Art Sandwich

When I was in college, I was certain upon graduating that I would merge the two sides of my education – my intensive study in both right and left brained fields – and go into art conservation. Ultimately the lure of something a little more sleek and something that lacked the requisite years upon years of study drew me away from that, but it was something I pursued with the most passion to date at that point. Am I a disappointment?

So, I didn’t follow through, clearly. An art conservator I am not, though I put in some time at various museums over the years, learning the techniques of the trade for cleaning and repairing fine art. There are some strange ones – things you would never suspect if you weren’t told. While you’re not allowed to touch the work in a gallery or museum, and conservators and art handlers use white gloves when moving them, the best way to gently clean grime from a piece is with a Q-tip wetted with your own spit, rolled slowly and lightly over the surface of the work. You don’t want to be parched when you do this work.

But being distanced as I am from this world, I still sometimes want to take on a rehabilitation for fun – I have a few frames at my place that were once quite grand, and are now… anything but. I see big things for them, though. Perhaps I’ll get to it and actually show you guys my progress. I’m not thinking of going so traditional, though. I don’t have the materials, don’t have the space, to do them justice. And they’re nothing so precious that I’d be destroying a piece of history by taking some liberties with the final product.

I was reminded of all of this by a recent post I saw on The Brick House, which shows a technique for cleaning a painting that I would probably reserve, also, for pieces that are not so precious because as you will see, it’s quite unusual. I’m going to dig around on the WWW and see if I can’t find more techniques like these, so I can speed my process and finish another one of those projects that just sits in the corner for far too long, waiting for my attention.

A bagel and a painting

Here it is, Morgan cleans a painting with a bagel.

Until next time,



2 responses to “Art Sandwich

  1. Yeah, A $3 painting. You don’t want to clean anything to valuable – this is my thrift store art solution since I’m totally not going over it with a q-tip.

    • I love it! Reminds you not to be too careful and precious with things – the final result is great, and it’s such an easy thing to do to make it feel more ‘yours’ and finished.

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