Academic thesis

Stefanie Inge Schindler: “The abbesses of colognes Cäcilien-convent – An ensemble of easel paintings from the 18th century. Investigation, development of conception and implementation of selected treatments Back
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Overview:  
 
Abstract: This master thesis is dedicated to an ensemble of easel paintings from the 18th century, showing four
portraits of abbesses. Examinations have revealed that only three paintings show the above-mentioned
abbesses while the other one illustrates one abbess of colognes monastery St. Maximin. A multitude of
serious damage phenomenon, like loose canvas on the paintings boarders, holes, tears and deformations in
the textile, losses and lifting of the paint layer as well as extremely aged varnishes, lead to conservational
and restorative analysis of the artworks. Based on the investigation results of technology and condition a
concept was developed aiming the substance-assurance and a presentable, homogenous appearance of the
four paintings. One particularly unstable object was, exemplary for the whole ensemble, treated with
selected measures. They include the consolidation of paint layers, surface cleaning, tear- and loss-mending
in the canvas as well as the mounting of a backside protection. Successful measures to remove the aged
varnishes could be worked out by comprehensive series of tests. The surface of the only unvarnished
painting is extremely sensitive due to phenomenon of alkaline hydrolysis, especially protrusion.
Nevertheless a treatment option to reduce the saponified crust of the paintings surface could be found.

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Details:
  • academic institution:  TH Köln
  • kind of theses:  Masterarbeit
  • main Tutor:  Dipl.-Rest. Petra Demuth
  • assistant Tutor:  Dipl.-Rest. Marc Peez
  • date:  2014
  • Language:  German
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