Before surface restoration

The Domitian before the surface restoration. Photo: Helena Christerdotter.

Retouching and overpainting

Before the surface restoration, the paintings conservators stated: ”The painting is covered by a very thick darkened and oxidized dammar varnish which is partially blanched and obscures the overall look of the painting. It has been partially overpainted and has many darkened and discolored retouches. The varnish and the retouches result in a difficulty to fully see the painting.”

Retouches, Domitian’s face.

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Retouches, Domitian’s right hand.

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Retouches, Domitian’s left arm.

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Later changes

Statement made before the surface restoration: ”Later changes have been made to the original composition. For example, all the leaves we now see in the laurel wreath are painted over the original leaves. The newer leaves are more in numbers and have different shapes than the overpainted original leaves as one can see in the overlay image above to the left. The overlay image consists of an x-ray image of the head and a corresponding transparent image of the head superimposed on the x-ray image. Based on pigments found in the newer leaves the overpainting must have taken place after the early 18th century.”