 Supporting this assertion is documentary evidence for the fact that Bellini’s nephew, manuscript illuminator Leonardo Bellini, was apprenticed to Jacopo for no less than 12 years,30 and it is interesting to note that an illuminated manuscript by Leonardo in the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge does indeed show repeated use of shell gold for the delicate modelling of draperies (figure 16). Few Madonnas attributed to Jacopo Bellini survive, but the handful that do display a remarkable diversity in their composition and the extent to which detailed, rich decoration was employed to embellish the surface varies greatly. Floral scrollwork for the decorative trims on garments, and in the Lochis Bequest Madonna and Child (figure 17) for the entire background, is present in several compositions dating from his early to his late works, such as the San Alessandro Annunciation, the Uffizi Madonna and Child (figure 18) and the much-damaged Metropolitan Museum composition

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Figure 14. Virgin and Child (figure 13): detail of the head of the Virgin with gold dots decorating the green inside of her veil.

Gentile da Fabriano is an undisputed master of International Gothic, giving his figures the delicate features and elongated, often slightly serpentine sway to their posture so characteristic of this style, along with the extensive use of rich and detailed decorative elements. But while Jacopo Bellini in many ways continues in Gentile’s footsteps, he simultaneously adopts a more monumental, weighty expression that is exemplified in most of his Madonnas.31 It is thought that he was the household member and pupil of Gentile da Fabriano named as ‘Jacobus de Venetiis’ mentioned in Florentine legal documents of 1423.32 The monumentality of his rendering of the Virgin and Child may thus have been influenced by his encounter with the Florentine Renaissance of the 1420s, and it is characteristic that the hands of his Madonnas are less elongated and stylised than Gentile’s (see for example the hands of the Madonnas in the Uffizi, the Accademia and the Lochis Madonnas). When comparing the hands of the Lavenham Virgin and her Child to these examples, strong similarities in the conception of form are clear.

Figure 15. Jacopo Bellini, Virgin with Child, c.1450, tempera on panel, 94 × 66 cm, Galleria dell’ Accademia, Venice, Italy, © Cameraphoto Arte Venezia/Bridgeman Images: (a) full (b) detail.

(figure 19). These examples show strong stylistic similarities to the scrollwork on the trim of the Lavenham painting. Gentile da Fabriano makes less use of decorative floral designs and with few exceptions uses lettering or Pseudo-Kufic in the decorative trims on draperies. His decorative designs generally have a more geometrical character than Bellini’s organic, convoluted swirls.

In view of the broadly recognised fact that Jacopo Bellini explored Tuscan theory on perspective, and that other aspects of his art likewise in some ways place him closer to the developing Florentine Renaissance tradition of the 1420s and 1430s than Gentile, it may seem paradoxical that Byzantine elements are retained in his visual language. In both the Lochis Bequest and LACMA Madonna and

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Figure 17. Jacopo Bellini, Madonna and Child (81LC00230), Lochis Bequest, c.1440, tempera on panel, 64.9 × 52.4 cm, Bergamo, Accademia Carrara,  Comune di BergamoAccademia Carrara.

Figure 16. Leonardo Bellini, Book of Hours, fol. 57v Presentation in the Temple (manuscripts 147), c.1470: detail. The Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge. © Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.

Child compositions, round medallions are present in the top corners of the background, in the LACMA composition containing the Greek letters ‘MP ӨY’, ‘Mother of God’.33 These medallions in Byzantine Virgin depictions would contain angels, and although these were adopted only to a limited extent in Italy, they can be found for example in a Madonna Eleusa stone relief of the thirteenth century in the S. Zeno Chapel of San Marco, Venice.34 It has also been noted that Bellini’s colour scheme tends towards a less sumptuous palette,35 as exemplified in the Uffizi Madonna, where muted colours of purple-brown and greenish-blue dominate, a trait that in some ways echoes the Eastern icon tradition of indigo, purple, cinnamon and ochre.36 It is tempting to see the visual impact of Byzantine golden splendour, so prevalent throughout the mosaics of San Marco, echoed in Bellini’s signature trait of shimmering, gold-flecked garments. But while it is echoed, Bellini’s masterful handling of powdered gold paint – a skill quite possibly learned initially from Gentile – exploits its ability to be dull and subtle as well as radiant and bright in rendering a three-dimensional effect so convincingly that its illusionism thoroughly removes it from the stylised,

Figure 18. Jacopo Bellini, Madonna and Child, c.1450, tempera on panel, 69 × 49 cm, © Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence, Italy/Bridgeman Images.

visual language of the Eastern Church. At the same time however, it is tempting to propose that the Byzantine elements in a Madonna and Child composition by Bellini might make a reappropriation

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Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Wendy Barnes of Little Hall Museum, Lavenham, Ray Marchant, conservator at the Ebury Street studio, Jill Dunkerton, conservator at the National Gallery, Eva Haustein-Bartsch, Kustodin at Ikonen-Museum Recklinghausen, Lynne Harrison, at the time of communication conservator at the British Museum, Dr Paola Ricciardi of the Fitzwilliam Museum, Dorothy Mahon and Morgan Spatny of the Metropolitan Museum, and Rupert Featherstone, Dr Spike Bucklow, Mary Kempski and Victoria Sutcliffe of the HKI.

Notes

Figure 19. Jacopo Bellini, Madonna and Child (59.187), probably 1440s, tempera on panel, 87.6 × 63.5 cm: detail of the gilt trim on the Virgin’s maphorion with floral scrollwork pattern, gift of Irma N. Straus, 1959. Image © The Metropolitan Museum.

and adoption of such a devotional image into an Orthodox context more plausible. If the Lavenham Madonna is indeed by Jacopo Bellini, then the reconstruction, effectively demonstrating the richness of the original scheme of this much-altered painting, can at the same time be seen to be incorrect in the assumption that no further modelling was done of the originally blue maphorion prior to applying the shell gold. In all of Bellini’s surviving depictions of gold-flecked garments, the substrate colour does indeed have modelling, thus broadening the range between light and shadow well beyond what could be achieved in the reconstruction. Bellini’s palette may also be wrongly represented in the reconstruction because although it can be assumed that the colours will have changed over the centuries from their original intensity, his use of muted tones is still notable. While a typical, crimson-coloured lake such as kermes was chosen for the red passages, all of Bellini’s reds are of a more orange hue that instead could suggest the use of lac lake. Likewise, the blues of Bellini’s compositions are not today in any way as pure or bright as that achieved in the reconstruction. These conclusions demonstrate that basing a reconstruction on the limited amount of information and evidence available from a radically altered work of art has its limitations. However, alongside the technical analysis, it has also provided valuable insights into the practical creation of the Lavenham painting, and has served to illustrate aspects of the decorative scheme that have facilitated two possible new attributions of this intriguing work of art.

1. The treatment undertaken in 2008 consisted of structural treatment to the panel support, consolidation of flaking paint, surface cleaning and localised applications of MS2A varnish to resaturate and protect the painted surfaces. 2. Important pieces – mainly ancient Egyption objects – were donated by Major R.G. Gayer-Anderson to various national and provincial institutions, including the Fitzwilliam Museum. T.G. Gayer-Anderson, The Gayer-Anderson Hostel for Art Students: A Short History and Guide, Lavenham 1956, pp. 11–12. 3. Gayer-Anderson 1956 (note 2), p. 48. Gayer-Anderson also mentions that the Greek lettering is added on fresh gold-leaf patches. He believes this was done when the panel was ‘received into the Greek Church’. In addition he assumes that the worn, gilded frame is an eighteenth-century, Western European addition. 4. Presence of vermilion (HgS) was confirmed using pXRF. The red border is considered intrinsic to an Orthodox icon’s function; see L. Harrison with J. Ambers, C. Cartwright and R. Stacey, ‘Orthodox icons at the British Museum: an approach to ethical conservation practice’, in Icons: Approaches to Research, Conservation and Ethical Issues, International Meeting, Athens 1996. See also K. Weitzmann, The Icon. Holy Images. Sixth to Fourteenth Century, London 1978 and G. RamosPoqui, The Technique of Icon Painting, Kent 1990. 5. The Kykkos icon was brought to the attention of the authors by Stella Panayotova from the Fitzwilliam Museum. 6. Personal correspondence with Dr Eva Haustein-Bertsch, Ikonen-Museum Recklinghausen, 18 April 2008. 7. C. Helstosky, ‘Giovanni Bastianini, art forgery, and the market in nineteenth‐century Italy’, Journal of Modern History, vol. 81, no. 4, 2009, pp. 793–823. 8. Personal correspondence, Lynne Harrison, at time of communication conservator at the British Museum, 1 May 2008. 9. The rather large, rounded shape of the Virgin’s head in the icon tradition relates to the bulk of the traditional padded head-roll worn under the maphorion, often visible just above the ears. 10. pXRF analysis in the flesh tone areas suggests the presence of lead (white) and traces of vermilion and earths. 11. No further indications of the presence of gold leaf were found in pXRF analysis of the red garment. As the sample was taken close to the original outline of the Christ Child’s shoulder, it may indicate that the original scheme of the background included gilding. 12. The presence of azurite mixed with ultramarine particles was established with SEM-EDX analysis. The blue pigment particles extant in the sample were typically 10 µm in diameter. 13. As the basic techniques of fourteenth- and fifteenthcentury tempera painting have been extensively discussed elsewhere and are not the main subject of

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this article, they will not be explained further. The painted reconstruction was largely guided by L. Broecke, Cennino Cennini’s Il libro dell’arte: A New English Translation and Commentary with Italian Transcription, London 2015. 14. Broecke 2015 (note 13) p. 190. 15. Both techniques are described by Cennino (Broecke 2015 (note 13), pp. 177–79), and mordant gilding was employed in Italian panel painting by the midthirteenth century (Broecke 2015 (note 13), p. 182). 16. Broecke 2015 (note 13) p. 17, n. 28. The use of shell gold in manuscript illumination is thought to have originated from north of the Alps and was used by the eleventh century or earlier. F. Ames-Lewis, ‘Matteo de’Pasti and the use of powdered gold’, Mitteilungen des Kunsthistorischen Institutes in Florenz, vol. 28, no. 3, 1984, pp. 351–61, esp. p. 354. 17. Quoted in Ames-Lewis 1984 (note 16), p. 352. 18. The following manuscripts include one or more recipes for making shell gold: Theophilus (eleventh century?), the Montpellier Manuscript (c.1300– 1430), Cennini (c.1400), Jehan Le Begue (1431) and the Bolognese Manuscript (first half of the fifteenth century). Cennini writes ‘If you want to work on panel or on paper’, thus being the only one of these sources to mention the application in panel painting; Broecke 2015 (note 13), p. 206. 19. Lapis Lazuli Medium 10510 from Kremer Pigmente and Azurit Weber from Dirk Weber Feine Künstlerpigmente were used. To assimilate the average pigment particle size of 10 µm established in the cross-section taken from this paint passage, natural ultramarine and azurite pigments of different qualities were set as PLM samples to establish their typical particle size. The ultramarine pigment chosen had particle sizes in the range of 3–20 µm. The azurite had particle sizes of 10–100 µm – considerably larger than those employed in the original painting. It was therefore not surprising that further grinding was found to be essential for achieving a workable paint. 20. See for example the recipes in the Le Begue and Bolognese Manuscripts in M.P. Merrifield, Medieval and Renaissance Treatises on the Arts of Painting. Original Texts with English Translations. Two Volumes Bound as One, New York 1967 (1999 edition), pp. 240, 296, 304. 21. Azurite loses its intensity of colour the finer it is ground. Pure, coarse azurite will have a deep blue colour closer to ultramarine, but depending on the particle size and the presence and properties of the associated minerals malachite and cuprite, the colour can be more greenish and less intense; R. Ashok (ed.), Artists’ Pigments: A Handbook of their History and Characteristics, vol. 2, Oxford 1993, pp. 25–26. 22. For an acute recent study of Giovanni’s Ardinghelli Altarpiece see L. Sbaragio in L. Laureati and L. Mochi Onori, Gentile Fabriano e l’altro Rinascimento, exh. cat., Fabriano 2006, VI.10, pp. 276–83. 23. The standard monographs are K. Christiansen, Gentile da Fabriano, London 1982 and A. De Marchi, Gentile da Fabriano, Milan 2006 (first published in 1992). 24. But Gentile was alert to weight and volume much earlier, as his Ferrara Madonna shows: see C. Guerzi, no. II.2, pp. 136–39 in Laureati and Mochi Onori 2006 (note 22). 25. See R. Bartoli, no.VII.3, pp. 302–03 in Laureati and Mochi Onori 2006 (note 22). 26. The X-radiograph of the Virgin’s head is also reminiscent of the well-known drawing in the Musée du

Louvre, Inv. 2590. Although the most plausible attribution for this cartoon is to Pisanello, it shows (as emphasised by D. Cordellier, Pisanello, le peintre aux sept vertus, exh. catalogue, Paris 1996, no. 38) that artist at his most Gentilesque. 27. But it is placed in Gentile’s Brescian period by De Marchi 2006 (note 23), pp. 122 and 135. 28. Ames-Lewis 1984 (note 16), pp. 354–55 reaches the same conclusion, and the execution of the reconstruction for this article likewise confirms this. 29. C. Eisler, The Genius of Jacopo Bellini, New York 1989, pp. 24–25, 534–35. 30. Eisler 1989 (note 29), p. 531. 31. Eisler 1989 (note 29), p. 33. 32. Eisler 1989 (note 29), p. 26 and Christiansen 1982 (note 23), pp. 164–66. 33. In the Lochis Bequest painting, it is unclear due to wear what the medallions originally contained, although faint traces of paint could suggest figurative elements, i.e. angels. 34. J.H. Stubblebine, ‘Byzantine influence in thirteenth-century Italian panel painting’, Dumbarton Oaks Papers, vol. 20, 1966, p. 89. For the St Zeno Chapel relief see V. Lazareff, ‘Studies in the iconography of the Virgin’, The Art Bulletin, vol. 20, no.1, 1938, pp. 26–65, fig. 15. 35. O. Pächt, Venetian Painting in the 15th Century, London 2003, p. 39. 36. P. Hills, Venetian Colour: Marble Mosaic, Painting and Glass 1250–1550, New Haven and London 1999, p. 143.

Authors Christine Slottved Kimbriel has a BA in the History of Art and a second degree in Conservation-Restoration Science, specialising in the conservation of pictorial art, from the School of Conservation, the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Copenhagen. Since 2009 she has been employed as a full-time paintings conservator at the Hamilton Kerr Institute, recently taking up the position of Assistant to the Director. Paul Joannides is Emeritus Professor of the History of Art at the University of Cambridge. His main interests lie in the painting, sculpture, drawing and, to a lesser extent architecture of the Italian Renaissance. He has published extensively on such artists as Masaccio, Michelangelo, Raphael and Titian and, to a lesser extent, on other major figures such as Fra Angelico, Botticelli and Leonardo. He has also published on French late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century painting, and has a strong interest in the relations between literature and the visual arts in that period. His main publications include: The Drawings of Raphael, London 1983; Masaccio and Masolino, London 1993; Titian to 1518: The Assumption of Genius, New Haven 2001; Michel-Ange, Ecole, Copistes, Inventaire des Dessins Italiens, Paris 2003; and Reactions to the Master: Responses to Michelangelo in the Sixteenth Century, co-edited with Francis Ames-Lewis, Farnham 2003. His exhibitions and catalogues include: Michelangelo and his Influence, an exhibition of 68 drawings for the Royal Collection, staged in three venues in the USA and two in the UK, October 1996–April 1998; Raphael and his Age: Drawings from the Palais des Beaux-Arts, Lille, exhibition of 57 drawings shown at the Cleveland Museum of Art and the Palais des Beaux-Arts, Lille, 2002–2003; and Drawings by Michelangelo and his Followers in the Ashmolean Museum, Cambridge 2007.

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Forty years of student projects as waymarks on the professional path SALLY WOODCOCK Abstract The final year project has been part of the Hamilton Kerr Institute’s curriculum from the outset and 40 years of student projects are housed in the library as a bound reference set. The projects include both the replicas for which the Institute is known and short-term research projects that reflect the preoccupations of both the Institute and the wider field of paintings conservation. Aspects of the development of the conservation profession can be traced through these projects, as well as the impact of the digital revolution on both research and the presentation of research over a 40-year period. The strengths and limitations of these projects are discussed and suggestions made for the direction of future research, followed by the abstracts of all of the 91 final year project papers.

Introduction The copying of paintings is a good habbit and training especially with a good piece. This leads their hand beyond their understanding and makes them do a case beyond their powers.1 Forty years is approximately the duration of the working life of a conservator – it is also the period, to date, since the foundation of the Hamilton Kerr Institute (HKI). Surveying HKI’s output of final year student research projects produced since the Institute’s establishment in 1976 affords an opportunity to follow some aspects of the progress of the paintings conservation profession over a critical period in its development, taking it from restorer to conservator, craft to profession, analogue to digital. While the projects are limited by time constraints, the availability of paintings and the interests and abilities of their student authors, they are also influenced by the prevailing concerns of the profession, its understanding of what constitutes research and its desire to improve materials and expand treatment options. As such, this body of research is useful in identifying aspects of the wider field’s development. It is also very much the product of the organisation in which it was created, and reflects both the strengths and limitations of the ‘modest but viable Institute, which might expand to its full potential’ envisaged by Cambridge University at HKI’s foundation.2 From the outset it was anticipated that HKI’s students would complete a ‘copy of a painting and a set project’, generating two pieces of written work in their final year. While the library contains two pieces of work for students graduating in the 1970s, in the 1980s this generally drops to one, until 1986 when Sally Thirkettle convincingly reasserts the scheme with a supernumerary three projects, a number only equalled by Lorraine Maule in 1999. After this, the expectation of two substantial pieces

of work, one of which records the fabrication of the student copies displayed on the walls of HKI, is consistently represented in the library’s holdings for almost every year in which students graduated. Although details of the historical stipulations for these pieces of work are unrecorded, the present requirements are as follows: a Project, of no less than 5,000 words and no more than 10,000 words in length, to include a practical component, on a subject area of interest to the student and approved by the Degree Committee … a Copy, i.e. the examination of a painting and the reproduction of the artist’s technique, accompanied by documentation of no less than 5,000 words in length and no more than 10,000 words in length.3 In several cases it is clear that the projects did indeed come from, or inspire, a student’s personal interest in the research area, confirmed by the correlation between a project and the subsequent career of its author. Among these are Marika Spring, whose early interest in medium identification has led to a career in conservation science, and Spike Bucklow, who further explored his interest in perception in his doctoral thesis on crack patterns, as well as a number of conservators who have built on their research areas in their studio practice. Even if a project did not lead to a lifelong research interest, it offered its author an opportunity to explore a subject purely for the interest it held, an opportunity that might not be repeated in a subsequent career. Forty years of professional development While the use of the word ‘restorer’ to describe contemporary practitioners is used in some projects of the 1970s, its appearance as late as 1983 is probably a result of the presence of German-trained staff at HKI, as ‘conservator’ was in general use in the UK by this time, reflecting what Agnes Ballestrem

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identified in 1978 as the prevailing usage in the English-speaking conservation field in contrast to the continued use of the word ‘restorer’ in countries where Romance and Germanic languages were spoken.4 Ballestrem’s own compromise term ‘conservator-restorer’ was not adopted by the authors of the projects and is largely absent from British conservation, apart from appearing in the name of the professional organisation The British Association of Paintings Conservator-Restorers, changed from The Association of British Picture Restorers in 2003. The change from ‘restoration’ to ‘conservation’ is seen by many as representing a less interventive, more investigative approach to paintings by conservators in the final decades of the twentieth century, and this change is reflected in early projects that concentrate on the detection of overpaint, the relatively new field of the scientific examination of paintings and some early ground work on historical techniques covering flesh, landscape and drapery painting as well as Italian painting methods. What is absent from the research is the practice of conservation itself, with neither treatment nor preventive conservation addressed in the 1970s, perhaps reflecting some of the uncertainty surrounding current practice expressed, for example, at the Greenwich Comparative Lining Conference of 1974.5 From 1983, although treatment continues to be avoided, some of the issues conservators encounter in their practice are examined: blanching, pigment deterioration and the perennial question of picture varnishes. The 1990s highlight the rise in the importance of technical art history, with papers based on documentary sources noticeable in the early part of the decade, and thereafter technical art history never loses its dominant position, reflecting its pre-eminence both inside and outside HKI. From the turn of the century students start to look at their own practices with Minako Ota’s attempt to regenerate aged glue linings, Claire Chorley’s work on strip-lining, Nicola Pause’s investigation into egg tempera retouching, practised almost uniquely at HKI, and Alison Smith’s assessment of low molecular weight varnishes, reflecting the Institute’s emphasis on practical work in its training programme. Another strand of training, preventive conservation, is taken up as a research area in Annabel Robinson and Rebecca Kench’s work on climate control and Hayley Woodhouse and Tabitha Teuma’s related research projects on mould. This again reflects activity in the wider field, where work on preventive conservation was drawn together at the Ottawa conference of the International Institute for Conservation in 1994.6 The twenty-first century brought a new self-awareness, with projects examining the past history of the profession and looking forward to its future development, suggesting that students were alert to the maturing of the field, which brought with it a recognition of the value of its own history. This self-examination is also evident within HKI where Ann Massing was researching

French restoration practices and at the Department of Technology of the Courtauld Institute of Art in London, where Hero Boothroyd Brooks completed research into the history of practice in English easel painting conservation.7 There are gaps in the subject matter coverage, and conservation science, research methodologies and ethics are only lightly touched upon in the third year projects. The dearth of scientific analysis and experimentation is explained, in part, by the limitations of the analytical apparatus at HKI, the fact that the majority of the students have prior training in the humanities, and the constraints of time. As Daniela Leonard found when setting up fading tests aged both artificially and naturally, the final year project provided insufficient time in which to generate significant results. Students are encouraged to be realistic about what can be achieved in two months and 5–10,000 words. Considerations of ethical and methodological issues, profiting to some degree from the advantages of hindsight, are perhaps easier to approach later in a career, although Victoria Sutcliffe, Adèle Wright and Pia Dowse accept and explore their challenges. One feature more commonly found in later reports, which brings them into line with one aspect of standard research methodology, is the inclusion of a literature review in the opening chapters. The projects are representative of developments in the wider field in a very direct way, showing the revolutionary impact of digitisation on many aspects of conservation. Looking at the reports from either end of the 40-year period is akin to comparing M. Kirby Talley’s 1981 Portrait Painting in England, with its typewritten text and drawn illustrations, to Paul Taylor’s 2015 Condition, with its crisp details of ageing paint layers.8 Both make a valuable contribution to the field, and it is important to resist ascribing a hierarchy based on the quality of the illustrations. In the same way, the projects begin with typed and, in one case, handwritten texts illustrated, if at all, by slides or monochrome photographs. There is a gradual transition to desktop publishing and digital imaging from the late 1980s, and by 1999 authors have fully embraced computerisation and digital photography, embedding images in the text from 2007. The ease with which digital photography allows students to record their work in particular transforms the projects detailing the manufacture of copies, leading to a much clearer understanding of the sequential stages of construction. In some early projects neither an image of the original nor its copy was provided, making it difficult to assess the complexity of one and the effectiveness of the other. A fully illustrated project, such as Lara Wilson’s of 2003, highlights the richness of illustration that might have been offered by earlier projects had the appropriate technology been available, and draws attention to the strengths of HKI’s current photographic and imaging capacity.

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The advances that digital imaging offers for the examination of paintings is also illustrated in the projects, in particular in the presentation of infrared images. A comparison of Emma Boyce’s 2009 image of the entire surface of a painting showing underdrawing very clearly with Sarah Murray’s dependence in 1987 on the infrared ‘patchwork quilt’ graphically illustrates the clarity and legibility gained through digital imagery in all areas apart from, perhaps, the reproduction of cross-sections. Although as early as 1987 Larry Keith included photographs of cross-sections in his reports, many students continue to use graphical representations of cross-sections in order to clarify the stratigraphy of a section’s layers. In this, they reflect the continued use of drawn cross-sections by many professional paint analysts and provide the last link to the days when M. Kirby Talley had to draw his own pictures of palettes and their paint. While the internet has transformed research in the twenty-first century, offering both visual and text-based resources that would have remained unidentified and inaccessible to earlier students, it does not feature in final year project bibliographies until 2003, and paper-based publications continue to be important, reflecting the strength of HKI’s library holdings. The perhaps rather late adoption of the internet as a research resource may owe more to the timing and speed of the introduction of a broadband connection to rural Cambridgeshire as a whole, and HKI in particular, than to a lack of digital curiosity on the part of the Institute’s students. Forty years of student research By far the most common area for research, determined by the requirement for a copy to be made on the basis of technical research, is the exploration of the materials and techniques of a particular work or an individual artist. The case study that was the bread-and-butter of early conferences continues to furnish HKI with a useful learning opportunity, and the understanding gained through the preparation of a copy is explicitly recognised by authors such as Nicola Christie and Aella Diamantopoulos. While many authors admit to problems, uncertainties and unintended outcomes in the construction of their copies, they often face their most common difficulty at the outset in the lack of availability of suitable supports on which to paint.9 Obtaining support material of the correct size and type for copies is often problematic: Aella Diamantopoulos chose to copy an icon on cedar of Lebanon as a result of the unsurprising ‘lack of availability of suitably sized planks of juniper from local carpenters’ and Alison Smith, who could not find a suitable linen to replicate Tudor ticking, settled for cotton, the twill weave being given preference over the weight and fibre of the original. As an exercise in the acceptance of the material compromises faced by both artists and conservators, this may be the copy’s first important lesson.

The copies clearly demonstrate the range of practical tasks the students undertake, from forging nails to punching gilding, and result in an enhanced appreciation of the artistic techniques and skills involved in the creation of the original paintings from which the copies are taken. In many cases the copy paper is the stronger of the two final year projects produced by the students, having a narrowly defined objective and a distinct terminal point in the physical copy. While this body of research has clearly augmented HKI’s contribution to the understanding of artistic practice over the last 40 years, it shares the conservation discipline’s weakness in the fragmentary dissemination of its findings. Unlike much formal academic study, with research outcomes explicitly intended for the public domain, conservation research frequently remains inaccessible outside the institution in which it was generated. In some cases, owner confidentiality has to be invoked, but more commonly it is difficult to identify an outlet for the small-scale, short-term bursts of research that are often generated in the course of the examination or treatment of paintings. HKI has overcome this shortcoming in some respects by encouraging its students to publish the results of their research in its own Bulletin and in 2012 took the opportunity to publish seven papers based on student reconstructions completed between 1988 and 2007 in the festschrift published in honour of Renate Woudhuysen-Keller, recognising Renate’s valued contribution to this facet of teaching at the Institute. However, much material useful to other researchers lies buried in these papers and the abstracts that follow are intended as a first step towards exhumation. A survey of the student project reveals one of the great strengths of HKI to be its connection with the Fitzwilliam Museum. The Museum allows its paintings to remain in the studios for the duration of the copy projects, giving students direct access to original paintings for examination, sampling and reconstruction. The Museum’s collection of Dutch flower paintings has proved particularly valuable in providing source material for research, as has its collection of paintings on copper. Since 1991, when the first copper panel was examined and copied, three further paintings on copper have been the subject of student projects, and the value of this build-up of expertise can be seen in Alison Stock’s report on a painting by Hendrick van Balen, which cites five previous third year reports in its bibliography. It is clear that students benefit and learn from other final year projects. While access to the Museum’s holdings obviously enhances the student’s opportunities for research, HKI’s own archival resources also play a part. The archive of the nineteenth-century artists’ colourman Charles Roberson, housed at HKI since 1976, is frequently consulted by students working on British paintings of the period, although it took 16 years before a nineteenth-century painting featured as the subject

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of a research project. It is anticipated that the recently donated Winsor & Newton archive, as well as the archives of paintings conservators and paint analysts that have been deposited at HKI in the past decade, will provide rich material for future student study. After 40 years HKI’s own records have themselves become historical resources for research, with Shan Kuang revisiting reports and re-polishing cross-sections taken in the 1980s to re-examine earlier findings on a painting by Jan Lievens, and Eleanor von Aderkas using her predecessors’ copy paintings as source material for her study of X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy. As a body of closely documented material, the copies are likely to provide further material for future projects, with their ageing characteristics being of particular interest. While the projects benefit from HKI’s strengths, they also suffer from some of its limitations. While any research project is an exercise in time management, the students can run out of time in which to complete their copies to the level intended, reflecting the sometimes conflicting demands of the combination of teaching, research and commercial activities envisaged for the Institute from its foundation. As with any scientific analysis, the availability of apparatus defines to some extent the potential for research. The increasing complexity, and cost, of modern analytical equipment has left the now under-capitalised scientific laboratory unable to make the most of the opportunities offered by modern instrumentation. The disparate nature of the projects means that research is rarely followed up from one project to another, the two papers on mould being the only exception to this. As most of the suggestions for further or follow-up research are neither taken further nor followed up, a different approach on HKI’s part might have allowed the projects to utilise the research group model, enabling one piece of work to build on the achievements of its predecessor. Whether conservation’s more pervasive questions could have been answered by a focused programme of student research can only remain speculation; however, the model adopted by the Department of Technology at the Courtauld Institute of Art suggests that there are considerable benefits to be derived from an approach that builds on research year-on-year, particularly in collaboration with other organisations. While the Courtauld’s students are able to follow up personal interests if they choose, their final year projects are also intended to complement the interests of the department’s staff, who often suggest subjects for research. Students regularly undertake analytical work at the laboratories of the Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed (RCE or Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands) in Amsterdam, building up a body of thematic research that often makes a contribution to research publications, bringing benefits to the institutions concerned, the wider field, and promoting the students’ professional development.

Projects in the next 40 years The next 40 years offer perhaps more varied resources and subjects for research than ever before, as increasing numbers of nineteenth- and twentieth-century paintings require conservation treatment, presenting opportunities for examination and research. The presence of the two great colourman’s archives at HKI, themselves rich reserves for research, will complement this opportunity with documentary resources. At the other end of the timescale, ongoing research projects on medieval rood screens will build on HKI’s expertise in this area and should offer the medieval-minded student a treasury for study. Looking outside the Institute, interdisciplinary research, capitalising on the recent interest in material culture expressed by other disciplines, offers the chance to collaborate with, and learn from, other fields. Closer to home, the studios will always generate practical questions, not least the perpetual varnish problem and the quest to find a substitute for the now-discontinued MS2A resin, linked closely to the technique of egg tempera retouching. The past decades of student research projects can themselves contribute to HKI’s output in years to come. If future students choose to read through to the final paragraphs of their predecessors’ work they will find many of them thwarted by lack of time, incomplete results, avenues unexplored, new thoughts that come too late, and old problems that do not go away. In their suggestions for different approaches and further research the graduates of the past are speaking to the students of the future, offering their ideas and advice for the next 40 years of final year projects at the Hamilton Kerr Institute. Abstracts of the Hamilton Kerr Institute’s final year student projects 1978–2015 1978 KEITH LAING Claude Lorrain, Apollo and Mercury (Wallace Collection) Detection of Overpaint 7 pp. text, 14 pp. illustrations Using stylistic comparisons and technical examination, this paper attempts to distinguish later from original paint in Claude Lorrain’s Apollo and Mercury (1660). Related works, some of them possibly preparatory drawings, are compared to the painting in order to identify changes in composition. This leads to the conclusion that alterations in the painting indicate the presence of a later hand. X-radiography and examination in ultraviolet fluorescence prove uninformative and only a single sample of paint can be taken, which is found to include natural ultramarine. Microscopic examination supports the suggestion that parts of the painting are by a different hand, although the author and date of these alterations cannot be ascertained. A suggestion is made that they date from the seventeenth century.

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KEITH LAING Examination of Maerten van Heemskerk’s The Four Last Things 14 pp. text, 14 pp. illustrations This paper presents the technical examination and treatment of a panel painting with a long history of flaking paint from Hampton Court Palace. Comparisons in composition are made with two sketches that are possibly studies for engraving. The treatment described includes cleaning, consolidation, removal of several campaigns of overpaint, filling and egg tempera retouching. Technical examination and analysis identifies the panel as oak with a chalk and glue ground. Underdrawing is identified, as well as a brighter white layer on top of the ground in areas of glazing to lend luminosity. A restricted palette of lead white, azurite, yellow ochre, vermilion and smalt is identified, with the probable addition of lead-tin yellow. Greens are found to be mixtures of blue and yellow. 1979 AMELIA JACKSON An Account of the Scientific Examination of Easel Paintings 85 pp. text, 8 pp. illustrations This paper briefly surveys the history of the scientific examination of easel paintings and assesses the information that can be derived relating to technique and condition. It continues by examining in some detail non-destructive techniques used to examine the paint layer: visible light, infrared, ultraviolet and X-radiation as well as micro-analytical techniques and both organic and inorganic analytical methods. This is followed by a short section devoted to methods used to analyse wooden and textile painting supports. The paper ends with eight pages of figures taken from published papers, including Herbert Lank’s ‘A vertically mounted X-ray installation’ from Studies in Conservation, 1978. AMELIA JACKSON Examination and Copy of a Florentine School, Fifteenth-Century Madonna and Child from the Fitzwilliam Museum 23 pp. text, no illustrations The examination and treatment reports for an anonymous painting from the Fitzwilliam Museum are included in this paper, which also discusses media analysis by staining and examination in infrared and ultraviolet, and X-radiography. The painting is in tempera on panel and includes many features typical of provincial Florentine art of the fifteenth century, closely following many of the techniques described in Cennini’s Il libro dell’arte. The paper ends with a short discussion of fourteenth- and fifteenth-century techniques, an analytical report on a Crucifixion from the Barber Institute and a detailed report on making a copy of the Madonna and Child.

1980 MARY ALLDEN A Copy of Studio of Joos van Cleve’s Adoration of the Magi 29 pp. text, no illustrations This account of making a copy of an early Flemish altarpiece describes both the scientific examination and treatment of the original, and the fabrication of the copy. The painting is first cleaned and consolidated before being sampled, examined under the microscope, X-radiographed, and examined in infrared. It is found to have been taken from a cartoon, with few changes between drawing and painting. Media analysis by staining suggests underlayers of egg medium with glazes largely of oil or resin. A copy is made of the entire painting, completing different areas to different levels in the layer structure, from preparation to upper surface. As some of the analytical results are inconclusive, the opportunity is taken to experiment with different combinations of media. As part of her investigation the author attempts to make copper resinate, although the results are insufficiently successful to be used on the finished copy. MARY ALLDEN The Theory and Practice of Flesh Painting from the Fourteenth to the Nineteenth Century. A Comparison of Contemporary Treatises with Actual Technique for Easel Painting 59 pp. text, 4 pp. illustrations Sources from the fourteenth to the nineteenth century are used to compare theory to practice, century by century. In addition, a number of general aspects of flesh painting are considered, including the initial sketch, the ‘Venetian Question’ whereby artists tried to identify the secrets of the Venetian School and in particular those of Titian, the depiction of complexion, and the order in which flesh painting came in the build-up of the paint layer. The paper concludes with remarks on what general characteristics emerge from the study, the results of media analysis of flesh paint using gas chromatography at the National Gallery, London, and illustrations of palettes set for flesh painting. SIMON FOLKES Examination and Copy of the Virgin and Child Attributed to the Studio of Perugino from the Fitzwilliam Museum 26 pp. text, 5 pp. illustrations This largely handwritten report describes the examination of a panel painting originating from the studio of Perugino. The painting is found to be on poplar in a walnut oil medium, possibly with some egg tempera. Cross-sections are drawn showing the layer structure and pigment identification and the results of chemical testing of paint samples are given. Finally, the examination report is included, giving a summary of the support, ground and paint

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layers, and surface coating. Although the title mentions a copy made of the painting, the text of the paper only records the examination and gives no details of the copying process. SIMON FOLKES Italian Painting Techniques of the Late Fifteenth Century and Early Sixteenth Centuries. An Examination of the Methods Revealed in Three Unfinished Paintings 37 pp. text, 3 pp. illustrations The Virgin and Child with St Andrew and St Peter by Cima da Conegliano (National Gallery of Scotland), The Lamentation for Christ by Giovanni Francesco Caroto (Christ Church College Gallery, Oxford), and The Holy Family attributed to Perino del Vaga (Courtauld Institute) are discussed separately. All three are unfinished paintings, giving access to the layer structure of each painting to some degree. The paper recognises that no general conclusions can be drawn from such a small sample of late fifteenth- to early sixteenth-century paintings, in part because no opportunity is offered to sample the paint and ground layers; however, the study offers detailed information on three paintings of varied style and technique through visual examination and comparison to other works. 1982 DANIEL FABIAN A Study of Panel Paintings from the Earliest Beginnings to 1640 55 pp. text, 24 pp. illustrations plus images embedded in the text This paper very briefly surveys information from treatises and guilds before discussing the different types of wood used for panel paintings. Properties, cuts and the current techniques of dendrochronological dating are discussed, followed by a chapter on the construction of panels and the history of panel making, which includes references to tools, joints and methods of fixing and repair. The project ends with a brief discussion of frames, preparation, size and thickness of panels, and a study of some of Rubens’ panels. A short bibliography is included. CAROLINE RICHARDS The Theory and Technique of Landscape Painting 63 pp. text, no illustrations The first section surveys the history of the theory and technique of landscape painting, concentrating on paintings dating from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century and discussing examples from a range of European schools. Theories of perspective are briefly touched upon and the practice of plein air painting is discussed. Excerpts relating to landscape painting from artists’ treatises are given, concentrating on material and technical practices, and sources, influences, copying and preparatory drawings are considered. While the second section

of the project is entitled ‘Notes to the Illustrations’, no illustrations are included. The final section is a discussion of pigments used for landscape painting that may cause problems for conservators owing to changes in appearance. Pigments discussed include smalt, organic yellows and copper resinate. 1983 SARA LEE An Investigation into the Contouring Properties of some Picture Varnishes 54 pp. text with illustrations This article examines six varnishes in order to assess whether there are differences between them in the way they follow the shape of the substrate to which they are applied. The varnishes under discussion are dammar, Ketone N, MS2A, Laropal K80, Paraloid B67 and Paraloid B72. A preliminary experiment asked eight conservators to rank these varnishes in order of preference in terms of their surface characteristics, all eight preferring dammar followed by MS2A. Varnish composition and typical recipes are recorded, followed by a discussion of the experimental methodology of the project and the measurement and photography of results. The results are discussed in terms of weight loss, viscosity and drying, and an appendix proposes the ideal properties looked for in a picture varnish. The paper concludes that the Paraloid resins both form the thinnest films and conform most closely to the substrate, with the caveat that further research is required. CARLYN E. QUINN A Copy of The Entombment by the Master of the Saint Ursula Legend from the Fitzwilliam Museum 27 pp. text, no illustrations A double-sided painting from the Fitzwilliam Museum attributed to the Master of the St Ursula Legend and dating from the end of the fifteenth century is subject to scientific examination prior to a copy being made as a student project. Analytical techniques comprise both photographic and microscopic examination, and sampling. As the exact nature of the presumed drying oil medium cannot be identified with certainty, the author takes the opportunity to experiment with both hot- and coldpressed linseed oil in her copy. The paper describes the preparation of the oak panel and the transfer of the underdrawing, and gives details of 18 crosssections used to reconstruct the layer structure in the copy. CARLYN E. QUINN Drapery Painting. Techniques Used in Italy and the Netherlands during the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Centuries 75 pp. text, 19 pp. illustrations Information from technical treatises relating to drapery painting is surveyed, looking at sources

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from both Italy and Northern Europe. This is followed by a discussion of drawing illustrated by a range of examples, both painted and sculptural. Underdrawing is discussed, with examples taken from The Entombment by the Master of the St Ursula Legend in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Jan van Eyck’s Ghent Altarpiece, and paintings by Jan van Scorel and Lucan van Leyden. The paint layer of two unfinished paintings is examined, Botticelli’s The Adoration of the Kings and Michaelangelo’s Madonna and Child, St John and Angels, both in the National Gallery, London, as well as paintings by Cima, Caroto, Girolamo da Treviso, Perugino, Titian, the Master of the Precious Blood and Lucas van Leyden. The paper concludes with a bibliography and excerpts from a treatise, identified earlier in the paper as taken from van Mander’s Het schilderboeck. 1984 RUPERT FEATHERSTONE An Enquiry into the Painting Methods and Materials of George Stubbs 2 volumes, 101 pp. text, 25 pp. illustrations Four paintings by Stubbs are discussed in detail: Eclipse (Jockey Club), Gimcrack (Fitzwilliam Museum), Reapers (National Trust, Upton House), and Hambletonian (National Trust, Mount Stewart). All four are subject to technical examination prior to treatment at the Hamilton Kerr Institute, and detailed cross-section drawings are included. Samples are also analysed at the National Gallery, London and further selected paintings by Stubbs are discussed more briefly for comparison. The paper concludes with a discussion of a number of commonly held beliefs concerning Stubbs’ painting practice and how they relate to the project’s findings showing, for example, that although it is thought that Stubbs’ work on enamels influenced the appearance of his easel paintings, he was already moving towards a thinner, smoother, more translucent technique when working on Gimcrack, four years before the production of his earliest enamel painting. ANNA SANDÉN Some Aspects of Blanching 21pp. text, 6 pp. illustrations A set of colour slides is noted in the foreword; otherwise the paper is illustrated with black and white scanning electron micrographs. The types and causes of blanching in paintings are discussed, taking examples from paintings in a number of collections. A particular phenomenon of surface blanching is identified in a group of paintings dating from c.1900, blanching resulting from changes in pigments is discussed, and the discoloration of smalt, other blue pigments and green pigments is reviewed. Blanching caused by medium change, solvent action, contact with water, and resulting from the mixture of oil and resin found in some British nineteenth-century paintings is also

recorded. The paper goes on briefly to discuss the options available for treatment before concluding that the complexity of the subject necessitates further research. 1985 KAREN H. ASHWORTH An Examination of the Frame of a Tabernacle Altarpiece by Paolo di Stefano 26 pp. text, 24 pp. illustrations The history of a tabernacle from the Fitzwilliam Museum by Paolo di Stefano is discussed and a detailed visual examination made, in part to determine the extent of the original structure and decoration. The painting was X-radiographed in order better to understand its construction and features of the decorative surfaces are recorded. The majority of the framing elements are found to be original, although much of the decorative surface has been lost, covered by overpaint and regilding, or altered as a result of ageing and intervention. However, the tabernacle remains a rare survival in retaining its original early fifteenth-century decorated frame. ELLA HENDRIKS Some Considerations of the Painting Technique of Sir Peter Lely with regard to Workshop Practice 54 pp. text, no illustrations A group of paintings by Lely from Kingston Lacy (National Trust) are examined, in part to bring out the differences in quality and technique between paintings attributed to Lely and those thought to be the work of studio assistants. Two autograph works, Lady Jenkinson c.1660 and Lady Cullen c.1665, are compared, looking at ground preparation and methods of drapery, hair and flesh painting. A studio work, Mrs Gilly, is also examined, finding that the studio hands appeared to follow Lely’s own practices very closely. This in part explains the difficulties in differentiating between ‘Lelys’ of higher and lower quality, outlined in the introduction. An appendix lists the nine paintings attributed to Lely or his studio at Kingston Lacy and gives the valuations proposed in a 1905 inventory, followed by a family tree to show the relationships between the sitters in the portraits. 1986 SALLY THIRKETTLE Luis Morales’ Madonna and Child. A Case Study on the Examination and Treatment 25 pp. text, 5 pp. illustrations Opening with an examination report on this panel painting from the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, the paper continues with a biographical introduction and a discussion of the condition of the painting. This is followed by a technical examination looking at the painting in ultraviolet, infrared and raking

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light, and taking an X-radiograph and 16 paint samples. The paper concludes with a discussion of the layer structure and some notes on the painting technique with reference to Francisco Pacheco’s El arte de la pintura. SALLY THIRKETTLE The Cleaning and Examination of Henry Prince of Wales on Horseback and Other Works by Robert Peake 174 pp. text, 27 pp. illustrations This is an extensive discussion of the cleaning and restoration of Henry Prince of Wales on Horseback, which revealed major iconographical changes to the final image. The project discusses the restoration, which involved removing widespread early overpaint to reveal an additional figure and a completely different background, and altered the attribution of the painting from Isaac Oliver to Robert Peake the Elder. The results of the scientific examination that justified the decision to make such a radical change to the painting are presented as an appendix. Two other paintings of the same sitter by Peake are considered for comparison, although not subject to the same level of investigation. The paper ends with an appendix containing technical and treatment reports and copies of contemporary documentary sources relevant to this work. SALLY THIRKETTLE Virgin and Child with St Anne attributed to Lancelot Blondeel. Examination of the Painting Technique and Report on Making a Copy of the Painting 55 pp. text, 4 pp. illustrations While attributed to Lancelot Blondeel, the report suggests that this may not be accurate, although no alternative artist is proposed. The original painting is cleaned and a scientific examination is undertaken, suggesting the use of an oil medium. The procedure for making the copy is described, with close reference to information in various treatises. A bibliography is provided and the examination report and list of paint samples is included in the appendix. 1987 SARAH MURRAY Examination of the Technique of Early SeventeenthCentury Dutch and Flemish Flower Paintings; their Conservation and Cleaning 194 pp. text, 48 pp. illustrations The paper opens with a discussion of the development of flower painting up to the seventeenth century and continues with a chapter setting out the biographies of the major early seventeenth-century flower painters in the Low Countries. This is followed by a technical section that discusses three paintings by Jan Brueghel, Balthasar van der Ast and Ambrosius Bosschaert II, and looks at sources of technical information and the information they

offer on the seventeenth-century’s approaches to preparation for painting and the use of pigments, media and varnishes. The paper concludes with a section on the scientific examination of the paintings under examination, giving numerous cross-section diagrams. The appendix contains the examination and treatment reports for the paintings. SARAH MURRAY Copy of A Basket of Flowers by Balthasar van der Ast 10 pp. text, 11 pp. illustrations This account draws on the author’s research project into the technique of early seventeenth-century Dutch and Flemish flower paintings above and records the practical experiment of translating the research findings into making a copy of one of the paintings examined in detail. After a short introduction to the period and a biography of the artist the paper records the steps undertaken to make the copy from panel preparation to selection of media. LARRY KEITH Mazzolino’s Christ Before Pilate, Examination, Treatment, Copy 14 pp. text, 7 pp. illustrations Opening with an examination report, the paper briefly records the conservation treatment of Mazzolino’s Christ Before Pilate from the Fitzwilliam Museum, before detailing the method of making a copy. This includes panel preparation, underdrawing and priming only. Thumbnails of slides are included and catalogue entries for a number of other paintings by Mazzolino are bound into the report. LARRY KEITH The Visitation of Maso da San Friano: Technique and Sources 58 pp. text, 35 pp. illustrations This is an account of the evolution, execution and technical art history of a large and complex sixteenth-century Italian panel painting. The paper looks at the painting’s background and sources and gives a biography of the artist. This is followed by a section on disegno and the evolution of the image, with a discussion of sketches, models and cartoons. The materials and technique of The Visitation are presented, illustrated by X-radiographs, infrared images and detailed photography. A final chapter discusses the technique of narrative, both in the painting under discussion and as employed by other painters of the period. 1988 NICOLA CHRISTIE The Hunt in the Forest by Paolo Uccello, Technical Examination and Copy 69 pp. text, 14 pp. illustrations A brief introduction to the painting and its artist is followed by a detailed technical examination.

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This includes an examination of the support with its underdrawing and incision lines, and a discussion of the medium and pigments used to paint The Hunt in the Forest. The paper discusses the aims and benefits for students in having the opportunity to make a copy, and a section is selected and prepared in accordance with the findings of the technical examination. The paper ends with the results of electron microprobe and microchemical analysis and a short bibliography. NICOLA CHRISTIE The Grounds of Paintings. A Comparative Survey of the Theory and Practice of Priming Supports from the Twelfth to the Mid-Eighteenth Centuries 130 pp. text, 2 pp. illustrations This extensive report looks at the historical development of grounds on paintings on both wooden and canvas supports, studying their geographical distribution and development in terms of changes in colour, texture and structure. It then goes on to examine the materials used for ground layers and in two contrasting chapters considers the theory of priming supports, followed by the practice. These chapters are illustrated by cross-sections from paintings and recipes from technical sources. The paper concludes with a discussion of the evidence presented, a bibliography and an appendix that

places the treatises consulted in chronological order and tabulates the information provided by paintings examined in the course of the project. KATE RUSSELL A Study into the Materials and Equipment of Artists’ Studios using Documentary Evidence 2 volumes: vol. 1, 131 pp. text, 48 pp. illustrations; vol. 2, 239 pp. text, 62 pp. illustrations This is the largest of the final year projects and is extensively illustrated with images of artists’ studios. The first volume looks at documentary sources and what information they offer on brushes, canvases, drawing equipment, easels, grinding equipment, lighting, mahlsticks, models and mannequins, palettes and storage. The paper concludes with a discussion of changes in artists’ studios over time and what this suggests about the status and social standing of the artist. The second volume contains an appendix illustrated with over 50 images of artists in their studios with a discussion of each image, extracting any technical information afforded by the image. The paper ends with a substantial list of images of artists’ studios and a bibliography. 1989 AELLA DIAMANTOPOULOS Attempts at the Reconstruction of Picture Varnishes according to Recipes from the Twelfth to the Eighteenth Century 127 pp. text, no illustrations The materials used in varnishes in the period under discussion are briefly set out, followed by a discussion of the different types of varnishes used. Treatises are consulted and recipes selected in order to reconstruct the following types of varnish: egg white, spirit, essential oil, mineral oil and oil varnishes. The sources, ingredients and both original and reconstructed methods are given, as well as a summary of appearance and drying time. The paper concludes by looking at the effectiveness of the documentary records as a source for the reconstruction of recipes and the practical difficulties encountered in making up the historical varnishes.

Figure 1. Aella Diamantopoulos’ reconstruction of The Entry of Christ into Jerusalem. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

AELLA DIAMANTOPOULOS The Entry of Christ into Jerusalem, Copy of a Greek Icon of the Late Sixteenth Century 38 pp. text, 7 pp. illustrations (figure 1) The paper describes making a copy of a late sixteenth-century Greek icon, the first painting of this type to be copied at the Hamilton Kerr Institute. After describing the icon, a technical examination follows, looking at the support and its preparation, incision lines, gilding, paint, lettering, and evidence for a lost metal revetment. The author has difficulty in sourcing the original’s juniper wood and opts instead for cedar of Lebanon. The progress of the copy is recorded, based on the information

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derived from the original painting and documentary sources, and a bibliography is provided. ROSANNA EADIE Observations on the Deterioration of Blue and Green Paint Layers in Dutch Seventeenth-Century Painting 55 pp. text, 9 pp. illustrations The longstanding recognition of the tendency of blue and green paint used in Dutch seventeenthcentury painting to alter in colour is discussed. The paper characterises these changes by looking at material from treatises relating to these colours, discussing both preparation and application. It goes on to study methods used to clean paintings from the seventeenth to the nineteenth century. A survey of contemporary literature follows, together with case studies resulting from the examination of five paintings in the Fitzwilliam Museum by Gerrit Dou, Samuel van Hoogstraten, Jan Steen and Willem van Mieris. The paper concludes that the vulnerability of glazes to cleaning, adulteration and environmental deterioration are factors in their colour change. ROSANNA EADIE A Copy of Gerrit Dou’s Woman at a Window 30 pp. text, 6 pp. illustrations Gerrit Dou’s Woman at a Window is one of the paintings examined in the author’s project on the deterioration of blue and green paint layers in Dutch seventeenth-century paintings. This paper looks at the technique of the school of Fine Painters in the Netherlands and discusses Gerrit Dou’s life and the subject matter of the painting. The original painting is examined and the cleaning documented before an account of the method of execution of both the original painting and the copy are presented, stage by stage. Cross-sections and a bibliography complete the project. 1990 KATHERINE ARA An Investigation of Late Eighteenth-Century and Early Nineteenth-Century Thixotropic Media: Megilps and Gumptions. Based on the Investigations Carried out by Leslie Carlyle from Documentary Sources 25 pp. text, no illustrations This paper takes an element from Dr Leslie Carlyle’s doctoral research, subsequently published as The Artist’s Assistant, to investigate thixotropic media through practical experiments based on documentary evidence. After a discussion of the nature and measurement of viscosity, megilps and gumtions are discussed as paint media, looking at the preparation of the drying oils and varnishes used in their composition. Selected recipes are discussed and the results of making them up presented. The paper concludes with proposals for further research and a bibliography.

KATHERINE ARA A Copy of a Later Fifteenth-Century or Early SixteenthCentury Flemish Painting Adoration of the Magi 47 pp. text, 3 pp. illustrations This paper introduces and describes the painting to be copied and sets out the stages of composition of the copy in reference to the materials and technique of the original, from panel to paint layers. The paper ends with a dendrochronological investigation of the original panel, which was unable to provide an accurate felling date for the timber used, and a brief discussion of the limitations of this analytical technique. Thumbnails are given of the slides, which are not bound with the project. 1991 MICHAEL GALLAGHER The Roberson Archive: Inventory of Written and Printed Material and Case Study on the Accounts of Ford Madox Brown 2 copies, second copy with pamphlet on Ford Madox Brown’s mural paintings at Manchester Town Hall: 55 pp. text; no illustrations This paper recognises the need for the archive of the artists’ colourman Charles Roberson to be catalogued. The author accepts that while a full catalogue is beyond the scope of his project, an inventory, summarising how the main categories of documentary material relate to one another, is of use, using the purchases of Ford Madox Brown as a case study. The paper gives a brief history of the firm and the arrival of its archive at the Hamilton Kerr Institute, followed by an inventory of its contents. Ford Madox Brown’s account is then briefly surveyed and an appendix provides selected letters and a recipe, followed by proposals for the archive’s conservation. MICHAEL GALLAGHER The Construction of a Copy of The Emperor Charles V, a Panel Attributed to the Master of the Magdalene Legend 2 copies: 33 pp. text, 12 pp. illustrations The identity of the Master of the Magdalene Legend is discussed and the original painting’s appearance is described. The structure of the painting is examined in conjunction with a description of the construction of its copy. Making the copy clarifies the extent to which the original painting has changed. The paper ends with a bibliography and an appendix containing black and white illustrations of paintings discussed in the text. Thumbnails of colour slides are provided. MARIKA SPRING A Copy of the Painting Pan and Syrinx in a Classical Landscape by Anton Ryckaert, from the Fitzwilliam Museum 2 copies: 67 pp. text, 9 pp. illustrations This paper records the first attempt by a Hamilton Kerr Institute student to copy a painting on a copper

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support. The background of both the painting itself and the use of copper as a support for paintings is discussed. The method of manufacture of copper plate in the seventeenth century is described, drawing on documentary sources, and this information is used to suggest the method of manufacture for the copper panel under examination. The paper goes on to discuss the preparation of the support, the underdrawing, and the paint layers, describing the preparation of the copy in tandem with a discussion of the original. It concludes with the practical findings that emerge from making the copy, a bibliography, and an appendix giving details of both the examination and treatment of the original painting. MARIKA SPRING A Study of Staining Techniques for the Identification of Proteinaceous Paint Media 72 pp. text, no illustrations The author sets out to present ways in which the reliability of methods of staining paint samples in order to identify proteinaceous paint media can be achieved. After a discussion of the properties, ageing and drying of proteins in general, the paper describes animal and fish glue collagen, egg proteins, casein, oils and polysaccharides. The advantages and limitations of techniques other than staining are discussed, including instrumental techniques, followed by a description of visible and fluorescent stains. Sample preparation and factors that can reduce the accuracy of results are explained, together with the preparation of a set of reference samples and the results of staining. The appendix contains technical information on the stains surveyed. 1992 HÉLÈNE DUBOIS A Copy and Reconstruction of the Technique of W.P. Frith’s Othello and Desdemona 22 pp. text, 15 pp. illustrations This is the first nineteenth-century painting to feature as the subject of a student project. The author makes use of Frith’s account with his colourman Charles Roberson, preserved in the Roberson Archive at the Hamilton Kerr Institute, in order to reconstruct Frith’s palette. The structure of the original painting is then discussed, followed by a description of the fabrication of the copy through all stages. The paper concludes that while documentary sources are useful in explaining the painting’s current appearance, the limitations of the analytical methods used leave a number of unanswered questions.

both contemporaries and the artists who followed, prompt a reconsideration of the primary sources associated with the artist’s technique. The paper discusses the context in which Reynolds worked in mid-eighteenth-century London and follows the progression of his career, emphasising the development of his technique. A final chapter links documentary evidence to the results of examination of his paintings, concentrating in particular on his use of wax and gelled media. The appendix gives the primary sources in detail but is missing the sections on letters, Reynolds’ literary works, and secondary sources listed on the contents page. Examination of the paintings discussed in the text and a bibliography are provided in a further appendix. MINAKO OTA Reconstruction of Two Panel Paintings by Adrian Isenbrandt 46 pp. text, 3 pp. illustrations This paper records the examination, treatment and copying of two small panel paintings attributed to Adrian Isenbrandt, an artist active in the first half of the sixteenth century. While it seems surprising that the two paintings appear to have used different techniques for the underdrawing, this is found elsewhere in a triptych by the artist. The paper proposes that Isenbrandt used a glue/oil emulsion in some parts of the painting and a number of experiments to replicate this effect are described. The paper concludes with an appendix containing examination and treatment reports. MINAKO OTA Regeneration of Aged Glue in Glue Lining 56 pp. text, no illustrations The intention of this project is to ascertain whether aged glue paste used in a lining can be regenerated through humidification in order to allow it to regain some of its adhesive properties. The paper discusses the properties of glue and then sets out the experimental apparatus and method. Various tests are undertaken, some using pieces of an old lining canvas likely to date from 1757. The report concludes that regeneration by humidification is not possible as although the glue swells, it does not become sticky, and the swelling is only a temporary reaction that does not cause a change in the structure of the glue. However, with a younger sample of glue paste there may be a better chance of regeneration. The paper’s appendix records peel tests on lined painting mock-ups. 1993

HÉLÈNE DUBOIS Aspects of Sir Joshua Reynolds’ Painting Technique. A Study of the Primary Sources with Reference to the Examination of Paintings 79 pp. text, 18 pp. illustrations The well-known deficiencies of Reynolds’ painting technique, as well as the influence he exerted on

SPIKE BUCKLOW The Cleaning and Copying of Still-Life with Fruit and Flowers by Jan van Os 31 pp. text, 16 pp. illustrations The paper opens with a biography of the artist and a description of the genre of flower painting, its history

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and symbolism. The painting under investigation is described in the context of the five paintings by the artist in the Fitzwilliam Museum acquired as part of the Broughton Collection. A technical examination of the painting follows, with medium analysis returning results for poppy oil. The treatment of the painting is described, followed by an account of the manufacture of the copy. The copy largely relies on close observation of the original painting in the absence of written sources on the techniques of eighteenth-century Dutch artists and the unavailability of paint samples. The paper concludes that while the painting has faded it remains a coherent and balanced image. SPIKE BUCKLOW An Investigation into the Effect of Some Surface Characteristics upon the Perception of Pictorial Space in Easel Paintings 99 pp. text, 16 pp. illustrations This is the first student project that moves away from painters’ materials and techniques, and the materials and practices of conservators, to address issues of perception relating to some surface aspects of easel paintings. The paper opens with a discussion of perception and relates this to the reading of paintings. This is followed by an experimental section, looking at craquelure and losses to the paint surface in particular. A technical appendix follows, examining a range of phenomena from yellowed varnish to incomplete objects, assessing how they affect perception. The paper concludes with a bibliography and provision of experimental material. ANNABEL ROBINSON The Monitoring and Analysis of the Climate within the Church of St Mary, Thornham Parva, Suffolk 14 pp. text, 22 pp. illustrations The restoration of the Thornham Parva Retable, a fourteenth-century English panel painting, is one of the Hamilton Kerr Institute’s major projects in terms of both research and treatment. This paper documents the aims and results of climate control and monitoring undertaken in the church of St Mary, Thornham Parva, prior to the retable’s removal for treatment. Monitoring reveals that there are the expected seasonal fluctuations in temperature and relative humidity, and those resulting from heating for services in the church, but overall the internal environment is relatively stable. The paper discusses the various options considered to improve the environment and the results of an experiment in local heating.

with a biographical essay on Benham Hay. The iconography of The Florentine Procession is deciphered and the painting’s provenance documented. The remainder of the project describes the construction of a copy made of a section of the painting, based on observation and cross-section analysis. The paper concludes with an assessment of the limitations of the copy and the difficulties encountered in its execution. 1994 CLAIRE CHORLEY An Investigation into Current Techniques for StripLining, Comparing Canvas and Polyester, Two Commonly Used Materials 38 pp. text, no illustrations The advantages of strip-lining a painting are presented, as well as the potential problems this treatment poses. The materials used for this procedure are considered, looking at linen, cotton and various polyesters, as well as synthetic adhesives and interleaves. The impact of environmental factors on the success of the treatment is discussed. The experimental intentions and methods are set out, describing the design of a humidity chamber used to test the efficacy of canvas and polyester strip-linings. In order to replicate a brittle, aged paint film a variety of coatings is devised in an attempt to produce cracks. The paper concludes that while the experiments are a useful starting point, further research is required. CLAIRE CHORLEY The Adoration of the Magi, Flemish School, c.1500. An Investigation and Copy of a Flemish Panel from the Collection of the Fitzwilliam Museum 21 pp. text, 7 pp. illustrations This paper relates to an earlier project on the same painting by Katherine Ara, which had included scientific investigation and dendrochronological analysis. The present paper intends to enlarge on this through the construction of a copy, in particular concentrating on the build-up of the ground and paint layers. The construction of the copy is described from the cut of the panel to the paint layers. The paper includes a discussion of the correspondence of The Adoration of the Magi to a version in the Gemäldegalerie in Berlin and the relationship between these paintings and various works by Rogier van der Weyden and Robert Campin. It concludes with a bibliography and an appendix that outlines some methods of making transparent paper and the transfer of underdrawing. 1995

ANNABEL ROBINSON The Construction of a Copy of a NineteenthCentury Canvas Painting The Florentine Procession by Jane Eleanor Benham Hay 52 pp. text, 14 pp. illustrations This is the first project to consider a painting by a female artist. It opens with a discussion of the working conditions of the Victorian woman artist and continues

PIPPA BALCH Bartolome Esteban Murillo’s Madonna and the Rosary: The Artist’s Technique and Construction of a Copy 30 pp. text, 4 pp. illustrations The paper opens with a biography of Murillo and assesses his popularity and influence in England.

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While undergoing conservation treatment, the painting’s materials and techniques are studied and a section of the painting copied. The construction of the copy is constrained by the time required for the treatment of the painting before its return to Dulwich Picture Gallery to be exhibited. Technical examination of the support after the lining canvas was removed reveals a twill damask fabric with an unusual undulating checked pattern. Similar canvases are recorded on other works by the artist. The texture of the canvas is largely obscured by a thick ground layer, suggesting that the pattern was not intended to influence the final appearance of the painting. The paper establishes the layer structure of the painting, presenting cross-section analysis, and briefly describes the progress of the partial copy. JO LYNN Two Thirteenth-Century Panels from the Painted Chamber, Westminster Palace, a Discussion of Materials and Techniques 73 pp. text, slide illustrations only The paper documents the background and technique of two panels from the now destroyed ceiling of the thirteenth-century Painted Chamber of Westminster Palace. The panels were only discovered and identified in the 1990s. They are important both for their early date and because they are the only paintings from the chamber that survived the nineteenthcentury fire and subsequent alterations. The paper looks at records preserved at Westminster as well as contemporary treatises in order to supplement the findings of analysis. The materials and techniques used in the panels are described, in particular relief decoration, and the author concludes that the relatively simple technique is consistent with that known to have been used elsewhere in medieval Europe. The similarities in style between the panels and miniature painting are noted and the Westminster panels are identified as the earliest surviving panel paintings from England to use oil as the dominant medium.

NICOLA PAUSE A Study into the Method of Retouching with Egg Tempera 48 pp. text, 1 p. illustrations This project is a consideration of egg tempera retouching, the most common retouching medium to be used at the Hamilton Kerr Institute. The first section describes the concept and method as practised at the Institute based, in part, on the responses to a questionnaire circulated to its conservators. The use of burnishing and MS2A as a supplementary material are considered. The second section is experimental, preparing and testing samples of the retouching medium in order to assess its ageing, colour, saturation and gloss. The appendix includes a copy of the brief questionnaire used in the research, a summary of data relating to the materials relevant to the project, a list of materials and recipes used in the tests, cross-sections taken from the test panels, and colour and gloss measurements. Thumbnails of colour slides are included. NICOLA PAUSE Technical Examination and Execution of a Copy of The Grand Canal North of the Rialto Bridge by Michele Marieschi (1710–1743/4) 43 pp. text, 7 pp. illustrations A discussion of topographical painting in eighteenthcentury Venice opens this paper, looking at issues of perspective and the use of the camera ottica, followed by biographical notes on Michele Marieschi. The absence of contemporary Italian technical literature is noted. The technical examination of the painting is then described, examining all stages of the composition, followed by the execution of a copy of a section of the painting. Interesting findings include Marieschi’s continued use of realgar, more usually superseded by Naples yellow at this date, and the discovery of small dots used in the construction of the perspective lines. 1997

JO LYNN The Judgement of Zaleucus, 1606, by Ambrosius Francken, Technical Examination and the Making of a Copy 23 pp. text, no illustrations Cleaning and restoration of this painting reveals a monogram and date, confirming a recent attribution to Ambrosius Francken the Elder. The painting appears to be the only work in a British collection firmly attributed to this artist. It therefore opens with a discussion of this relatively little-known artist, including a family tree of the Francken family of painters. The iconography of the painting is explained and the style discussed. The painting’s multiple attributions since 1916 are listed, from Salomon de Bray to J. Sanders van Hemerson, to B. Spranger, to Carel van Mander, and then finally to Ambrosius Francken. The paper ends with a technical examination of the painting and a description of the construction of a copy.

ALISON SMITH The Aesthetics and Handling Properties of Three Low Molecular Weight Varnishes, With and Without the Addition of Plasticisers 56 pp. text, 4 pp. illustrations After a discussion of the properties of an ideal picture varnish the paper lists the properties of the four resins tested: dammar, MS2A, Arkon P90 and Laropal A81. The use of plasticisers is discussed with particular reference to Kraton rubbers. The properties of varnish films are described in terms of gloss and saturation, molecular weight, stability, removability, brittleness and application. A section on the test procedures of the project follows. The preparation of the test panels and varnish samples is described, as is the application of these varnishes, with and without plasticisers. Four test paintings are also used to assess the varnish samples and conservators are invited to comment on

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them in order of gloss, saturation and preference. This results in Arkon P90 being preferred in two cases, dammar in one, and one set of inconclusive results. A list of the suppliers of the materials used is included. ALISON SMITH The Battle of the Spurs, a Technical Examination and Construction of a Copy 33 pp. text, 24 pp. illustrations The restoration of this early Tudor painting, damaged after the fire at Hampton Court Palace in 1983, presents an opportunity for technical examination. The findings inform the construction of a copy of a section of the painting. The original painting in its present condition is described and the context of court painting in the mid-sixteenth century is discussed. A detailed technical examination is presented, from the canvas ticking support to the paint layers, with the preparation of the copy described in tandem with the description of the original, section by section. A detailed section on underdrawing reveals details visible in infrared reflectography, and images are provided of the underdrawing executed on the copy. Although no definite attribution of the painting to any artist is suggested, the identification of Flemish and Italian influences in the style and choice of materials may suggest that the painting is by a foreign artist working at the court of Henry VIII. 1999 REBECCA KENCH An Investigation into the Performance of Four Different Microclimate Boxes 32 pp. text, 9 pp. illustrations In order to avoid the intrusion of a microclimate box surrounding both painting and frame, this project constructs boxes by building up the frame, ensuring that the materials from which they are made are inexpensive and accessible. The paper discusses the need for such boxes and describes their construction. Variables such as covering the box with foil, coating it with wax, and buffering it with silica gel are considered. Setting up and maintaining microclimate boxes is described and then a series of tests is undertaken in order to assess their effectiveness in controlling the internal environment. The results show the effectiveness of all the boxes tested in reducing the effects of dramatic changes in the external environment, slowing down reactions inside to days rather than hours of time, but no one construction method proved especially effective and further research is required. REBECCA KENCH A Detailed Examination and Copy of Alfred Stevens’ La Liseuse 34 pp. text, 12 pp. illustrations This project is unusual in that the painting to be copied did not require conservation treatment, limiting the technical investigation to non-destructive

examination. The paper discusses the Belgian artist’s background, clarifying potential confusion with the British artist of the same name, and the artistic context in late-nineteenth-century Paris where he worked. Other paintings of similar subjects by Stevens are described, followed by an examination of the paint layer prior to copying. The execution of the copy is set out with reference to the findings of the technical examination. This is the first project in which images are provided of the progression of the copy, and the finished copy is presented alongside the original, enabling the reader to assess the success of the procedure. LORRAINE MAULE Stretchers: Canvas as a Painting Support. Historical Review of the Development of Auxiliary Supports and Stretching Methods 58 pp. text, 124 pp. illustrations (including photocopies from colourmen’s catalogues and patent abridgements) The project is work-in-progress in preparation for a survey of stretchers in Tate’s archives. Rather than presenting a discursive paper, the project consists of 13 appendices presenting a chronological survey of stretchers, strainers and stretching methods. This includes both documentary and material evidence plus historical descriptions and illustrations taken from images, treatises and primary literary sources. The project collates a wide variety and large volume of information although no general conclusions on stretcher design or use are presented. LORRAINE MAULE The Gadarene Swine by Paul Bril 84 pp. text, 55 pp. illustrations This paper describes the technical examination of a painting on copper by Paul Bril. A biography and a discussion of the painting’s subject matter are followed by a general discussion of paintings on copper supports and the methods of manufacture and production of copper plates. Bril’s place in the tradition of painting on copper is presented, as well as his collaborations with other artists in the production of paintings. A detailed examination of the painting is presented and other versions are discussed. The paper concludes with a condition and treatment report followed by a report on the X-radiograph of the copper plate. A further appendix presents experiments in planishing and the experimental use of X-radiographs to detect differences in metal thickness. LORRAINE MAULE The Thornham Parva Retable: Reconstruction of the Portion Containing the Figure of St Paul 29 pp. text, 31 pp. illustrations A section from the Thornham Parva Retable, a fourteenth-century English panel painting, is reconstructed. The area chosen is selected as representing almost all the materials and techniques employed in

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the production of the painting. In addition to painting, the project presents the gilding and tin relief that is a particular feature of the retable. The materials and techniques of the painting are presented in conjunction with the reconstruction, illustrating the various processes involved in fabricating the copy and showing the gradual build-up of layers of decoration, as well as a reconstruction of the upper paint layers. The paper ends with a bibliography. 2002 ADELAIDE IZAT The Aesthetics, Adulteration and Application of Asphalt in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries 75pp. text, 26 pp. illustrations The paper presents the development and use of bituminous materials and utilises material in artists’ treatises and the Roberson Archive in order to assess the use of asphalt as a painting material. This is followed by a section describing the reconstructions of asphalt recipes in order better to understand the qualities, possible adulteration and ageing characteristics of this material. A discussion of the methodology and observed results follows and the paper concludes with suggestions for further research. A bibliography of treatises relating to the subject is given together with a general bibliography, and the appendices include material from the Roberson Archive, recipes used, and a discussion of the outcome of following these recipes. A section clarifying the differences between the various types of bituminous materials is provided as well as a list of suppliers of materials used for the project. ADELAIDE IZAT A Copy of St Dominic Receiving the Rosary from the Virgin Mary, a Seventeenth-Century Roman School Painting 51 pp. text, 42 pp. illustrations This is the third painting on copper examined in a student project, although it is found to be atypical of paintings on this type of support, failing to take advantage of copper’s smoothness and colour, the characteristics for which copper panels are usually selected. It is suggested that the work may have been painted at speed, albeit by a skilled artist working with high-quality materials. The paper describes the technique of both the original and the copy, and the progress of different stages of execution of the copy is illustrated. A useful list of treatises relating to the painting is provided in the appendix, as well as a more general bibliography. 2001 META CHAVANNES ‘One Hundred Years of Blues’: An Investigation into Possible Causes of Deterioration of the Virgin’s Robes in Italian Easel Paintings, c.1450–1550 46 pp. text, 7 pp. illustrations

This is an example of a research project that resulted from the process of making a copy of a painting, Domenico Ghirlandaio’s Nativity, in which the Virgin’s blue robe is noticeably abraded in comparison to other areas of the painting. The paper is deliberately limited in scope, looking at four potential causes of deterioration: the interaction between blue paint and undermodelling, instability as a result of the coarseness of pigment particles, the choice of medium, and human intervention. A broad range of technical sources is consulted before test panels are prepared to try to assess different media, pigments and the application of paint in order to address issues not resolved by consultation of the technical literature. The paper concludes that all four factors considered in the project are likely to be responsible for the present state of blue robes in paintings of this period, and that further research into media, pigment particle size, pigment to medium ratio, layer structure, and the differing characteristics of azurite and ultramarine should be assessed for their effect on the deterioration of blue paint layers. META CHAVANNES A Reconstruction of Domenico Ghirlandaio’s Nativity, c.1480s 36 pp. text, 17 pp. illustrations Following The Nativity’s reattribution to Domenico Ghirlandaio, facilitated by the painting’s cleaning, a copy is made, in part to ascertain the extent to which the Virgin’s blue robe has been overpainted. The project aims to reconstruct the original appearance of the painting rather than its present damaged condition. After examination of both the painting and cross-section samples taken from it, the fabrication of the copy is described, attempting to reconstruct the original intensity of the paint layers’ colours. The results of the examination suggest that the artist’s materials and techniques were similar to those found in other paintings by Domenico and David Ghirlandaio, and support the reattribution to Domenico Ghirlandaio and his workshop. 2003 LARA WILSON The Examination of the Portraits in the Library of Anglesey Abbey 135 pp. text, 28 pp. illustrations This project was undertaken at the suggestion of the National Trust to examine a group of 14 largely sixteenth-century portraits in the library at Anglesey Abbey, a historic house local to the Institute. These paintings were collected in the twentieth century by Lord Fairhaven, the former owner of the house. The issue of attribution and provenance is of particular interest to the National Trust and this is incorporated into the technical examination of these works. The paper opens by establishing the historical background to portraiture of the period and looks at the mass production of paintings in

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sixteenth-century England. Materials, techniques and the use of face patterns are discussed in general terms and then a detailed report on each painting follows, presenting closely examined technical information and discussing related paintings, dates and attributions. The project generates a wealth of data, which is tabulated in the hope that this small sample of paintings might contribute to a larger study at a future date LARA WILSON The Examination, Reconstruction and Treatment of Juan and Diego Sánchez: The Road to Calvary 114 pp. text, 15 pp. illustrations This project illustrates in detail the many stages necessary for the fabrication of this complex copy, from forging the nails used to make the panel to pastiglia, gilding, punching and painting. The paper looks at the attribution and provenance of the painting and puts it into the context of workshop practices in Seville and southern Spain, and the materials and techniques of late fifteenth- and early sixteenthcentury painting in Seville. The painting and its copy are described in detail, using technical examination to shed light on the original structure and function. When the twentieth-century frame in which it is currently displayed is disregarded it is suggested that the painting once formed the central panel of a relatively small retable. The paper concludes with an account of the conservation treatment of the painting. HAYLEY WOODHOUSE Investigation of a Range of Potential Fungistats and Fungicides for Use on Easel Paintings with Particular Reference to the Environmental Problems at Anglesey Abbey, Cambridgeshire 96 pp. text, 9 pp. illustrations The longstanding problem of mould growth at Anglesey Abbey, one of the National Trust’s properties in Cambridgeshire, prompted the research for this paper. An extensive literature review considers the conditions in which mould grows, the interaction between mould and paintings, and the ways in which mould is usually treated, both for prevention and removal. The paper outlines conditions at Anglesey Abbey and describes a series of experiments to encourage mould to grow on canvas samples in order to test a range of mould inhibitors and fungicides. The paper recognises that while environmental control in order to eliminate the conditions in which microbiological growth can occur is the most effective approach, this is often impracticable, particularly in a historic house. While treatment with a fungicide is therefore often required, results suggest that industrial methylated spirits, while effective, is only a short-term solution, but that the materials tested that have greater longevity are also unacceptably toxic. The paper suggests that less aggressive materials with fungistatic properties warrant further investigation.

HAYLEY WOODHOUSE Examination and Comparison of Early and Late Golden Age Dutch Flower Pieces: Ambrosius Bosschaert the Younger’s Flowerpiece with Monkey (c.1635) and Jan van Huysum’s Vase of Flowers (c.1710–20), with an Account of the Reconstruction of Jan van Huysum’s Vase of Flowers 41 pp. text, 18 pp. illustrations This project again draws on the strength of the Fitzwilliam Museum’s collection of Dutch flower paintings, examining two paintings approximately 70–80 years apart in date in order to assess the development of the genre over the period. A discussion of the changing aspirations of Dutch flower painters from botany to illusionism is followed by a detailed technical investigation of the two paintings, both of which are on a canvas support, an unusual choice for Bosschaert. The condition and conservation history of the two paintings is discussed briefly before the reconstruction of the van Huysum is described. The paper concludes that in their quest for the illusion of reality, later Dutch flower painters employed a number of techniques to create three-dimensional depth and that van Huysum’s work is a comprehensive exemplar, bringing many of these practices to perfection. 2005 CLARE HEARD Paintings, Potatoes and Potash: An Examination of Traditional Recommendations for the Cleaning of Paintings before 1850 27 pp. text, no illustrations This project surveys the extant literature on the cleaning of paintings before 1850, looking at the dissemination of advice. There is a particular focus on recipes, their origins, intentions and dissemination. Texts ranging in date from the tenth to the nineteenth century are discussed, and a number of general trends are identified, tracing the historical documentation from a predominantly Italian and German focus in the medieval period to a prevalence of English and then French authorship in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, culminating in a more multinational approach in the nineteenth century. There is also a change from a concentration on simply giving recipes in the texts to a recognition of the importance of procedure, with its accompanying caveats and qualifications. The materials used in the recipes are identified as generally being sourced from the kitchen – wine, beer, bread, eggs, potatoes, etc., and they are tabulated, by recipe and date, at the end of the project as a finding list, but without any transcription. CLARE HEARD The Technical Reconstruction of a ThirteenthCentury Medieval English Altarpiece: The Westminster Abbey Retable 32 pp. text, 26 pp. illustrations The second great English retable to be treated at the Hamilton Kerr Institute inspired a wealth of

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growth and a ventilation system might be preferable as a low-cost option, although one that runs the risk of encouraging salt efflorescence in the building’s walls. The paper ends with another paragraph of suggestions for future research, yet to be addressed in subsequent student projects.

Figure 2. Tabitha Teuma’s reconstruction of Federico Zuccaro’s The Calumny of Apelles. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

research, including this project, which later contributed to a paper in the monograph on the painting. The project gives an overview of the structure and techniques of the retable before discussing the reconstruction of a section of the painting. As the entire 11-ft-wide panel could not be copied, the paper explains the rationale behind the choice of the area selected for reconstruction. The panel was prepared using tools that, where possible, were similar to those used in the thirteenth century, and the three-dimensional decoration was carved before metal elements were applied and imitation enamels and gems fabricated and attached. The illustrations demonstrate the complexity of this reconstruction and the high level of craftsmanship involved in the construction of both the original and copy. TABITHA TEUMA Measures in Preventing Mould Growth on Canvas 46 pp. text, 24 pp. illustrations This project directly follows up Hayley Woodhouse’s work on microbiological growth at Anglesey Abbey two years earlier, taking up the suggestion for further research, largely prompted by the National Trust’s ongoing need to solve the mould problems at its property. The present project undertakes an environmental survey of Anglesey Abbey and explores the practical application of the earlier project’s results, in particular the suggestion that fungistats merit further investigation. The potential for improved air movement is also investigated. The paper’s conclusions establish that neither of the fungistats tested were effective in preventing mould

TABITHA TEUMA The Examination, Reconstruction and Treatment of The Calumny of Apelles by Federico Zuccaro 44 pp. text, 28 pp. illustrations (figure 2) This sixteenth-century painting on canvas comes from Hampton Court Palace and is first recorded in England in the nineteenth century. The paper presents Zuccaro’s theories on art, the literary sources for the subject matter and the iconography of the painting, before the technical examination of the painting is presented and a reconstruction of one section described. Infrared analysis suggests that, with its changes in design at both the drawing and painting stages, this painting precedes a larger version in the Palazzo Caetani in Rome. Analysis also shows that Zuccaro used a number of unusual pigments in the painting. The construction of the copy is clearly illustrated, as is the condition of the original prior to, and during, conservation treatment. 2007 JESSICA DAVID Examination and Treatment of Six Reverse Paintings on Glass from William Nicholson’s Loggia with Figures and Architectural Fragment 2 copies: 47 pp. text, 28 pp. illustrations William Nicholson’s 1913 reverse glass murals present a range of conservation problems including paint delamination, loss, water damage, mould growth, chipped or fractured corners and scratches. The issue of safe interim storage and eventual installation is also considered in the paper. The paper examines six of 42 panels in order to offer solutions for their treatment and devises a system to consolidate delaminating paint, in part using an ultrasonic mister, that achieves acceptable results in terms of effectiveness and visual impact. A section on the paintings’ future care is planned but not included in the paper, although the design of a modified tray for safe storage is appended after a bibliography that highlights how little has been published on reverse glass paintings. JESSICA DAVID Investigation and Reconstruction of a SeventeenthCentury Pronk Still-Life: The Yarmouth Collection 53 pp. text, 51 pp. illustrations The Yarmouth Collection, c.1670s, is a painting that presents an extraordinarily rich opportunity for research, both in terms of content and technique. The paper is fully illustrated with details of both the original and the copy taken from it, which

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emphasise the diversity of the items illustrated and the artistic sleight of hand required for their depiction on canvas. The paper shows how the deterioration of the painting has contributed to the loss of much of its three-dimensionality, and attempts to reconstruct the original appearance in the copy. The paper discusses the sources for this type of painting and the genre of pronk vanitas paintings, looking at the objects depicted in the painting and their relationship to the history of their owners, the Paston family. A number of possible attributions for the artist are discussed, including Franciscus Gijsbrechts and Pieter Gerritz van Roestraten. A detailed technical examination is presented, which includes a discussion of the painting’s present condition and conservation history, and the construction of the partial copy is described and illustrated. ALISON STOCK Medieval Gilding Techniques: A Practical Investigation into the Methods and Materials for Water Gilding According to the Treatises 63 pp. text, 23 pp. illustrations plus images embedded in the text The paper presents a practical investigation into medieval water-gilding techniques based on recipes from contemporary treatises. The treatises are described and excerpted in the appendix, along with illustrated recipes for making parchment glue, gypsum loaves, and chalk and gypsum grounds in both parchment and rabbit skin glues. The methods by which ground layers were smoothed onto both canvas and wooden supports are also given. Gilding tests are extensively illustrated, with and without a bole layer, and the results of a number of gilding experiments are tabulated. The paper concludes that the practical experiments highlight the many variables involved in successful gilding, not least the influence of skill and experience on the part of the gilder. ALISON STOCK Reconstruction of a Late Sixteenth-Century Painting on a Copper Support: Hendrick van Balen’s Adoration of the Shepherds from the Fitzwilliam Museum 28 pp. text, 19 pp. illustrations This is one of a number of final year projects to address issues raised by a painting on a copper support and the bibliography includes five reports by previous third year students. The paper opens with a literature review on the rise, decline and survival of paintings on copper supports and the methods of preparation of these panels. After a description of the materials and techniques used in van Balen’s painting, the various stages of construction of the copy are recorded. The effectiveness of the methods employed in the copy is assessed, contrasting actual experience with the instructions given in the literature raising, among other issues, the question of whether garlic is a useful material for panel preparation. The reconstruction

highlights the problem of dust settling on the wet painting and disfiguring the paint layers, a problem acknowledged by van Balen’s contemporary Gerard Dou. The paper is extensively illustrated to show the progress of the copy as well as the technique of the original painting. 2009 EMMA BOYCE Some Observations on Historic Alterations and Auxiliary Supports on Panel Paintings, Royal Collection, Hampton Court Palace Store 19 pp. text, 9 pp. illustrations This paper records what is intended to be the first phase of an ongoing project at Hampton Court Palace to examine the panel paintings and cross-refer any documentation relating to their conservation history. The project discusses wood as a support for painting and looks at the paintings at Hampton Court Palace, considering their history of conservation, the restorers who worked on the paintings, and environmental conditions. A survey of paintings aims to document and assess the effectiveness of auxiliary supports, to record the condition of both painting and support, and to photograph the reverse of all the panels examined. In particular brands, markings, labels and details of original construction are recorded. A Microsoft Access database enabling the paintings to be surveyed is described. Initial observations suggest that many oak panels are thinned with no further treatment, cradles often date from the late nineteenth or early twentieth century, and damage is often caused by the paintings’ auxiliary supports. EMMA BOYCE Investigation of a Seventeenth-Century Dutch Estuary Scene: Examination, Conservation and Reconstruction 41 pp. text with embedded illustrations (figure 3) The project aims to replicate the free, thin painting technique used by Dutch landscape and seascape painters in the seventeenth century. The paper describes the condition and conservation treatment of an anonymous panel painting, removing restoration dating from the 1930s. Digital infrared images enable the entire painting and its underdrawing to be seen. A discussion on technical sources follows plus an explanation of the methods typically employed by painters of the period. The reconstruction of the painting is clearly described and illustrated, producing one of the few copies of the entire area of a painting, made possible in part by the small size of the original, leaving each corner at a different stage of preparation. The reconstruction is estimated to have taken 20 hours over the course of a week. The paper closes with a discussion of possible attributions for the painting, although no one artist emerges with any certainty.

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Figure 3. Emma Boyce’s reconstruction of a Dutch estuary scene. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

DANIELA LEONARD The Fading of Traditional Paints 48 pp. text, 26 pp. illustrations and tables Building on previous studies of the effect of light on organic pigments, the paper examines a range of red lake pigments and mixtures of pigments found in cross-sections taken from paintings that have been treated or examined at the Hamilton Kerr Institute. Three sets of samples are prepared: one is artificially aged in a lightbox constructed at the Institute, another is kept in darkness as a control, and the third is exposed to gallery conditions in the Fitzwilliam Museum and allowed to age naturally. Past experiments are discussed and the procedure for the preparation of the lake pigments, the design and preparation of the samples, and the methods of ageing and colour measurement in the present experiment are described. The paper highlights the difficulties encountered in trying to reconcile craft traditions with scientific procedures as well as the time constraints involved in a student project. The two months available is found to be too short a time in which to see significant changes in the samples. The paper intends to continue the fading tests for as long as the samples can remain at the Fitzwilliam Museum and revisit them to obtain more significant results. DANIELA LEONARD ‘Dirck van Delen Fecit 1628’, Constructing a Seventeenth-Century Dutch Church Interior 26 pp. text, 24 pp. illustrations A painting on panel dated 1628 is examined and copied as an example of a seventeenth-century perspective painting. The importance of smooth preparation and the maintenance of the luminosity of the paint layers are found to be highly important

in addition to the extensive underdrawing used to establish the architectural space. Examination and analysis of the painting clarifies the structure, although sampling is limited as the painting remains in excellent condition. The progress of the copy is described and extensively illustrated, showing all stages up to the finished reconstruction. The care and skill required for the execution of the original painting is recognised, particularly in the difficulty the author experiences in painting straight lines of an even thickness, requiring both manual dexterity and possibly some means of supporting the brush. 2011 VICTORIA SUTCLIFFE Communication with Artists: The Opportunity for Evidence from Living Sources Analysed 101 pp. text, 17 pp. illustrations, CD of audio files This final year project researches and records the techniques of contemporary artists. The paper looks at how interviews with artists are used to inform paintings conservation and assesses different approaches taken while interviewing three contemporary artists: Sigrid Holmwood, Neal Jones and Stephen Buckley. The paper preserves transcripts of the interviews with these artists and audio files are included on a CD-ROM. The paper discusses the history of the use of interviews with artists as a means by which conservation practice can be informed and highlights the lack of critical discourse surrounding the format, methodology, aims and interpretation of the information derived from living artists. The paper’s findings highlight the limitations of the present state of the ‘artist interview’ and suggestions are made to increase the usefulness of these interviews, tailoring them to the needs of paintings conservation in

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particular so that they can be consulted by future conservators when considering these artists’ works. VICTORIA SUTCLIFFE Copy of a Painting Attributed to Degas 114 pp. text with embedded illustrations Portrait of a Woman, bequeathed to the Fitzwilliam Museum in 2006, is attributed to Degas by the donor, a Degas specialist, although neither provenance nor signature is extant. The paper considers both technical and stylistic issues in order to discuss the possible attribution of the painting to Degas and to inform the construction of a copy. Degas’ technique is discussed and the findings of the technical examination presented, in particular the discovery of an unfinished or rubbed-down portrait of a man beneath the present painting. A large number of paintings and pastels by Degas are also examined and conservation records are consulted in order to compare the present work with known works by the artist. The paper concludes that while many technical features would support an attribution to Degas, the actual appearance of the painting weakens the case for attribution and therefore further research is required if the attribution is to be more firmly supported or refuted. The paper then describes the construction of a copy and the appendix includes a condition report on the painting and material relating to comparable paintings. ELEANOR VON ADERKAS X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry of Easel Painting Layers: A Multivariate Statistical Approach 71 pp. text, 30 pp. illustrations The advantages of using X-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectroscopy as a non-destructive analytical tool are presented, along with its limitations in dealing with the layer structure typical of easel paintings. The project aims to devise a method by which XRF spectra of layers can be distinguished and uses the large number of student copies of paintings preserved at the Hamilton Kerr Institute to provide sampling material. The copies are found particularly useful, not just because they imitate traditional painting methods and materials but also because these methods and materials are clearly documented. Thirty-one paintings are analysed, taking more than 450 readings, the paintings in question being recorded in the appendix, mapping the sites that are measured. Principal component analysis (PCA) is applied to the XRF readings with promising, although not entirely conclusive, results. The author tentatively suggests that the method is viable for the separate analysis of layers and suggests directions for future research in order to ascertain whether PCA can aid XRF in reducing the masking effects of paint layers and achieve depth profiling. ELEANOR VON ADERKAS ‘Behold One Work of Mine That Ne’er Shall Fade’: Technical Examination, Reproduction

Figure 4. Eleanor Von Aderkas’ reconstruction of Simon Pietersz Verelst’s A Vase of Flowers. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

and Treatment of A Vase of Flowers by Simon Pietersz Verelst 42 pp. text with embedded illustrations (figure 4) This project builds on the Institute’s expertise in examining and treating Dutch flower paintings with a study of a painting by Simon Pieterz Verelst. The paper examines the condition and conservation history of the painting, highlighting a number of alterations, in particular the enlargement of the painting during lining. The technical examination of the painting is described, thought to be the first such examination of a Verelst painting. While past restoration has altered the painting to some extent, it reveals significant information on the technique of this little-known artist, such as his use of glazes to indicate shadows and the possible use of thin lake glazes to achieve a brilliant green in his leaves, now lost through restoration. The information derived from the original is intended to inform the construction of a copy of the painting; however, the report only describes the copy as far as the double ground layer. 2013 AALIA KAMAL The Materials and Techniques of Vanessa Bell 41 pp. text, 45 pp. illustrations Four works by Vanessa Bell from the collection of King’s College, Cambridge, are examined from both a technical and art-historical standpoint. The paper

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and consistent choice of materials. The research is unable to determine whether or not Bell varnished her works, but concludes that it is likely that Bell intended them to retain a matte surface. It is hoped that the paper will contribute to a more widespread, longer-term project to research Bell’s materials, methods and intentions.

Figure 5. Aalia Kamal’s reconstruction of Canaletto’s Interior Court of the Doge’s Palace. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

Figure 6. Pia Dowse’s reconstruction of Anthony van Dyck’s Portrait of a Man. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

draws on archival documentary material as well as a detailed technical examination of the four paintings. The examination reveals Bell to be, as descriptions of her working practice suggest, something of a messy painter with a tolerance for imperfections in her work. There are fragments of dried paint caught in the paint layers in all four paintings and in one case the support displays uneven canvas stretching and ground application by the artist. Analysis reveals a limited range of pigments and a fairly conservative

AALIA KAMAL The Examination, Reconstruction and Treatment of Interior Court of the Doge’s Palace by Giovanni Antonio Canal, ‘Canaletto’ 37 pp. text, 32 pp. illustrations (figure 5) Canaletto’s career and working practices are discussed, looking at his sequence of painting, which involves blocking in the main compositional elements, adding the architectural detail and then applying the upper paint layers. The painting under examination reflects this approach and thin, defined lines are found marking out the compositional elements in the lower paint layer, visible in raking light as raised lines of paint. After examination, a relatively straightforward conservation treatment is described, comprising cleaning, consolidation, filling, retouching, and varnishing, before the construction of the copy is described. Where the examination of the painting and technical resources do not clarify a particular element of the technique, the treatise by Canaletto’s Venetian contemporary, Giovanni Batista Volpato, guides the reconstruction. The copy demonstrates the economy and efficiency of Canaletto’s painting technique and his understanding of perspective. ADÈLE WRIGHT The Professions of St Luke: What Conservation Can Learn from its Historical and Contemporary Links with Medicine 63 pp. text, no illustrations The historical links between medicine and art are discussed, focusing on painters and examining their shared materials and connections with apothecaries. Contemporary comparisons between the professions of medicine and conservation are then considered, looking at shared skills and the establishment of authority in both fields. The economic position, including the allocation of resources and issues surrounding decision-making are examined. Concepts of health and the preventive role of both medicine and conservation are explored, leading to a final section where the object is examined as a metaphorical patient. The project concludes that the comparison with medicine has potential value for the conservation profession in highlighting processes and assumptions in the conservation field that exist, but are treated differently, elsewhere. It also suggests that medicine can be a useful model for conservation’s development as a profession. ADÈLE WRIGHT Treatment, Technical Analysis and Reconstruction of Eugène Delacroix’s The Lion and the Snake

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82 pp. text, 10 pp. illustrations plus images embedded in the text Delacroix’s painting is considered as an academic sketch. The artist’s theories on art and his choice of materials and techniques are discussed in the context of typical practice in mid-nineteenth-century France. A detailed technical analysis of the painting is presented, followed by an account of the construction of a copy, including a discussion of Delacroix’s method of transferring his drawings to canvas. Delacroix’s palette is also reconstructed, following a practice common in the nineteenth century to set out the palettes of celebrated artists. Delacroix’s interest in materials becomes evident through this study of his philosophy and practice, and shows that his enduring relationship with the colourman Haro enabled him to have his materials tailored to suit his particular artistic approach and preoccupations. 2015 PIA DOWSE Conservation and the Values of Paintings 112 pp. text, no illustrations The paper assesses the decision-making behind the treatment of paintings, asking why particular works are selected for conservation. Values attached to paintings of a cultural, historical, aesthetic, educational, social, economic or utilitarian nature are discussed in the paper’s first section. The reasons for treatment, from damage to future use, are set out, looking at the balance of priorities in deciding on conservation intervention. The impact of such treatment is also considered, potentially maintaining or increasing already recognised values and discovering new ones. The possibility that some values may be lost in the course of treatment is also discussed. The paper’s second section discusses three case studies of paintings displaying differing levels of damage and requiring varying degrees of treatment: Sebastiano del Piombo’s The Adoration of the Shepherds, the rood screen in the church of St Mary the Virgin, Belstead, Suffolk, and Venus del Pardo, a copy after Titian. The paper presents a questionnaire completed by individuals involved in the treatment of the three paintings and analyses its results. PIA DOWSE Technical Analysis and Reconstruction of Anthony van Dyck’s Portrait of a Man 64 pp. text, 10 pp. illustrations plus images embedded in the text (figure 6) Van Dyck’s workshop organisation is presented, as well as painting materials and practices typical of the seventeenth century, in order to put the portrait in context. It appears originally to have been an oil sketch with a fictive oval frame added later, as well as a strip of canvas along the top of the painting. Technical analysis follows and then an account of the construction of a copy of the painting, preparing two canvases to allow one to be used for practice

Figure 7. Shan Kuang’s reconstruction of Sebastiano del Piombo’s Madonna with Child. Chris Titmus, Hamilton Kerr Institute.

before making the final reconstruction. Technical examination reveals the painting to be typical of Van Dyck’s output and the copy demonstrates his extreme economy of means and technical control as well as his capacity to execute an accomplished portrait at speed. SHAN KUANG Investigation and Reconstruction of a Tondo: Sebastiano del Piombo’s Madonna with Child (c.1513) from the Fitzwilliam Museum 77 pp. text, 23 pp. illustrations (figure 7) Both the tondo and the artist’s The Adoration of the Shepherds were in the Hamilton Kerr’s studios as this report was being written, allowing complementary research into both paintings. Biographical details of the artist along with a description of the tondo and its condition and treatment are discussed before the results of a detailed technical examination are presented. These reveal a build-up of paint layers that rarely differ from the charcoal drawing beneath. The reconstruction of the painting, including the challenge of preparing a circular panel, is described. The execution of the copy emphasises the artist’s careful planning in creating the layer structure, as each stage of painting has a significant influence on the final appearance. The copy allows the feasibility of various conclusions from the technical examination to be tested, such as the impression that the charcoal underdrawing remained unfixed in oil and that the red glazes were dabbed on with a cloth, the latter found to be crucial in achieving the effects seen in the original painting. SHAN KUANG Re-examining Prior Findings and Assumptions: Technical Study of A Magus at a Table by Jan Lievens from Upton House 68 pp. text, 38 pp. illustrations

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Questions remain surrounding the subject matter and attribution of the painting, which bears a nonoriginal Rembrandt signature. It is one of up to 10 versions of the same composition, almost all in private ownership and therefore difficult to access. Technical examination attempts to gain insight into the painting’s relationship to the other versions and to clarify the materials and construction used by the artist. The paper shows the value of the Hamilton Kerr Institute’s own archive of documentary materials and cross-sections in enabling the author to study an earlier examination of the painting in the 1980s, re-polishing and re-examining the crosssections taken. In addition, dendrochronological analysis is undertaken again in order to clarify the contested dating of the panel. The considerable body of research available on Lievens and Rembrandt since the painting’s first examination is taken into account in order to challenge some of the assumptions made in the early 1980s, and although a firm date for the panel is not obtained, the former dendrochronological analysis date of ‘after 1660’ is found to have been based on an outdated reference dataset and can now be discounted.

3. ‘Diploma in the conservation of easel paintings’, Statutes and Ordinances of the University of Cambridge, Cambridge 2015, pp. 542–43. 4. A. Ballestrem, ‘The conservator-restorer: a definition of the profession’, International Journal of Museum Management and Curatorship, vol. 3, 1984, p. 75, n. 1. 5. C. Villers (ed.), Lining Paintings: Papers from the Greenwich Conference on Comparative Lining Techniques, London 2003. 6. A. Roy and P. Smith (eds), Preventive Conservation: Practice, Theory and Research, London 1994. 7. A. Massing, Painting Restoration before ‘la Restauration’: The Origins of the Profession in France, London 2012; H. Boothroyd Brooks, Practical Developments in English Easel-Painting Conservation, c. 1824–1968, from Written Sources, unpublished PhD thesis, Courtauld Institute of Art, London 1999. 8. M. Kirby Talley, Portrait Painting in England: Studies in the Technical Literature before 1700, London 1981; P. Taylor, Condition: The Ageing of Art, London 2015. 9. For a discussion of other areas of difficulty encountered, as well as the strengths of the reconstruction process, see M. Kempski, ‘Making reconstructions at the Hamilton Kerr Institute’, in L. Wrapson, J. Rose, R. Miller and S. Bucklow (eds), In Artists’ Footsteps: The Reconstruction of Pigments and Paintings, London 2012, pp. 1–16.

Acknowledgements

I am grateful to HKI staff members Spike Bucklow, Lucy Wrapson and Mary Kempski for a useful interchange of ideas concerning this project, to Sarah Eastwood for her valuable assistance in the library, and to Chris Titmus for his provision of the figures. Thanks are also extended to Pippa Balch, who kindly explained the approach to projects taken by the Courtauld Institute of Art and to Alexandra Walker who confirmed the date of the BAPCR’s change of name. I would also like to thank all the students whose work has been cited and hope that they regard the results of their research with justifiable pride and as a valuable contribution to the Hamilton Kerr Institute’s first 40 years.

Notes

1. Samuel van Hoogstraten, 1678, quoted in R. Eadie, A Copy of Gerrit Dou’s Woman at a Window, unpublished typescript, 1989, frontispiece. 2. University of Cambridge, Report of the Council of the Senate on the Establishment of a Hamilton Kerr Institute, 10 November 1975 (unpublished document held at the Hamilton Kerr Institute).

Author Sally Woodcock is a practising easel paintings conservator with a longstanding research interest in the trade in artists’ materials in nineteenth-century London. After qualifying as an easel paintings conservator at the Courtauld Institute of Art in 1992 she spent three years researching the papers of the artists’ colourman Charles Roberson & Co. at the Hamilton Kerr Institute. Following a hiatus of almost 14 years, in which she has worked both freelance and as a paintings conservator at the Guildhall Art Gallery, edited the International Institute for Conservation’s Reviews in Conservation and taught History of Art with Material Studies at University College London, she returned to Cambridge in 2011 to undertake part-time doctoral research on her thesis entitled Charles Roberson, London Colourman, and the Supply of Painting Materials 1820–1920, supervised by Professor Peter Mandler in the History Faculty and Dr Spike Bucklow at the Hamilton Kerr Institute.

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