Gels Cleaning Research (1998-2003)
 
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Private Conservator Chris Stavroudis applies a gel formulation to a section of a painting as part of a weeklong cleaning experiment at CSUN in November 1998 (see Component One). The painting, which had been vandalized, was donated to the Winterthur/University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation for research purposes. Photo Dusan Stulik.

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Getty Museum paintings conservator and project team member Mark Leonard cleans test sections from the painting with solvents and solvent mixtures commonly used for cleaning painted surfaces as part of Component Four. Photo: Dusan Stulik.

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Samples are punched from the surface of cleaned sections and placed in vials. Photo: Valerie Dorge.

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Scintillation cocktail is added and the vials are placed in a scintillation counter for measurement of radioactivity. Photo: Dusan Stulik.

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In a cleaning experiment similar to that carried out on the painting sections, gel is applied to sections of four materials commonly found in three-dimensional objects in museum collections-plaster, marble, terracotta and gilded wood. Samples of these materials are scintillation counted in a manner similar to the painting samples. Photo: Dusan Stulik.

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Here, a gel is applied to a marble section. The sample lines are marked on the cleaning surface to guide gel application. Photo: Valerie Dorge.

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Individual samples are carefully separated from the marble section without disturbing the surface area. The samples are then placed in the vial with scintillation cocktail in the Beckman counter. Photo: Herant Khanjian.

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Former GCI associate scientist and project team member Narayan Khandekar takes a sample from The Farewell of Telemachus and Eucharis by Jacques-Louis David (from the J. Paul Getty Museum collection) for sampling by pyrolysis-gas chromatography. Sampling of the surfaces of paintings that have been cleaned in the past using the gel systems were analyzed for possible residues as part of Component Three of this project. Photo: Herant Khanjian.

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A tube containing the paint sample is inserted into the pyroprobe prior to pyrolysis-gas chromatography analysis in order to determine the amount of gel residue detectable on the paint. Photo: Herant Khanjian.