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Storage and Tips on Taking Care of Paintings

Storage оf paintings

  • Temperature and humidity conditions: 18-22°С with 40-70% humidity maximum.
  • Maximum illuminance: 150 lux.
  • Lamps with power of more than 100 candelas (100W incandescent light bulb or 20W fluorescent lamp) must be placed not closer than one meter from the painting (200 W - about 2 meters, etc.).
  • Direct sunlight is unacceptable.
  • Draughts and sudden changes of temperature and humidity are unacceptable.
  • It is advisable not to touch the paint layer.
  • Do not store paintings on and near heaters and under air-conditioners.
  • Ultraviolet and infrared radiations are highly undesirable.
  • Combustion products are very unfavorable: soot, tobacco smoke, oils emitted when cooking, etc.
  • Store paintings in the well ventilated area.

Tips on Taking Care of Paintings

  • Dust from the surface should be removed with the clean pad or glove made of velvet or flannel as these fabrics absorb the dust pretty well. The painted surface should be swept gently in one direction, with the minimal pressure. Don not use any brushes or brooms, even the soft ones, because you can scratch the painting surface, besides these tools do not absorb the dust but just disperse it in the air. If you start to sweep the painted surface with a moist rag or try to remove dust with vacuum cleaner it could cause severe damage to your painting.
  • The back side of the painting can be cleaned with the same pads and gloves, as well as with flat brash (short-bristle) or vacuum cleaner. The painting must be bent a bit during the process. Your movements on the canvas should be soft and smooth and the brush of the dust collector of the vacuum cleaner must not touch the surface at all. You can additionally protect your painting from dust by fully covering its back side with cardboard.
  • Don not try to clean the painting yourself if it is severely soiled. This is the job for an expert.
  • The stains of soot and carbon-black must be removed by a restorer only, so don not try to do it yourself.
  • If the canvas becomes sagged (you can see some folds or other irregularities) never moisten the back side of the canvas with water. This can cause the ground exfoliation. If you have a modular stretcher, tamp its wedges carefully. If the stretcher is solid then apply to the picture framing studio, as your painting needs to be reupholsted or you may just change your solid stretcher to a modular one.