Annual frame dusting and glass cleaning 2015

IMG_3105      IMG_3101 IMG_3114       IMG_3113

Once a year I arrive at the Royal Holloway Picture Gallery with my dusting equipment. I set up the ladder and start work in one corner and, carefully and methodically, work my way around the room. The benefits in both visual and preventive conservation terms are obvious but there is another extremely important aspect to this work… the conservation check up.  The opportunity afforded by dusting enables me to get very close to the surface of the paintings. I can then examine them for any evidence of instability of the paint layers or structural movement or change in the canvases and panels. Checking the paintings annually, builds a deep knowledge of the collection and is invaluable for:

  • prioritising conservation treatment
  • developing an understanding of how the environmental forces within the gallery affect the paintings
  • establishing a body of evidence to promote the funding of preventive conservation measures

So, annual dusting improves the clarity of the collection in all senses of the word and it is also an enormous privilege for me. The picture gallery is open to the public every Wednesday between 11am-4pm in the Autumn and Spring terms (22 September – 12 December 2014, 12 January – 18 March 2015). IMG_3135


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