Fade to grey

Conservation Issues

Fade to grey

Postby Roboframer » Fri May 15, 2015 11:59 pm

This is a 50-odd year old pastel, I don't know what sort of quality pastels were available then but there's obviously a high pigment content. Artist quality pastels these days are almost pure pigment; this has not faded but look at the paper, the denim blue colour at the edges is where it was folded. The image didn't totally survive, it was framed against the glass and there was a ghost-image left on it.

pastel fade.jpg
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Re: Fade to grey

Postby Not your average framer » Sun May 17, 2015 7:19 pm

I would not be at all surprised if the customer was completely unaware that the colour had faded from the paper. The fact that folded portion of the paper was not faded speaks volumes.

Until you pointed it out, I had not considered this, but thinking about it, when we get an old pastel brought in for reframing the colours are always still good and I can't ever remember seeing a faded pastel being brought it by any of my customers in the 10+ years that I have had the shop at all.
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Re: Fade to grey

Postby prospero » Mon May 18, 2015 12:46 am

Original works done with artist-quality paints/pencils don't fade as a rule. They are graded in lightfastness. Some paints used in illustration works are very fugitive, generally synthetic pigments. But these works are reproduced and the originals usually chucked out.
Pastels are more often than not done on tinted paper like Ingres. These do fade so the background will change over time. As long as the fade is even it's usually not a problem.
One thing I learned not to do is to put a picture in the window with a price label covering any part of the mount. Take it away after a very short period and you get a hard-edged dark patch beneath. What's funny is, no matter how long you leave it without a label the dark patch never fades to match the rest of the mount. :?
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