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Saturday, June 2 • 10:30am - 11:00am
(Book and Paper) Édouard Manet’s Pastels on Canvas Supports

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Édouard Manet (1832 – 1883) is celebrated as an accomplished painter and draughtsman, equally conversant with canvas, oil paint and brush as he was pen and ink. From the perspective of materiality, his pastels, particularly those executed on primed canvases, stand at the intersection of these two disciplines. Relying on analysis carried out for an ambitious online scholarly catalogue, this talk compares and contrasts two of these works, Man with a Dog and Portrait of Alphonse Maureau, and discusses the adoption of paintings conservation techniques to stabilize the artworks for storage and display. Both works are portraits in the collection of the Prints and Drawings Department at the Art Institute of Chicago. Although dissimilar as portraits, the works are strikingly similar in terms of materials and techniques. Examination of the works indicates that Manet borrowed heavily from his knowledge of painting practice. Notable technical analysis included thread count and weave match analysis, which demonstrate that the supports were cut from the same bolt of cloth, likely a commercially prepared canvas. Unfortunately, the canvases are significantly undulated and the ground does not provide adequate purchase for the layers of unfixed pastel, and thus there is media loss throughout both artworks. The second part of this lecture details how paper conservation staff have used padded inserts, similar to those used for oil paintings, to fill the recesses created by the stretcher from the verso to provide an even support and cushioning to the slack canvases, and to reduce or eliminate vibration. The Édouard Manet online scholarly catalogue is available through the Art Institute of Chicago’s Conservation web page or through the following address: https://publications.artic.edu/manet/reader/manetart/section/140020.

avatar for Christine Conniff-O'Shea

Christine Conniff-O'Shea

Assistant Conservator for Preparation and Framing, The Art Institute of Chicago
Christine (Chris) Conniff-O'Shea holds a B.A in Fine Arts from the University of New Mexico where she studied drawing and printmaking. Chris is known for her specialized knowledge of historic mounting practices and modes for works of art on paper and the creative adaption of the same... Read More →
avatar for Rachel Freeman

Rachel Freeman

Associate Paper Conservator, The Art Institute of Chicago
Rachel Freeman graduated with a BA from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College (1991) and an MA with a certificate in advanced study in conservation from Buffalo State, SUNY (2004). Rachel's conservation training internships and fellowships include time spent at Heugh-Edmondson Conservation... Read More →

avatar for Don Johnson

Don Johnson

Professor, Rice University
Don H. Johnson is the J.S. Abercrombie Professor Emeritus of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Rice University, Houston, Texas. He received his undergraduate and graduate degrees in electrical engineering, all from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He joined M.I.T. Lincoln... Read More →

Saturday June 2, 2018 10:30am - 11:00am MDT
Texas Ballroom D Marriott Marquis Houston
  6. Specialty Session, Book and Paper