Julian Baumgartner

Julian Baumgartner Follow

Baumgartner Fine Art Restoration - the oldest and now second generation fine art conservation studio in Chicago. Established in 1978. info@bfar.com

http://www.bfar.com/

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I generally don窶冲 prefer to do work on-site but if I have to I demand a damn good view 沽 what a beautiful city on a beautiful day!! #chicago #chicago #chicago #CHICAGO
When you buy expensive artwork and then put computer monitors in front of it. 沽#corporateArt
The client assured me it窶冱 not dirty and doesn窶冲 need a cleaning... 泗 #artrestoration #artconservation #restoration #conservation #art #fineart #painting #canvas #oilpaint #chicago #paintingconservation #arthistory #paintingrestoration #bfar
Just a small clip of that John Singer Sargent painting I worked on this week. It was removed from a mildew-y board and mounted to a new 8-ply acid free board. The old label was saved, wrapped in PET film and mounts to the verso. #artrestoration #artconservation #restoration #conservation #art #fineart #painting #canvas #oilpaint #chicago #paintingconservation #arthistory #paintingrestoration #bfar
Ok... this one will be long, bear with me. This is a detail photo of the signature on an Albert Bierstadt. As you can see the red inscription in the lower right is faint and a bit difficult to decipher. A major auction house has cast doubts on the authenticity of this piece despite being in the catalogue raisonnテゥ. Their rationale is that the signature area appears to be coated with a so-called masking varnish. First off there is no such thing as a 窶徇asking varnish窶- there are materials and methods that can confuse, obfuscate, or inhibit the viewing of the paint surface under UV making it difficult to decipher old restoration work from the original paint but the idea of a dedicated varnish designed to mask retouching is a bit of art world folklore. Second, UV light is used to help understand what on a painting is new and what is old, often indicating restoration work. All organic material fluoresces but newer material more so. It窶冱 that difference that can reveal what has been added since the artist completed the work. Those areas that are new and fluoresce will appear purple or indigo/black. UV light can also reveal old natural resin varnish; those areas glow light, almost neon green. The use of UV to read a painting is complicated and when used by inexperienced or motivated people false results can be seen. So... when the auction house viewed this Bierstadt they saw the faint signature, worried it was tampered with (faint doesn窶冲 automatically mean suspicious- that窶冱 quite a leap to make...) and then saw a odd shape green blob under UV and jumped to conclusions. The truth is that this is a sketch, it was in fact conserved before (very well, I might add) and a bit skinned (over cleaned such that some pigment was removed) and the previous conservator left a lot of old natural resin varnish on the painting rather that risk doing damage, particularly around the signature (not uncommon or wrong- better to leave it if you aren窶冲 skilled enough rather then irrevocably damage the artwork) and this green blob shape in the second photo probably scared the sh!t out of the auction house because they don窶冲 know how to read a painting under UV. Phew!
Though it窶冱 only a sketch, this painting by Albert Bierstadt of Mount Corcoran is damn impressive. With a Bierstadt and a Sargent at the Studio this week, it窶冱 feeling downright awe inspiring! #artrestoration #artconservation #restoration #conservation #art #fineart #painting #canvas #oilpaint #chicago #paintingconservation #arthistory #paintingrestoration #bfar #albertbierstadt
Keying our a stretcher is an essential part of ensuring that the canvas stays stable. By inserting these triangular wedges into the floating blind bridle joint (woodworkers, corrrect me if wrong- I actually don窶冲 know if there窶冱 a name for this joint other than 窶徭tretcher bar joint窶...) and hammering them in a bit we can expand the joint and add tension to the painting. The small hole is for fishing line that will be tacked to the stretcher to ensure that the key isn窶冲 lost. It doesn窶冲 take a lot of force to expand the joint- I窶冦 using a tacking hammer and mostly letting the head fall on the key. #artrestoration #artconservation #restoration #conservation #art #fineart #painting #canvas #oilpaint #chicago #paintingconservation #arthistory #paintingrestoration #bfar #woodworking #poplar #sugarpine #artisttips
You窶冤l notice that below the painting and underneath the tacking iron is a sheet of silicone release film. Nothing sticks to this film and allows the tacking iron to slide easily. This ensures that the painting doesn窶冲 get stuck to the film causing major problems. After the painting is fully removed the adhesive residue will be removed and then I can stabilize the paper and begin the process of mounting it to a new board. #artrestoration #artconservation #restoration #conservation #art #fineart #painting #canvas #oilpaint #chicago #paintingconservation #arthistory #paintingrestoration #bfar
The process of removing the John Singer Sargent painting from board is relatively straight forward albeit slow. With heat applied from both the bottom via my hot table (at 200 degrees it窶冱 nice to work over on a cold winter day!) and the top in the form of a small tacking iron the wax adhesive is softened and then the painting can be peeled off. #artrestoration #artconservation #restoration #conservation #art #fineart #painting #canvas #oilpaint #chicago #paintingconservation #arthistory #paintingrestoration #bfar
Well, I窶冤l be!  I started this account from a hospital bed in a recovery room after surgery as something to do other than watching tv. I figured it would be fun to track some of the projects I was working on and I might connect with some interesting folk. Never in my wildest imagination did I think that 10k people would be interested in my photos and ramblings. Suffice it to say I窶冦 totally humbled, and thank you for your interest, comments, and support. On to the next 10k (yeaeeaaah, right!)
Another little clip showing the application of wax to a bronze sculpture. You can see how the surface darkens when the wax is applied to the open pores of the bronze. It will lighten up a bit and after buffing Look nice and shiny! #artrestoration #artconservation #restoration #conservation #art #fineart #painting #canvas #oilpaint #chicago #paintingconservation #arthistory #paintingrestoration #bfar #bronze #sculpture
Yup, this is definitely not a painting. This video demonstrates the process of applying wax to a bronze sculpture. I was lucky enough to learn all about bronze casting, repair, and restoration when I was in college many years ago. It窶冱 come in handy more than a few times. After the surface of the bronze is cleaned with a ph neutral non-ionic detergent the surface is heated up a bit to open the pores of the bronze. Then a microcrystalline wax is brushed onto the surface and allowed to dry to a matte finish. The final step is to buff the wax to a beautiful sheen. #artrestoration #artconservation #restoration #conservation #art #fineart #painting #canvas #oilpaint #chicago #paintingconservation #arthistory #paintingrestoration #bfar #bronze #sculpture #fernandobotero #fire #torch