Portrait of John Norton, Jr. (1783–1858), 1818
Asa Park (American, died 1827)
Oil on canvas
Gift of Robert L. Boone Jr., Charles N. Boone, Elizabeth B. Shmock, and Sarah B. Burke in memory of their parents Elizabeth Sharpe Boone and Robert Lee Boone 1971.6.1

How much will it cost? $4,000


Poor Mr. Norton. He is currently trapped in a dirty, damaged painting.

The unlined canvas has gone slack in its frame, and there are prominent, visible creases across the top and bottom of the painting, where the underlying stretcher has pressed against the fragile canvas. Structural intervention is required, which will necessitate removing the canvas from its stretcher. If the tacking margins are worn or frayed, as is suspected, strip lining the edges will be necessary, in order to strengthen and stabilize the overall canvas.

The surface of the painting is in dire need of assistance. There is a coat of embedded grime underneath a top layer of varnish, giving the overall painting a mottled appearance. A layer of dirt rests atop the surface coat of varnish. Mr. Norton’s face suffers from prominent craquelure, with associated lifting and insecurity of the paint layers. There is paint loss in his cravat.

The layers of dirt and schmutz, along with the discolored varnish will be carefully removed, as will the lowest layer of embedded grime which coats raw paint surface. New varnish will be applied, and losses will be filled and inpainted.

Major improvement is anticipated for this portrait. He deserves to look his best in our Kentucky galleries!