Old fashioned way to restore paintings

Change which takes place in old paintings, is the discontinuance of molecular cohesion, which, beginning on the surface in small fissures, penetrates to the very foundation. His process is to expose the picture in a tight box to the vapor of alcohol, ether benzine, turpentine, or other similar solvent. The process has been successfully tried in several instances.

_Compound for Receiving the Colors used in Encaustic Painting._

Dissolve 9 oz. of gum arabic in 1 pt. of water, add 14 oz. of finely powdered mastic and 10 oz. of white wax, cut in small pieces, and whilst hot, add by degrees 2 pts. of cold spring-water; then strain the composition.

_Another Method._

Mix 24 oz. of mastic with gum-water, leaving out the wax, and when sufficiently beaten and dissolved over the fire, add by degrees 1 1/2 pts. of cold water, and strain.

Or, dissolve 9 oz. of gum arabic in 1 1/2 pts. of water, then add 1 lb. of white wax. Boil them over a slow fire, pour them into a cold vessel, and beat them well together. When this is mixed with the colors, it will require more water than the others. This is used in painting, the colors being mixed with these compositions as with oil, adding water if necessary. When the painting is finished, melt some white wax, and with a hard brush varnish the painting, and, when cold, rub it to make it entirely smooth.

Return to The Household Cyclopedia of General Information