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Behind the Scenes in Conservation: The Home Stretch!

by Conservation


behind the scenes , conservation , altarpiece , retablo of saint peter , 15th century

Our paintings conservator is rounding up the final bits and pieces that comprise the 15th century Spanish altarpiece, the Retablo of Saint Peter.  The last two-dimensional piece to be conserved is the large painted and gilded board that is a backdrop to the painted wood statue of Saint Peter, currently being treated by our objects conservator.  When the back board was removed from storage and sent to the Conservation lab, its appearance contrasted noticeably to the gilding restoration that has been completed on the eighteen paintings over the past two years. 

Shown here in front of the conserved paintings, the back board’s gilding is covered with the heavy grime and discolored metallic waxes that once obscured so much of the framing around the paintings.  Once conserved, the back board will shine like the rest of the large complex altarpiece.  Look for the Retablo to return to Gallery 203 this summer.