Inept Conservation

Russian Old Master Painting Rescued From Trash

Discolored varnish and poor restorations obscure real qualities

Russian Masterpiece Painting is Resurrected

Recently, this artwork was politically classified to be thrown away until a sharp-eyed collector saved it from the trash. What probably happened, over the last 100 years, was that after a small rip had been repaired poorly, then again, and then another rip… and finally, the damage and the dirty surface made it fit for “long term storage” where it was forgotten… until someone started to clear things out.

This photo shows a detail of the painting during cleaning of the overpaint and discolored varnish revealing exquisite details and artistic quality. We’ll keep you posted as we resurrect the gorgeous woman in a white dress enjoying the good life.

This painting has a great story I’m sure you’ll find interesting, even in its abbreviated form: (more…)


Even Trash Can Be Turned Into Art Treasure with Proper Conservation

Shockingly, this stunning piece was found flaking and dingy in the garbage! An inept attempt was made to “restore” it that involved an abundant application of wax to hold the painting together and a wipe with solvent to remove part of the dirt.

The Dumpster Diver who discovered the painting donated it to a collector who recognized that under the disaster of flaking paint, wax, and grime, there was a valuable vintage piece.  Some research and careful examination yielded the title and date: “The Discussion” from 1929.  This discovery prompted the collector to contact us for a closer examination and professional conservation treatment. (more…)