Seeing Through Paintings: Physical Examination in Art Historical Studies

Seeing Through Paintings: Physical Examination in Art Historical Studies

by Andrea Kirsh, Rustin S. Levenson
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0300094086

ISBN-13: 9780300094084

Pub. Date: 02/28/2013

Publisher: Yale University Press

This prize-winning book offers the only comprehensive discussion available on materials, techniques, and condition issues in Western easel paintings from medieval times to the present.

“An essential handbook for the pro, and also a beautifully illustrated primer for the layperson. Kirsh and Levenson teach the most valuable lessons about painting of all:

Overview

This prize-winning book offers the only comprehensive discussion available on materials, techniques, and condition issues in Western easel paintings from medieval times to the present.

“An essential handbook for the pro, and also a beautifully illustrated primer for the layperson. Kirsh and Levenson teach the most valuable lessons about painting of all: how meanings, material, and techniques are bound up together.”—John Walsh, former director, J. Paul Getty Museum

“Every element of Kirsh and Levenson’s book is smart, concise, and informative. . . . [It is] the essential book on its subject.”—Kenneth Baker, San Francisco Examiner & Chronicle

“A long overdue book with direct relevance for modern students of the history of art.”—Libby Sheldon, Burlington Magazine

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780300094084
Publisher:
Yale University Press
Publication date:
02/28/2013
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
344
Product dimensions:
7.88(w) x 10.25(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Preface xi
Introduction
1(4)
The Support
5(64)
Wood Supports
5(9)
Technical Examination of Wood Panels
14(14)
Frans Hals' Jacobus Zaffius: A Panel Fragment?
16(2)
A Question of Format of a Giotto Altarpiece
18(3)
The St. Victor Altarpiece in Siena Cathedral: A Polyptych Reassembled
21(4)
Nineteenth-Century American Use of Textured Panels: The Hardships of War, or Aesthetic Choice?
25(3)
Fabric Supports
28(3)
Expedient Choice of Support
31(8)
Stretchers and Strainers
39(1)
Technical Examination of Fabric Supports
39(19)
A Couple Reunited: Rembrandt's Portrait of a Man Trimming His Quill and Portrait of a Young Woman Seated Linked Through X-Ray Studies of the Canvases
44(2)
Frans Hals' Feyntje van Steenkiste and Lucas de Clerc: An Ill-Matched Couple of Canvases
46(3)
Rembrandt's Alexander the Great: Canvas and Paint Studies Correlate with Historical Evidence in Identifying a pieced Canvas
49(5)
Picasso's Mother and Child: An Artist's Gift Records His Change of Subject and Format
54(2)
M. et Mme Edouard Manet by Edgar Degas: A Fragment of a Friendly Exchange
56(2)
Manet's Execution of Maximilian: Fragments of Studio Damage
58(1)
Stone and Metal: The Support as Paragone
58(7)
Artists' Board and Paper Laid to Canvas or Panel
65(4)
The Ground and Preparatory Layers
69(32)
The Physical and Aesthetic Function of Grounds and Their Composition
69(3)
Examination of Grounds
72(2)
Colored Grounds
74(5)
Judith Leyster or Circle of Gerard van Honthorst: Ground for an Attribution?
77(2)
Textured Grounds
79(5)
Jacob Lawrence's Migration Series: The Creative Use of Accidents
79(5)
Absorbent Grounds
84(2)
Painting on Raw Canvas
86(1)
Grounds for Gilding and Pastiglia
86(2)
Ground Incising
88(13)
Vermeer's Perspective Construction: Pinpoint Proof
92(2)
Uccello's Hunt in the Forest: Ground Incising is Key to Perspectival Reconstruction
94(4)
Caravaggio and Grounds for Argument: Incising as Evidence of Drawing from Life
98(3)
The Paint Layer
101(113)
Pigments
102(3)
Examination of the Paint Layer by Cross-Sections and Destructive Sampling
105(4)
La Tour's Fortune-Teller: Pigment Identification Confirms the Fortune
107(2)
Gilding, Tooling, Punchwork
109(1)
Binding Media
110(1)
Egg Tempera
111(1)
Size (Distemper) and Other Temperas
112(1)
Drying Oils
113(8)
Paint Handling
121(26)
Playing with Viscosity: Leonardo's Finger Painting
134(7)
Jackson Pollock's Blue poles: The Myth of Inebriation Versus the Evidence of Deliberation
141(6)
Acrylics and Other Synthetic Media
147(1)
Textural Paint Additives
147(5)
Aging Effects of the Paint Layer
152(25)
Nondestructive Examination of the Paint Layer
177(37)
Chardin's Three Soap Bubbles: X-Ray Studies Draw a Blank
194(3)
Varying Questions of EI Greco: Working Procedure, Iconography, Art Theory
197(3)
Determining the Status of Constable's White Horse Sketch
200(3)
Mondrian's Tableau No. IV: An Earlier State Lost and Found
203(3)
Perspective Lines in Carpaccio's Hunting on the Lagoon: Guides to a Reconstruction
206(4)
Changing Means to Study Velazquez' Evolving Technique
210(4)
The Varnish Layer
214(28)
The Physical and Aesthetic Function of the Varnish Layer
215(2)
The Composition of Varnishes
217(1)
Aging of the Varnish Layer
218(2)
Examination of the Varnish Layer with Natural Light
220(2)
Examination of the Varnish Layer with Ultraviolet Light
222(1)
A Famous Gossaert Rediscovered with the Help of Ultraviolet Studies
223(1)
Has the Painting Been Varnished?
223(7)
Varnish on Early Panels
230(1)
Nineteenth-Century Darkening Glazes and Tinted Varnishes
231(2)
Nineteenth-and Twentieth-Century Opposition to Varnishing
233(7)
Paint on Top of the Varnish Layer
240(2)
Beyond the Painting
242(18)
Labels and Collectors' Marks
242(4)
On Framing
246(8)
Viewing Conditions and Lighting
254(6)
Appendix 1: Pigment Identification 260(2)
Appendix 2: Paintings in Exemplary Condition in Public Collections 262(5)
Notes 267(20)
Bibliography 287(25)
Glossary 312(5)
Index 317(11)
Photography Credits 328

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