Lecture 18

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Classics 456   Dr. Soren

Greek and Roman Painting and Mosaics


                             Lecture 18:  The Mirobriga Project


A. True Fresco

   l. Mix pigments with water binder while water like greenware

   2. Inch below surface-- absorption

   3. Microscopic crystalline film

   4. Calcium hydrate- wet plaster

   5. Carbon dioxide and Calcium Carbonate on surface

   6. Plaster of lime, water and sand

   7. Binders- oil, varnish, turpentine, water, avoid powdering


B. Fresco Secco

   l. Egg, oil or glue binder on dry wall

   2. Poor quality

   3. Intonaco- calcium oxide and sand

   4. Roughen- ariccio (aricciare)

   5. Sinopie


C. Selim Augusti- Pompeiana 1950 and Bolletino d'arte

   l. 18th century protection- beeswax diluted with benzine

   2. Calcium Carbonate is caustic-can harm colors, must

       neutralize with soap and

       coat with wax

   3. Vitruvius says marble dust used

   4. Colors used- black charcoal, chalk white, red iron oxide,

      yellow ochre, blue lapis

      lazuli, green malachite and copper

  1. Application of Science in Examination of Works of Art Boston, 1967


D. Removing a Painting from a wall

   l. Linen on wall with shellack diluted by alcohol

   2. Put on new cloth with calcium caseate and fix to pine

      wood frame    

   3. ICCROM

   4. Istituto Centrale del Restauro


E. The Mirobriga Project – David Soren and the Winterthur Museum, Harry Lange

   l. Two layers- plaster support and paint

   2. Troweling

   3. Vitruvius- 3 coats of rough sand mortar, 3 of marble dust

      mortar for firmness,

      strength and resistance to cracking

   4.Red ochre is iron oxide, yellow hydrated iron oxide,

      green is hydrosilicate of iron, magnesium, aluminum

      and potassium



   5.Black is carbon, white is fine ground calcium carbonate,

      pink is red ochre and fine ground calcium carbonate

For a view of the PowerPoint for this lecture click here.