A secret revealed

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Painting conservation reveals exciting find!

Samantha Harris
5th Jul 2017
By Samantha Harris

We were pleased to see the return of the oil painting ‘Still Life Flowers and Fruit’ by Jacob Bogdany c. 1720 after conservation funded by the Bentlif Trust. You can see it back on display in the Museum’s Art Gallery.

During conservation an interesting find was made. Not only are the delicate flowers much clearer after the re-varnishing, and the cheeky squirrel far more visible nibbling on the fruit, but it also appears that the painting holds a secret!

If you look closely in the background at the top right of the artwork, the cloudy looking brown section shows the shadow of a hand with a lace cuff. We’ve highlighted it in the image above.

This cuff is part of a portrait that was originally painted on the canvas but was then painted over with the artwork we see today.

It’s a fascinating example of 18th century recycling!

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