Dimensions: 297 x 210 mm
Illustrations: 208 colour
Three hundred conservators, conservation scientists, curators, art historians, and students from twenty-two countries assembled at The Art Institute of Chicago in October 1999 for a conference entitled The Broad Spectrum: The Art and Science of Conserving Colored Media on Paper. Drawing on their wide range of expertise, participants expressed their varied approaches to the investigation and custodianship of art in the papers published in this volume. A consideration of the materials and techniques of coloured media on paper, The Broad Spectrum is also an exploration of the meaning and interpretation of artworks.
An array of media, as employed in different historical periods and cultural contexts, is brought under intense and diligent scructiny. A historical survey of pastel and chalk is presented alongside fascinating case studies and recommendations for transport, storage, and display. Watercolor and ink are examined through essays on individual artists such as Durer, Turner, Cezanne, and Homer, and through a brief history of paper-making. Modern materials are discussed including distemper, fluorescent paint, and ink jet printers. Challenges posed by traditional Asian art forms are explained, and considerations of the issue of fading - its measurement and prevention - conclude the volume.
Exquisitely and amply illustrated with high-quality reproductions in color and black and white, The Broad Spectrum is a collaborative triumph. This volume, which presents empirical research together with sensitive analyses of data and pictures, promises to inspire future research, and prompt further inter-disciplinary efforts among specialists - all the while enhancing the art-viewing experiences of wider audiences.
This volume represents a unique collection of expertise and will be of interest to art historians and curators as well as researchers, practitioners and students of conservation.
The Broad Spectrum is a handsome volume; rarely have conference papers read so well or looked so good. It is also an important book. It documents an incipient change in the field of paper conservation and distinguishes us all by the scholarship it contains. Buy one for yourself, and one for an art historian you want to impress.
Journal of the American Institute for Conservation 43(1) (2004) 121-123