Portrait of C H Parker

The painting is shown with the kind permission of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers, London.

The painting is executed in oil on linen canvas. It was in a severely damaged condition having been torn vertically and also having lost some of the original canvas. The whole background had been repainted and a thick yellow varnish and nicotine layer obscured the quality of the painting. It was not possible to see the signature nor the fact that the sitter was in court dress, wearing a velvet suit.

The painting was cleaned, removing nicotine and the heavily discoloured varnish. The crude overpainting in the background was also removed. This revealed a considerably more interesting background. It was then lined onto a new linen canvas as a support for the original canvas and the missing areas of canvas were replaced with canvas insets. The adhesive used is reversible so that the painting can be easily removed from the new canvas should this be necessary in the future. All losses were then filled and the tears were restored using reversible paint medium and the painting was varnished using a conservation grade varnish. As can be seen from the comparison, there is a staggering difference in the painting’s condition before and after the restoration process.

Below we can see how complete the transformation is: