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Re: Illumination pigments

You are likely dealing with a copper green; can't be so certain about
the blue.

Take a look at Ralph Mayer's _The Artist's Handbook_ (numerous editions)
and you will learn a fair amount about early pigments.  Also, pay attention
to the bibliographic citations and look them up; they can teach you alot.

As you are in Austin, you might wish to talk with Cheryl Carrabba, a
paper conservator there. Phone number: 452-5880.

The damage is caused by acid; if the damage is severe enough, the maps
should be treated and possibly lined.  Again, talk with Cheryl.


>Hello all,
>   I am restoring an atlas whose maps have been carefully hand-colored.
>    The problem is that some of pigments, especially the greens and
>blues, have affected the paper in a way that is very similar in appearance
>and texture as paper affected by acid migration (browned and embrittled, as
>in pastedowns over leather turn-ins). However, I can't be sure that high
>acidity is the culprit: the colors are soluble in water, and the pH testers
>I know of all involve the use of liquid water.
>    Does anyone out there know what these pigments (or their binders)
>might be, and if this is in fact a problem of acidity?
>    The atlas was printed in 1824, in Augsburg, from plates engraved
>by cartographer Johannes Walch.
>    I'd be grateful for any direction at all...
>   Bill Cotter
>    Milou Bindery
>     Austin, TX

Thompson Conservation Lab.
7549 N. Fenwick
Portland, OR  97217

503/735-3942 (voice/fax)


"The lyfe so short; the craft so long to lerne"
        Chaucer, Parlement of Foules, 1386

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