Brick House Fine Art Conservation

Fine Art Conservation

The studio offers a broad variety of remedial, preventative and restorative conservation treatments for paintings including:


Removal of surface dirt


Time and environment can cause layers of dirt to build up on the surface of a painting. Removal of dirt such as smoke, fingerprints and nicotine may assist with revealing the colours, fine detail or brushwork the artist originally intended to be seen.

Dirt found on the reverse of paintings may be detrimental to the painted layers on the front. It readily absorbs moisture and particles may become trapped between stretcher and canvas creating undesired surface undulations. The addition of a backing following treatment prevents the accumulation of dirt building up in the future.

Remove discoloured varnish layers

Traditionally, paintings were varnished with a natural resin varnish to saturate colours and protect the surface. However these are prone to darkening and turning yellow over time through the varying effects of light, heat and environment. This disguises the artists’ original colours and intentions. They may be carefully removed by a conservator. They are replaced with synthetic resins which have been formulated and tested by conservation scientists to minimise future degradation.

Repair torn and damaged paintings


The studio offers various techniques, materials and adhesives to sympathetically mend tears. This tear is being repaired by re-weaving linen threads and restoring the canvas tension as close to its pre-torn condition as possible. This intricate process is carried out under magnification using tweezers and a fine paintbrush to apply the adhesive.


Lining imparts strength to the original canvas. Less invasive, and preventative treatments are also available such as strip and dry lining.

Treat flaking and water damages

Historic labels

Canvas stamps or labels on the reverse may aid dating a painting and provide information on its historical provenance. The longevity of historic labels can be prolonged by careful treatment and protective measures.


A wide range of natural, traditional and modern synthetic materials are available to enable each painting and problem to be treated on an individual basis.