Glossary

A-C     D-F     G-I     L-M     O-R     S-T     U-Z

 

Condition

A-C

ACID BURN - Brown discoloration on paper, resulting from acidic matting or mounting materials.

ADHESIVE FAILURE - Occurs when the adhesive deteriorates to the point of collapse. Can be found in works on paper.

BIOLOGICAL DEGRADATION - Any interruption in the original material due to current or previous biological infestation or insect damage, such a holes or remaining dust like material.

BLOOM - An appearance of cloudy or dull spotting on a painting’s varnished surface as a result of exposure to moisture.

BOWING - Bending of a surface.

BRITTLE CANVAS - Tough or hard surface usually susceptible to cracking.

BROKEN | CHIPPED | SEPARATED ELEMENT - A broken element is part of an item that has been fractured into two or more parts. A separated element is part of an item that has been disconnected.

BROKEN | WEAK TACKING EDGE(S) - Weakness to the part of a canvas that wraps around the edges of the auxiliary support and that is held in place by tacks or staples.

BUCKLING | SLACK - A planar distortion caused by a canvas that has slackened on its stretcher, appearing as waves, ripples or bulges in the canvas.

CANVAS PATCH - A piece of canvas used when there is a break in fabric or other sheet material as a result of tension.

CANVAS RELINED - When the original canvas of a painting has been damaged or weakened, the piece is removed from its stretchers, backed in linen or canvas, and placed on its original stretchers or on new ones.

CANVAS RE-STRETCHED - When the original canvas of a painting has been tightened on its original stretchers, or taken off of its original stretchers and placed on new ones.

CANVAS STRIPLINING - A type of lining where Canvas fabric is adhered along the canvas tacking margin to reinforce weak and split fabric.

CHECK - A partial split in the woods grain. Occurs when there is uneven shrinkage, which most commonly extends across the rings of annual growth. These lengthwise separations usually result from stress due to air or kiln-drying.

CORROSION | PITTING - Corrosion is a chemical reaction between a material (usually metal) and its environment, which produces a deterioration of the material's properties. In some instances, corrosion can occur in a small or confined area in the form of pits on a metal surface. Pitting is an extreme, concentrated attack on a material which may take months, or even years, to become visible.

CRACKLE | CRAQUELURE - A network of cracks in a fine, overall pattern on the surface of a painting, usually a result of embrittlement of paint film due to age, climate change or by shrinking of the paint or varnish

CRAZING - The phenomenon that produces a network of fine cracks on the surface of a material, for example in a glaze layer.

CREASE(S) - Occur when a material has been folded or bent, creating a line or ridge on the surface without breaking or tearing.

CROPPING - The removal of unwanted areas from a photographic or illustrated image.

CUPPING - Aged paint, loosened by cracking, with edges curling to create cup-like formations.

D-F

DAMAGED STRETCHER BARS | STRAINERS - A structural distortion of the support whereby the support has become twisted, turned or bent out of shape, causing a planar distortion.

DELAMINATING - A separation of the layers of the ground, paint or varnish layers.

DETERIORATION | WEAR | SPOIL - Any reduction of quality, use or aesthetics due to physical impairment.

DISCOLORATIONS - Changes of hue or value, often having uneven distribution and plainly detrimental to the prevailing tone relations.

DISINTEGRATING - To undo the integrity of, break into parts.

DRIP(S) | SPLATTER - Dried droplets or splashes of foreign material.

FADING - Loss of color through exposure to light, heat, or other agents.

FIBERGLASS PATCH - A piece of fiberglass used when there is a break in fabric or other sheet material as a result of tension.

FIBERGLASS STRIPLINING - A type of lining where fiberglass is adhered along the canvas tacking margin to reinforce weak and split fabric.

FINGERPRINTS - A fingerprint is an impression left by the friction ridges of a human finger.

FIRE DAMAGE - A deposit of partially combusted material, usually accompanied by an odor; generally resulting from an open flame or residue from a fireplace or a building fire.

FLATTENED (EXCESSIVE HEAT OR PRESSURE)  - When the paint layer has been compressed resulting in the flattening of the surface most noticeably in any areas of impasto.

FLY SPECKS - The bodily waste discharged by flies. Fresh specks can be cleaned off with moistened cotton swabs; however, aged specks can not be cleaned off at all.

FOXING - An age-related process of deterioration that causes spots and reddish-brown staining on old paper documents.

FRAME RUBBING - A certain amount of pressure and friction between the frame and the surface, ie.canvas, causing damage to the surface.

G-I

GAUZE | MESH PATCH - A piece of gauze or mesh used when there is a break in fabric or other sheet material as a result of tension.

GAUZE | MESH STRIPLING - A type of lining where Gauze/Mesh fabric is adhered along the canvas tacking margin to reinforce weak and split fabric.

GESSO - A white paint mixture consisting of a binder mixed with chalk, gypsum, pigment, or any combination of these. It is used in artwork as a preparation for any number of substrates such as wood panels, canvas and sculpture as a base for paint and other materials that are applied over it.

GLUE - Any sticky adhesive substance.

GOUGE(S) - The damage caused when material has been removed or dug out of a painting’s surface, support, auxiliary support, frame or another element of the artwork. A large break in fabric as a result of impact.

HINGING - Hinge-free mounting is a non-invasive method of securing prints, drawings, or photographs into a mat without applying adhesives or tapes directly to the artwork.

HOLES | TEARS - A break in fabric or other sheet material as a result of tension.

IMAGE CUT DOWN - Image cut down from it's original size.

IMPRESSION - An imprint or mark produced by pressing

INDENTATIONS  - Any chip, dent, bump, gouge, tear, abrasion, or loss occurring from force.

INPAINT - Paint applied over losses only. This is a technique commonly used by conservators to unify a painting that has suffered paint loss.

INSTAINING - Application of stain, typically to a wooden surface, in the area of a loss to re-establish an item's visual continuity.

INSECT DAMAGE TO SUPPORT - Can be seen by tunneling in the wooden stretchers.

O-R

ORIGINAL CONDITION - Untouched, never cleaned or worked on in any way.

OVERCLEANED - Original paint is removed due to excessive cleaning. Also known as skinned.

OVERPAINT - Often a result of poor restoration, the repainting is extended beyond the boundaries defined by the damage.

PAINT DRIP(S) | SPLATTER - A spot or trail of paint splashed over a surface of a painting.

PAINT LOSS - The absence of paint in areas where it was previously located, due to age and other influences.

PAINT SEPARATION - Also known as lifting, separation of the paint layer from the substrate (ground or canvas in this case), often resulting in distortion or loss of paint.

PAPER PATCH - Small piece of paper used to mend a tear or puncture through application, (usually adhesion), to rear of the canvas.

PAPER STRIPLINING - A type of lining where paper is adhered along the canvas tacking margin to reinforce weak and split fabric.

PATINA - The result of natural or artificial oxidation on a surface, which produces corrosion, texture, or a thin layer of color that can range in hue. In bronze sculpture, patina specifically refers to the alteration of the surface by the sculptor with acid or other chemicals.

POLYESTER STRIPLINING - A type of lining where polyester fabric is adhered along the canvas tacking margin to reinforce weak and split fabric.

PRESSURE CRACKS - A failure of material caused by pressure/stress.

PUNCTURE(S) - A small hole through a painting.

REMAINS OF HINGES - Works on paper, prints, and photographs are often attached to a mat with paper hinges and a chemically neutral, non-staining, and permanent adhesive. Each hinge is attached to the piece and the back board, allowing easy removal from the board should the necessity arise.

REPURPOSED - An item that has been repurposed no longer performs its original function, and retains only aesthetic value.

RETOUCHING - Editing photographic imagery

RESTORATION - The process of halting the decay of a work of art and/or returning it to its original state.

RIPPLED PAPER - When environmental influences cause disruptions, ridges, or buckling of paper.

S-T

SCRATCH(ES) - Often resulting in a loss on the surface, extending to the paint and ground layers, caused by faulty cleaning, a sharp object, friction as well as where the frame touches the painted surface.

SEPARATION - Disconnection between two previously attached layers of a structure. For example, when varnish peels from the surface to which it was applied.

SKINNED - When overcleaning has removed original paint. Occurs when a piece has experienced exorbitant intervention from a restorer or conservationist, removing a portion of the original media.

SMUDGES - Blemishes or smears.

SOOT - An airborne contaminant in the environment has many different sources, all of which are results of some form of pyrolysis. indoor environment sources such as smoking of plant matter, cooking, oil lamps, candles, quartz/halogen bulbs with settled dust, fireplaces, exhaust emissions from vehicles, and defective furnaces. Soot in very low concentrations is capable of darkening surfaces or making particle agglomerates, such as those from ventilation systems, appear black.

SPLIT(S) TO SUPPORT - Cracks developing in the paintings corners from overtightening the keys or other stresses.

STAINING ON REVERSE - Usually caused by water coming into contact with the canvas and subsequently drying.

STAINING ON SURFACE - A soiled or discolored appearance caused by a foreign substance or uneven aging.

STRETCHER BAR LINES - A line of cracks or deformation in a painting’s surface that follows along the inside edges of the stretcher or strainer bars.

STRIPLINING CORNERS ONLY - A type of lining where new fabric is adhered along the corners only to reinforce weak and split fabric.

SUPPORT FAILURE - Deteriorated surface, ie. canvas, which no longer has enough strength to support the painting.

SUPPORTS HAVE BEEN REPLACE | ALTERED - Evidence of an alteration in the supports.

SURFACE DIRT - Dirt of any kind which accumulates on the painting’s surface.

SURFACE ABRASIONS - Visible result of wearing, grinding, scratching, or tearing of a surface due to friction.

TACKING EDGES REMOVED - The removal of tacks from the outside edges of a stretched canvas through which tacks are originally inserted attaching it onto the stretcher.

TENTING - The delamination of the paint or ground along cracks where the delaminated layers lift into a pattern resembling tent formations.

TONING - Toning is the darkening or aging of paper over time, and exposure to humidity and the pollutants in the atmosphere. The toned area is surely acidic.

TRIMMED - When the margins of a two dimensional work of art have been reduced. Typically occurs during the framing process.

U-Z

UNKNOWN PATCH - Small piece of unknown material used to mend a tear or puncture through application, (usually adhesion), to rear of the canvas.

UNKNOWN STRIPLINING - A type of lining where unknown fabric is adhered along the canvas tacking margin to reinforce weak and split fabric.

UNSTABLE LINING OR BACKING - Unstable lining or backing.

UNSTRETCHED - A painting which has not been stretched on a rigid wooden frame.

UNVARNISHED - A painting which has not been treated with a varnish to protect the surface.

VARNISH DRIP(S) - Drips on the surface which dried after application of the varnish.

VARNISH-MATTE - Coating, (resins in oil or solvent) used primarily to protect the surface of the painting, non glossy surface, free from sheen

VARNISH-SATIN - Coating, (resins in oil or solvent) used primarily to protect the surface of a painting, usually low sheen.

VARNISH-SEMI-GLOSS - Coating, (resins in oil or solvent) used primarily to protect the surface of a painting, smooth and almost mirror-like surface when viewed from all angles.

VARNISH-GLOSS - Coating (resins in oil or solvent) used primarily to protect the surface of a painting smooth and almost mirror-like surface when viewed from all angles.

VERSO - Refers to the back or underside of a sheet of paper

WATER DAMAGE | WARPING - Includes any type of damage caused by contact with water or humidity such as staining, warping or loosening of material.

WAX DRIP(S) | SPLATTER - Drips or splatter on the surface which dried after application of the wax.

WAX VARNISH - Coating, wax varnish, used primarily to protect the surface of a painting, usually low sheen.

WRINKLING - Wrinkles or bulges which radiate from edges and corners of a stretched canvas caused by an inadequate stretcher.

YELLOWED - Natural or synthetic resin varnishes will become yellow (natural resin) or grayish (synthetic) as they age.

 

Surface

Material used to create the art object. See our entire list here

 

Substrate

What the surface material is applied to. See our entire list here