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Behind the Scenes in Conservation: A Portrait’s Curious Characteristics

by Serena Urry, Chief Conservator

12/7/2023

#CAMConservation , #Paintings_Conservation , #Weir , #Twachtman , #X-ray , #hidden_paintings

This small painting by American artist Julian Alden Weir (1852–1919) was donated to the museum by the artist in 1911.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Getting technical with textiles! What’s “selvage”?

by Obie Linn, Conservator of Textiles

11/16/2023

CAMConservation , selvage , Art Deco , fabric , textile conservation

We’ve got it all! All the width of this 1920s embroidered voile (fine soft sheer fabric), that is.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Revealing the Details of an Egyptian Scarab Ring

by Kelly Rectenwald, Objects Conservator

11/9/2023

CAMConservation , objects conservation , ancient egypt , scarab ring , bronze , bronze disease

Several small copper alloy objects, pieces of jewelry and articles of adornment, are all showing signs of bronze disease.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Gainsborough’s Ladies

by Serena Urry, Chief Conservator

11/2/2023

CAMConservation , paintings conservation , Thomas Gainsborough

These three portraits by 18th-century British artist Thomas Gainsborough are in the paintings conservation lab to be examined for the British catalog project.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Repairing an Ancient Egyptian Jar

by Kelly Rectenwald, Associate Objects Conservator

10/12/2023

ancient egypt , ceramic jar , objects conservation , challenging repair , CAMConservation

In the Conservation Lab, we are working on this large ceramic jar from Dynasty I Egypt (3100–2900 BCE).

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: A Twisted Tale

by Serena Urry, Chief Conservator

10/5/2023

CAMConservation , paintings conservation , panel paintings

This small round painting, attributed to the studio of the 17th century Dutch artist Frans Hals, was recently in the paintings conservation lab to have its discolored varnish removed.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: View of the Museum on the Hill

by Cecile Mear, Conservator of Works on Paper

9/28/2023

CAMConservation , Cincinnati Art Museum , collodion photograph , paperweight , archives

An interesting artifact has entered the museum Archives, courtesy of Archivist/Records Manager Geoff Edwards. This glass paperweight holds a small photograph of the museum and the Cincinnati Art Academy (now located downtown).

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Ready for a Closeup? Hawes’ Flag Dress

by Obie Linn, Textile Conservator

9/21/2023

textile conservation , Elizabeth Hawes , Flag Dress , before and after , CAMConservation , textiles

There are few things more satisfying than seeing some really dramatic “before and after” photos when a conservation treatment is complete! Conservation of Elizabeth Hawes’ “flag dress” or Geographic (1940) has wrapped up, and now you can flip through a whole album of “before/after” pairs showing the transformations of many of the flags that cover the dress.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Jain Shrine—Now on Display!

by Kelly Rectenwald, Associate Objects Conservator

9/14/2023

behind the scenes , objects conservation , CAMConservation , Jain Shrine

If you’ve been following our Conservation blog posts, you may have seen several updates as we carried out treatment over the past two years.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Reflection by Raphael Soyer

by Cecile Mear, Conservator of Works on Paper

8/31/2023

Raphael Soyer , prints , paper conservation , CAMConservation

In 2019 and 2020 the museum received three prints by American artist Raphael Soyer (1899–1987), the first of his prints to enter the museum’s collection.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Summery White Dress—Only 150 Years Old!

by Obie Linn, Associate Conservator of Textiles

8/24/2023

CAMConservation , textile conservation , historic childrenswear

The forecourt display case in the Conversations Gallery is fresh! A new rotation arrived last week, and it is practically aglow with summery white freshness. How does a 150-year-old child’s dress look this crisp and breezy?

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Magic Mirror’s Secrets Revealed

by Kelly Rectenwald, Associate Objects Curator

8/17/2023

Magic Mirror , CT scan , Ethnicon Endo-Surgery , Amida Buddha , CAMConservation

Last month we took our Magic Mirror to Ethicon Endo-Surgery for analysis to learn more about this ancient bronze object and the seemingly magical way it can project the image of the Amida Buddha under certain lighting conditions.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Removing Varnish, Brightening a Landscape

by Serena Urry, Chief Conservator

8/10/2023

CAMConservation , paintings conservation , Theodore Robinson , Impressionism , American Impressionism

We’ve had this painting by American Impressionist Theodore Robinson (1852–1896) listed for varnish removal for a while. That’s because curators and conservators know that Impressionist artists rarely varnished their paintings.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Mounting Many Mini Prints

by Kay Horak, Paper Conservation Intern

8/3/2023

CAMConservation , paper conservation , cam intern , Léonard Gaultier

Over a couple of weeks, I examined, cleaned, and rehoused a series of sixteenth-century prints by Léonard Gaultier (circa 1561–circa 1630).

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Traveling in (Sustainable!) Style

by Obie Linn, Associate Conservator of Textiles

7/27/2023

Ann Lowe , CAMConservation , 1930s fashion , textile conservation , Winterthur Museum

How would you like to travel in a custom “sleeping bag”? These three dresses designed by Ann Lowe (American, 1898–1981) are headed to the Winterthur Museum in Delaware for the exhibition Ann Lowe: American Couturier, snuggled in soft surrounds for a safe and comfortable trip.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Pyxis

by Kelly Rectenwald, Associate Objects Conservator

7/13/2023

CAMConservation , ceramics , CAM collection

We are working on some tiny ceramics!

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: The Approaching Storm

by Serena Urry, Chief Conservator

7/5/2023

CAMConservation , paintings conservation , Thomas Barker , CAM British Painting catalog , CAM British Paintings

Another work recently conserved for the British catalog project, The Approaching Storm by English artist Thomas Barker (1769–1847), presented a challenge.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Taking Care of Japanese Prints

by Cecile Mear, Conservator of Works on Paper

6/30/2023

CAMConservation , Toyohara Kunichika , ukiyo-e prints , kabuki actor prints , paper conservation

In 2005 the museum received a gift of Japanese art that includes ceramics, paintings, and prints. Now that our Curator of Prints Kristin Spangenberg has finished researching the 35 prints in this gift, I am reviewing their needs before moving them to their permanent storage locations.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: A “Conversation” with Coco Chanel

by Obie Linn, Associate Conservator of Textiles

6/21/2023

CAMConservation , vintage chanel , vintage , textile conservation

What is one of the best things about being a textile conservator? To me, it’s that I sometimes have the chance to “converse” with my fashion design heroes through their work.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: A Seemingly Innocuous British Portrait

by Kristopher Reisser, Conservation Intern

6/8/2023

CAMConservation , paintings conservation , cam intern , mather brown , portrait , European Paintings

When I read the curatorial file for this painting, I discovered a remarkably expansive biography, not just of the painting itself, but also of the sitter and the artist. What is most interesting to me, though, is the sitter’s story.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Unfurling the Cincinnati Map

by Cecile Mear, Conservator of Works on Paper

6/1/2023

CAMConservation , paper conservation , Courttney Cooper , mounting with magnets , Visionaries and Voices

This week, the museum installed a twenty-first century take on the monumental “roll-up” map.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Hey Gorgeous!

by Obie Linn, Associate Conservator of Textiles

5/25/2023

CAMConservation , textile conservation , embroidery , indian textiles

This week, grab a sneak peek at “coming attractions” with this Indian floor spread! She’ll be the “star of the show” in our Anu and Shekhar Gallery of South Asian Art when installed at the end of June.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Jain Shrine Nearing Completion!

by Kelly Rectenwald, Associate Objects Conservator

5/18/2023

behind the scenes , objects conservation , CAMConservation , Jain Shrine

The treatment on our Jain Shrine is (finally!) nearing completion!

X-raying Cézanne: Next Steps

by Franck M. Mercurio, Publications Editor

5/15/2023

CAM collection , Paul Cezanne , CAMConservation

See the painting in Gallery 227 during your next visit.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Street Cleaning

by Serena Urry, Chief Conservator

5/11/2023

CAMConservation , paintings conservation , hopper

We recently cleaned Sunlight on Prospect Street, Gloucester, Massachusetts by Edward Hopper (1882–1967).

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Jacquard Loom Blanket

by Obie Linn, Associate Conservator of Textiles

4/27/2023

CAMConservation , textile conservation , jacquard , american coverlets , delaware ohio

Does crisp spring weather make you crave a snuggly blanket? The Cincinnati Art Museum has several!

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Shell & Barnacle Covered Bowl

by Kelly Rectenwald, Associate Objects Conservator

4/20/2023

CAMConservation , Celadon Glaze , Chinese bowl , Marine life , Saltwater , objects conservation

This fifteenth-century Chinese ceramic bowl presents some intriguing features that tell a fascinating story of its past. Shells and barnacles cover the bowl’s surface. These unusual attachments are commonly seen on objects that have spent time in ocean environments, in this example, possibly the result of a shipwreck.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: A Charming Secret

by Serena Urry, Chief Conservator

4/13/2023

CAMConservation , paintings conservation , Impressionism , Pierre Auguste Renoir

Painted by the French Impressionist Pierre Auguste Renoir (1841–1919), Fog on Guernsey recently paid a visit to our lab for cleaning—and it let us in on a charming secret.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Cincinnati 1954

by Cecile Mear, Conservator of Works on Paper

4/6/2023

CAMConservation , Laurence Sisson , paper conservation , Cincinnati Scenes

A recent bequest of 20th-century American prints and paintings includes this view of Cincinnati by Laurence Sisson (1928–2015). Painted in watercolor with pen and black ink, the scene captures downtown buildings overlooking the Ohio River as Sisson saw them in 1954.

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Wow! That’s a PINK Dress!

by Obie Linn, Textile Conservator

3/30/2023

CAMConservation , textile conservation , pink dress

Treatment is complete for this 1920s silk chiffon and velvet dress which showed loss in several places, including the right shoulder.