Conservation

 

Masterpieces by Gilbert Stuart and Anthony Van Dyck Return to the Galleries

March 21, 2002 to April 25, 2002

Gilbert Stuart was the foremost portrait painter of the newly formed United States. He painted many of the most prominent figures of his day, including the first five American presidents, but none of the thousand portraits he made attained such renown as the three he painted from life of George Washington and those he replicated to order throughout his later career. To most visitors to The Frick Collection, Stuart's George Washington is instantly recognizable; in a collection of mainly European masterpieces, it is the only painting of an American by an American.

The Portrait of Philip IV by Diego Rodríguez de Silva y Velázquez (1599-1660) returned recently from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, having been cleaned for the first time in more than sixty years. The treatment by Michael Gallagher, Sherman Fairchild Conservator in Charge of Paintings Conservation, revealed the dazzling original surface that had been veiled by a yellowing varnish.
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Two Rediscovered Tapestries

May 1, 2001 to September 9, 2001

In summer 2001, visitors enjoyed two eighteenth-century tapestries woven by the Brussels workshop of Peter van den Hecke (c. 1752). On display in the Music Room, these rare hangings are important for their state of preservation, the significance of their design, their royal provenance, and the evidence regarding the identity of their maker and manufacture. They depict scenes from Cervantes' novel Don Quixote de la Mancha, which proved to be an important literary source in the fields of fine and decorative arts for over two hundred years.

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