JAIC 1986, Volume 25, Number 1, Article 6 (pp. 57 to 58)
JAIC online
Journal of the American Institute for Conservation
JAIC 1986, Volume 25, Number 1, Article 6 (pp. 57 to 58)


Editor's Note: This letter, received shortly after the publication of the article by Keyser, was unfortunately omitted from the last issue of the Journal.

1.1 To the Editor:

One cannot expect a nine-page article, Barbara W. Keyser's “Restraint Without Stress, History and Prospects: A Literature Review of Paintings as Structures” (JAIC, Vol. 24, No. 1, 1984) to cover so large a field as she did as fully as a Master's thesis, let alone a Doctoral dissertation, yet I feel that mention should have been made of some work in the field which she did not give full acknowledgement.

1. Richard D. Buck should have been credited with pioneering work at the ICOM Committee for Conservation Working Group on lining and Stretchers, later to become the Group on Structural Reinforcement of Paintings. Not only did he apply his insight to the care of canvas paintings but also developed solutions to their structural problems by introducing the first spring-loaded stretchers and honeycomb panels as solid supports.

2. The work of Frimmel, Dr. Eibner, Dr. Brachert, Straub and Doerner should have been referred to because they contain important information which still has bearing on current research.

3. My own work, although referred to, goes back to 1965 with my paper “A Vacuum Envelope for Treating Panel Paintings” (Studies in Conservation, Vol. 10, No. 1, 1965). It was the first significant improvement of the hot table, which Gerry Hedley used as a basis for his important improvements in vacuum lining. My own research on strain and stress in canvas paintings led to the development of BEVA. In my article, “Testing Adhesives for the Consolidation of Paintings” (Ibid. Vol. 17, No.4, 1972) the effects of uneven stress propagation as a cause of distortion in paintings are first demonstrated.

4. Mention should have been made of Prof. William H. Russell of Georgia Tech, a structural engineer and materials scientist, and his important research on problems of stress in canvas paintings, as presented to the IIC Washington Congress (1982). Direct, actual measurements, such as his, may lead some day to the development of a realistic and serviceable mathematical model of the behavior of canvas paintings.

Gustav A.BergerEditor's Note: The following two letters in response to articles recently published in the Journal were sent to and published in the Newsletter. While the Editor has no objection whatsoever to the Newsletter publishing such clarifications, which reach their intended readers more quickly than they would in the Journal, she still believes it useful to publish them also in the Journal. The Journal is often retained when the Newsletter, a more topical publication, is discarded. Also, the two publications are often shelved separately, and the reader of one would not have ready access to the back issues of the other.

1.1 To the Editor:

In the last AIC Journal (no. 2, Spring 1985), an interesting and scholarly article by Y. Wang and A.P. Schniewind appeared (Consolidation of Deteriorated Wood With Soluble Resins), which needs a comment.

While I laud the valiant efforts of the two researchers and in general agree with their conclusions, I wish to point out that the latest findings have been left out (probably because there is a considerable lead-time for the publication of articles in the Journal and this article obviously was written before the Think Tank of the AIC Wood Artifacts Group reached its conclusions). We deem it very important to state that ANY consolidation of deteriorated wood with resins, even those carried out with soluble thermoplastic polymers, should be undertaken ONLY AS A LAST RESORT. The Think Tank, in which Dr. Schniewind participated and with whose conclusions he agreed, expressed grave doubts that resins are truly redissoluble once they have been introduced into wood and that there are still other—reversible—techniques useful for the consolidation of deteriorated wood. In addition, several other objections were found to be operational, which will be brought out in a forthcoming report.

Even the most erudite theoretical considerations of a conservation problem needs the addition of the views of the practitioner. Eight of the nine participants in the Think Tank are practicing conservators with a lot of experience.


1.1 To the Editor:

The sole distributor of Lascaux adhesives and other products in the United States and Canada is Lascaux Conservation Materials, Ltd/Fine Arts Stretcher, P.O. Box 380, 1064 62nd Street, Brooklyn, NY 11219, (718) 238-5151.

I mistakenly attributed the source of Lascaux 360 H.V. adhesive to Conservation Materials, Ltd., Sparks, NV in the article, “THE QUANTITATIVE TESTING AND COMPARISONS OF PEEL AND LAP/SHEAR FOR LASCAUX 360 H.V. AND BEVA 371”, which appeared in Vol. 24, Number 2, Spring, 1985 of the Journal of the American Institute for Conservation.

Kenneth B.Katz

Copyright 1986 American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works