Tuesday, December 20, 2016

A master work, the Ghent Altarpiece, reawakens stroke by stroke in Brussels

By Milan Schureuer
These interior wooden panels, featuring Adam and Eve (holding a citrus fruit), and the iconic “The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb,” have yet to be restored. For many years, the inside panels were only displayed on feast days. Credit Hugo Maertens, Lukas-Art in Flanders/St. Bavo Cathedra
BELGIUM---Layers and layers of paint have been virtually and physically removed from the 15th-century Ghent Altarpiece, a renowned work of biblical figures on wood panels, revealing for the first time in hundreds of years the individual brush strokes of the original paintings. In this first phase of restoration on one of the earliest art works to use oil paints on a large scale, new scanning techniques uncovered the singular skills of the Flemish brothers Jan and Hubert Van Eyck, beneath layers of overpainting and varnish. [link]
At the Museum of Fine Arts in Ghent, visitors were able to watch as restorers worked on individual panels. Credit Jean-Luc Elias/KIK-IRPA, Brussels