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Thursday, June 1 • 4:00pm - 4:30pm
(Paintings) A Colonial Portrait and a Mystery

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Conservators are often asked to discern the artist of a work, but rarely are we required to identify a subject. In a unique treatment, undertaken at ArtCare Miami, we were asked to do just that. Button Gwinnett was an elusive signer of the Declaration of Independence. Killed in a duel one year after the Declaration, his signature and image have been sought after for many years. A portrait from Georgia, his home state, was attributed to the Colonial artist Jeremiah Theus, and was purported to be of Button Gwinnett, but the image of the sitter was obscured by layers of discolored overpaint. An inscription on the reverse, first analyzed by Sheldon Keck in the 1950s was problematic. The search for the identity of the portrait involved conservation treatment, discerning numerous previous treatments, art historical and historical research, scientific analysis, and FBI aging of a portrait of Button Gwinnett as a youth.

Speaker(s)
avatar for Rustin Levenson-[Fellow]

Rustin Levenson-[Fellow]

President and Founder, ArtCare Conservation, A Rustin Levenson Company
B.A. Wellesley College; Diploma in Paintings Conservation, Fogg Art Museum, and Harvard University. Conservation staff of the Fogg Museum (1969-1973), the Canadian Conservation Institute (1973-1974); The National Gallery of Canada (1974-1977); and The Metropolitan Museum of Art (1977-1980... Read More →

Co-Author(s)
avatar for Emily MacDonald Korth

Emily MacDonald Korth

President and Chief Analyst, Longevity Art Preservation, LLC and Art Preservation Index/APIx, LLC
Emily MacDonald-Korth is an art preservation specialist working in art conservation and research, fine art and collections consulting, and historic paint analysis. MacDonald-Korth has worked on conservation and technical analysis projects across the United States, in China, and in... Read More →

Thursday June 1, 2017 4:00pm - 4:30pm
Regency C Ballroom Level, West Tower

Attendees (81)