BAPCR Christmas Card 2014 vignetted

The BAPCR Council and The Picture Restorer editorial team would like to wish you a very merry Christmas and happy 2015!


BAPCR Evening talk and Christmas party

Portrait Miniatures

Alan Derbyshire – Materials, Techniques and Conservation of Portrait Miniatures

Friday 5th December 2014 Art Workers’ Guild, 6 Queens’ Square, London, WC1N 3AT Doors 6pm / Talk 6.30pm, followed by drinks and buffet

The BAPCR looks forward to welcoming all members, their guests and non-members to the Art Workers’ Guild for our the BAPCR evening talk by Alan Derbyshire who will present: Materials, Techniques and Conservation of Portrait Miniatures. The BAPCR Christmas Party will follow the talk.

Alan Derbyshire graduated with a B.Sc. in Physics from U.M.I.S.T before going on to study Paper Conservation at Gateshead Technical College. Alan is Head of Paper, Books and Paintings Conservation at the Victoria and Albert Museum. He specialises in the conservation of portrait miniatures and has written, taught and lectured extensively on their conservation. Articles on portrait miniatures include ‘Pigment Analysis of Portrait Miniatures Using Raman Microscopy’ Journal of Raman Spectroscopy No. 30 1999; ‘Developments in the field of Portrait Miniature Conservation’ A.Derbyshire, N.Frayling and C.Ronnerstam. Restauratorenblätter 21 pp 53-61 2000 and ‘Sixteenth – century portrait miniatures: key methodologies for a holistic approach’ A.Derbyshire, T.Tallian, N.Frayling, in ‘Art of the Past Sources and Reconstructions’ Archetype Publications, London, 2005.


Florence Fair

Art and Restoration Fair in Florence

The fourth International Art and Restoration Fair in Florence will take place from 13 to 15 November 2014 at the Fortezza da Basso Exhibition Centre. It will be an event of extremely high relevance for the restoration, conservation and preservation of our cultural heritage.


Florence, the Capital of Culture and City of Art and Restoration will once again be home to the fourth edition of the Art and Restoration Fair. The Fair will bring together over 300 institutions, private companies, schools and training organizations – active in the restoration, conservation and enhancement of cultural heritage – engaging in education and cultural events. The Fair aims to provide opportunities to meet, network with and learn from the commerical, scientific and cultural -national and international- players. It will be a platform for the development of industry, research and new project initiatives in the field of restoration.

This year’s Fair will be bigger and better than previous events with more scientific and cultural activities as part of the programme. Over 20,000 visitors are expected and high profile, national and international delegates have already confirmed attendance. In collaboration with ICE International Trade Institute and ICOMOS, the Fair is organising B2B meetings for networking between Italian and international companies on Saturday 15 November. As a result of the above efforts, EXPO Milano 2015 are now amongthe list of patrons.

If you require more information please the website at www.salonerestaurofirenze.org.



National Gallery Conference

Rembrandt Now: Technical Practice, Conservation and Research

13-15 November 2014, Sainsbury Wing Lecture Theatre, National Gallery , London


A three-day scholarly conference on Rembrandt’s technical practice for painting has been organised by the National Gallery to coincide with the exhibition on Rembrandt’s late career, ‘Rembrandt: The Late Works’. The exhibition is co-organised with the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam and will transfer there early in 2015.

The conference is designed for art historians, scholars and curators of Rembrandt and Dutch art generally in museums, collections and universities; conservators and scientists interested in the technical history of painting; and specialists in the scientific and technical examination of works of art.

The Conference will present research under seven themes:

  • Rembrandt’s Early Work
  • Conservation and Discovery
  • New Techniques/Technologies of Examination of Paintings (as applied to Rembrandt)
  • Rembrandt’s Painting Materials
  • Technical Interpretation of Key Works by Rembrandt
  • The Theory of Rembrandt’s Methods and Contemporary Practice
  • Research-Led Documentation on Rembrandt.

It is particularly timely to consider the results of technical research on Rembrandt, since many researchers around the world, particularly in Europe, the UK and the United States, have turned fresh eyes and, recently, newer technologies to Rembrandt studies.

At the same time a number of important conservation treatments of paintings by Rembrandt have been carried out in collections around the world in the last five years, and the revelations brought about by the cleaning of these paintings will be of great interest to the Rembrandt scholarly and curatorial community.

Please visit the National Gallery webpages for all information including a full program of speakers and to book tickets.

Tickets £285. The fee will include an evening reception at the Gallery, and a morning private view of the exhibition.


retouching conference

2nd International Meeting on Retouching of Cultural Heritage, RECH2

In October 24 – 25, 2014 will be held at Casa das Artes, in the City of Porto (Portugal), the 2nd International Meeting on Retouching of Cultural Heritage

The RECH2 Meeting, hosted by the Escola Artística e Profissional Árvore. The official language is English.

The main focus will be to promote the exchange of ideas, concepts, terminology, methods, techniques and materials applied to the retouching process in different areas of conservation: mural painting, easel painting, sculpture, graphic documentation, architecture, plasterwork, photography and contemporary art, among others. This two day meeting will be divided in three sessions: Retouching: theory and teaching methods; Case studies concerning immovable and movable heritage; New technologies: applicability in conservation and in the study and documentation of the retouching process.  Please click here to see the papers and the programme of the conference.  Attention: PREVIOUS REGISTRATION IS NECESSARY

BAPCR Edinburgh visit – 21st November 2014


BAPCR members are invited to join an extended visit to Edinburgh on Friday 21st November 2014.


Two private tours have been arranged at the National Galleries of Scotland with their conservators – the first visit is to the Conservation departments which are located at the Gallery of Modern Art and the second is to the recently conserved and reinstalled collection at Scottish National Portrait Gallery.

There will also be a chance to see the displays at both museums with fellow BAPCR members and take part in other optional arranged activities on the trip including a meal in Edinburgh’s scenic port of Leith on Thursday evening, dinner on Friday evening and, later, a night of dancing and live music at one of Edinburgh’s most popular ceilidhs. Those wishing to stay for the weekend can visit other collections and Edinburgh’s beautiful Christmas markets.

The cost per member for the private tours is £35.00 which includes a donation to the National Galleries, a specially prepared travel pack with suggestions for accommodation, City riverside walks, visits to galleries and historical sites such as Rosslyn Chapel, cream teas, cocktails, whiskey tastings and more. Please note that meals, travel and accommodation are not included in the ticket price. We hope that members can join us for what promises to be a most delightful and stimulating trip which will offer a chance to meet fellow conservators from other parts of the UK and also a chance to gain an insight into conservation practice at the National Galleries of Scotland.

The maximum number for the tours is 15 people. Please book early to avaiod disappointment.  R.S.V.P to the Secretary Gemma Collins by 26th September to confirm attendance.

The BAPCR Council


Itinerary for the trip:

Thursday 20th November
Arrival and informal dinner in the scenic port of Leith.

Friday 21st November
10:00 Meet at the front entrance hall of the Gallery of Modern Art One, Belford Road. Coffee in the café and / or view the exhibition, Generation: a celebration of the last 25 years of Scottish Art

11.30 Tour of the National Galleries of Scotland’s Conservation departments, including Paper, Painting and Frames Conservation.

1:00 Travel to the Scottish National Portrait Gallery (SNPG), Queen Street, for lunch in the beautiful café

2.30 – 4:00 Focussed tour of the SNPG by NGS Conservation staff. This magnificent Arts and Crafts building was designed by the architect, Rowand Anderson in the 1890s as the first purpose-built portrait gallery in the world. Between 2009 and 2011 the building underwent an extensive renovation project with the aim of reinstating as far as possible, the original appearance of the building while adding 21st Century facilities for both collections and visitors. Three specific aspects of this exciting project will be discussed; firstly, the conservation of William Hole’s splendid painted mural scheme, ceiling and frieze in the Great Hall carried out with a large group of overseas and UK conservation students; secondly, the pioneering passive control system adopted to manage the building’s environment; and thirdly, the installation of an automated retrieval system for the printroom collections. After the tour there will be a chance to view the permanent collection.

7:30 Meet for drinks, 8:00 meet for dinner (venue tbc)

10:00 Ceilidh visit. Bring your dancing shoes or enjoy a wee dram with colleagues at the bar at one of the Capital’s most popular ceilidh evenings. Tartan is optional!

Saturday 22nd November
11:00 Meet at National Gallery of Scotland, the Mound, to view the permanent collection then mulled wine at the nearby magical German Christmas Market



Sophie Plender MBE


A hearty CONGRATULATIONS to Sophie Plender on being awarded an MBE for services to the arts in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list! Sophie, BAPCR member and one time Council Member said “It was a complete surprise!” At the BAPCR meeting on the 9th July Chair Pippa Balch led the congratulations as assembled members applauded her achievement.

Notification of the honour was published on 14th June in the London Gazette with Sophie listed as ‘Painting Conservator and Restorer. For services to the Arts.’

Sophie is known for her work at the National Portrait Gallery, The Dulwich Picture Gallery and in her own studio, but she spoke to The Picture Restorer in 2011 about her whole career which started with her training at the Courtauld Institute. (The Picture Restorer, Issue 38).


 Sophie at the BAPCR 'Ripping Yarns' Conference in 2011

Sophie at the BAPCR ‘Ripping Yarns’ Conference in 2011


BAPCR AGM and Evening Talk

(c) Norfolk Museums & Archaeology Service (Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery); Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

(c) Norfolk Museums & Archaeology Service (Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery); Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

Rose Miller – John Sell Cotman and John Crome: Material Sensibilities

Wednesday 9th July 2014
Art Workers’ Guild, 6 Queens’ Square, London, WC1N 3AT
Doors 6.30, AGM 7.00pm, talk at 7.30pm

BAPCR members Free / Non-members £10 on the door




The BAPCR looks forward to welcoming you at the Art Workers’ Guild for our AGM and evening talk by Rose Miller.

John Sell Cotman and John Crome: Material Sensibilities   Research has shown that these masters of British landscape had a particular understanding of their painting materials and methods. Cotman and Crome’s common use of coarse or recycled materials often resulted in paintings that show a disregard for the decorum of surface, but their paintings are not simply the result of poverty and homemade brushes (as previously perceived). They were skillfully manipulating their materials, and with them, exploring their material surroundings – their landscape.

This talk will explore two phenomena, the presence of drying cracks in the oil paintings of Cotman, and the visual effect of open weave canvas in those by Crome. It will suggest that what could be read as drying problems should in some cases be seen as drying effects, and what might appear to be varnish residues caught in the troughs of the canvas is an intentional visual device. CO-TMP drying cracks

Rose Miller studied conservation of easel paintings at the Courtauld (2005-08) before an internship at the Hamilton Kerr Institute (2009-11). This talk results from research that started as her Courtauld student project, and was further pursued in a curatorial research project (2011-13), funded by the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, based at the Hamilton Kerr Institute and in collaboration with Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery. She now works in private studios in London.

Entry is free of charge to members of the BAPCR, and £10 for non-members. Wine and soft drinks will be available to purchase before and after the talk.

It will be possible to join the BAPCR at the door. Benefits include free entrance to BAPCR talks and discounted entry to BAPCR conferences and workshops, plus the excellent journal The Picture Restorer twice yearly.

Associate membership £55/Student membership £20 (free for first year).
Please email Gemma Collins, BAPCR Secretary  if you know you will be attending the talk so we can buy enough wine and soft drinks.