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George Roberts Barratt

George Henry Harlow

George Roberts Barratt, 18th Century

Oil on Canvas


18th century English portraitist, George Henry Harlow, received limited training as an artist, but achieved fame after traveling to Italy where he studied the Old Masters extensively. He was elected an Academician of Merit of the Accedemia di San Luca in Rome after painting a full-size copy of Raphael’s Transfiguration in a quick eighteen days. Harlow’s work is marked by his sharp, technical ability and speed. 

Condition of the Artwork (2009):

Ultra violet light reveals that his black, jacket collar and some of the shadows in the coat near it, have been heavily repainted during a previous restoration; this repaint is on top of much of the natural resin layers. There are also large areas of repaint in his jacket along the bottom edge, but these are older, and are under some layers of the old varnish, which glow quite green under UV light. Close inspection reveals fine many abrasions to his jacket. 

Conservation Treatment Proposed: 

  • Remove/reduce grime with the appropriate cleaning agents.
  • Thin the varnish overall as much as safely possible. It is very likely that the varnish layers cannot be completely removed because paintings from this period are often sensitive to cleaning agents.
  • Remove/reduce poorly matched overpaint on his collar with the appropriate cleaning agents.
  • Apply a thin, isolating layer of a conservation quality varnish overall.
  • Fill and inpaint paint losses and abrasions with conservation quality materials.
  • Apply a conservation quality finish varnish overall.
  • All materials used will be appropriate and conservation quality. All work will adhere to the highest standards of the field. 

Estimated Cost of Treatment:  $4,000.00