Complex methods are used to study works of visual art. These methods
include stylistic and historical analysis, as well as the analysis of
data obtained with the help of physicochemical methods of research.
study of artistic methods and specific characteristics of the composition,
the use of color, and the artist’s style, and specific changes in the state
the preservation of the base, primed layer, front-facing surface, brushwork,
character of strokes and lines, the comparison of these with the references
of the works (i.e., documented and authentic) are supplemented by data from
technological research, such as radiography, reflected ultraviolet
photography, visible luminescence under ultraviolet rays, infrared spectrum
research, x-ray fluorescence analysis, etc., which accurately tell us about
the true preservation state of the work and allows us to develop an optimal
program for conservation work based on the information we receive.
biochemical study of a work of art is primarily aimed at a comprehensive
study of the composition and properties of the materials from which the
piece was created. These studies allow the conservator to determine more or
less exactly where the boundary between the authentic (i.e., done by the
artist) elements of a piece of art and later additions lies, and how to
choose the right solvents that will reinforce its structure. As a result of
these studies, the optimal strategy and tactics for preservation can be
developed. There is a wide spectrum of materials studied; it includes paper,
textiles, wood, stone, metal, minerals, and the organic substances that make
up paint. Thus, the methods used also vary widely. In particular, the
stratigraphy and the thickness of the paint layers, their transparency and
components are studied in thin sections of microscopic samples of materials
in transmitted polarized light magnified up to 1000 times.
study biological damage to artworks, which can potentially cause them
irreparable harm, and then develop the optimal method for dealing with them.