Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010
An investment in an oil painting is made with careful scrutiny and consideration, and with proper care, lasts for generations into the future. Dealers specializing in fine art such as recognize the beauty and importance of an artist's work, and that it should last well beyond a lifetime. Museums go to extreme lengths to preserve the masterpieces in their collection. Maintenance of a piece of art need not be costly, but strict adherence to certain guidelines will avoid the certain degradation and prevent its value from diminishing.

Whether the piece is new or old, preventative care and handling are relatively the same. Newly commissioned pieces can and will degrade over time. If any damage has occurred, do not attempt a repair. Hire a professional restorer to fix any problems. A conservator can offer specialized recommendations based on the condition of the painting. If the artwork is old and in need of cleaning, that is also best left to an expert.

Here are some basic rules for protecting and preserving an oil painting:

Take care not to expose the painting to extremes in humidity, heat, or cold. Do not place it directly near an air conditioning or heating vent. Air flow, temperature, and particles of dust and dirt negatively impact the condition. Cracking and peeling due to dust settling is not uncommon, and is costly to repair. Displaying artwork in heavily trafficked areas is not advised, as this increases dirt and dust in the vicinity.

Avoid any prolonged exposure to sunlight. This will cause fading of the oils on the portrait. Some oil paintings will have a coating of varnish, but this protection only goes so far. Exposure to sunlight advances the darkening properties of some varnishes and will affect the appearance.

Hanging a portrait is generally a better option than leaning it against something. If the piece is leaned against any surface, be certain that no portion of the stretched canvas is touched. The frame or stretcher bars are the only portions that should lean on a surface in order to prevent damage.

Do not use any dust sprays or commercial cleaning products to clean your artwork. Dust lightly with a soft, dry cloth or a soft brush to keep dust and dirt to minimum.

When handling a painting, face it towards your body. Touch only the frame portion using both hands (paintings can be heavy). Wash your hands before handling. In the event of moving or storing, artwork should rest face up on a padded surface in a fully enclosed encasement.

An oil painting is a prized possession and a thing of beauty. It is not just a piece of art, it is also a piece of the artist. Select and care for it properly and the value will only increase with time.



Oil Painting, Artwork, Oil Paintings, Artworks, Canvas Artworks, Modern Arts, Abstracts Art



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