National Gallery Technical Bulletin Volume 33, 2012 Colourless Powdered Glass as an Additive in Fifteenth- and Sixteenth-Century European Paintings Marika Spring Introduction



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GERMAN PAINTINGS











































Master of the Life of the Virgin, ‘The Presentation in the Temple’ (NG706), probably 1460–75.

Mordant for the gilding on the Virgin’s robe, with lead white, yellow earth and lead-tin yellow (c. 3–10 µm).a

soda ash (leached)

7.1

3.8

1.6

69.8

0.4

2.3d

1.3

1.8

10.2

0.1

0.7

1.1

Master of the Life of the Virgin, ‘The Conversion of Saint Hubert: Left Hand Shutter’ (NG252), c.1485–90.

Brownish-yellow mordant for gold harness on horse, with lead white, lead-tin yellow, some black and earth; red pattern on Saint Hubert’s tunic, with red lake (c. 3–10 µm)a

wood ash-lime (high lime-low pot-ash)

1.6

3.3

4.7

54.4

3.6

5.7d

0.3

3.6

21.1

0.3

0.4

0.7

Workshop of the Master of the Life of the Virgin, ‘The Mass of Saint Hubert: Right Hand Shutter’ (NG253), c.1485–90.

Red undersleeve of the figure behind Saint Hubert, with red lake, c. 10–20 µm.a

soda ash

11.7

4.0

2.6

66.6

0.3

0.5

1.0

2.1

10.3

0.1

0.2

0.5

Master of the Aachen Altarpiece, ‘The Crucifixion’ (NG1049), c.1495–1505.

Shadow of the Magdalen’s red cloak, with red lake, 7–20 µm.a

soda ash

10.0

4.3

2.7

67.0

0.4

2.2d

0.8

2.0

9.3

0.1

0.6

0.5

Master of the Aachen Altarpiece, ‘Pilate washing his hands’ (Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool, no.1225), c.1495–1505, wing panel belonging with NG1049 above.

Red glaze on Christ’s purple cloak, with red lake (applied over blue), c. 7–10 µm.a

soda ash

10.1

4.4

1.8

68.2

0.2

0.8

0.8

1.9

10.3

0.1

0.8

0.5

Workshop of Albrecht Dürer, ‘The Virgin and Child (The Madonna with the Iris)’ (NG5592), c.1500–10.

Red dress and cloak of the Virgin, with red lake, 5–20 μm.a

wood ash-lime (high lime-low potash)

2.4

3.0

5.8

55.5

3.3

2.0d

0.7

4.6

21.0

0.2

0.9

0.5

Master of the Saint Bartholomew Altarpiece, ‘The Deposition’ (NG6470), c.1500–05.

Shadow of Saint John’s red cloak, with red lake, 2–10 μm.a

wood ash-lime (high lime-low potash)

0.5

2.2

4.3

51.1

3.6

5.3d

0.6

5.0

25.7

0.0

1.2

0.5

Master of the Saint Bartholomew Altarpiece, ‘Saints Peter and Dorothy’ (NG707), probably 1505–10.

Saint Dorothy’s pink underdress, with red lake and lead white, 5–50 μm.a

wood ash-lime (high lime-low potash)

1.6

3.0

1.9

58.9

3.2

0.8

0.6

4.9

23.4

0.3

0.7

0.6

Workshop of the Master of the Saint Bartholomew Altarpiece, ‘The Virgin and Child in Glory with Saints’ (NG6497), c.1512.

Virgin’s red dress, with red lake; yellow-brown mordant for gilding, with lead white, yellow earth and lead-tin yellow, 10–20 µm.a

wood ash-lime (high lime-low potash)

2.6

4.1

3.0

56.9

3.7

1.9d

1.0

3.5

21.5

0.4

0.9

0.5

Master of Cappenberg (Jan Baegert?), ‘Christ before Pilate’ (NG2154), c.1520.

Yellow mordant for gilding, with lead white, yellow earth and lead-tin yellow, c.20 µm.a

wood ash-lime (high lime-low potash)

2.6

3.8

1.7

58.8

3.1

0.4

0.7

4.0

23.3

0.2

1.0

0.5

Wolf Huber, ‘Christ taking leave of his Mother’ (NG6550), c.1520.

Shadow of the red robe of the woman supporting Mary, with red lake, 5–50 μm.a

Type I (leached soda ash?)
Type II (wood ash)

8.2
0.1

2.7
2.6

1.7
0.9

67.7
53.3

0.5
0.9

0.5
0.5

0.9
0.1

3.5
21.3

11.9
18.9

0.1
0.3

1.5
0.8

1.0
0.6

Nicolas de Neufchâtel, ‘Portrait of a Young Lady’ (NG184), probably 1561, Nuremberg.

Brownish-grey background, with lead white and black, 5–10 µm.a

wood ash-lime (high lime-low potash)

0.8

2.2

2.2

51.0

3.7

0.4

0.5

9.2

25.7

0.2

3.5

0.6

NETHERLANDISH PAINTINGS











































Jan van Eyck, ‘The Annunciation’, National Gallery of Art, Washington (inv.1937.1.39), c.1434–36

Red paint, with red lake and coal black; yellow mordant for gold rays with lead white, yellow earth and a little lead-tin yellow; two types of glass, 5–20 µm.b,c

Type I (wood ash-lime)
Type II (wood ash)

1.0
2.4

4.0
4.5

2.4
4.0

57.1
53.6

3.0
6.6

1.1
3.3d

0.1
0.6

7.5
7.2

22.0
16.2

0.2
0.2

1.1
0.6

0.5
0.9

Jan van Eyck, ‘The Arnolfini Portrait’ (NG186), 1434

Red curtain, in underpaint (with vermilion, red lake, black and a little ultramarine) and surface paint (with red lake and a little lead white), c.5 µm.a

Type I (wood ash with some fern ash?)
Type II (wood ash)
Type III (wood ash-lime)

0.4
3.2
1.7

4.5
6.3
3.5

1.5
2.9
2.7

55.0
49.7
53.8

4.9
6.0
3.2

0.4
1.8d
4.3d

0.3
0.8
0.4

17.1
10.1
6.3

14.0
16.3
22.2

0.3
0.1
0.1

1.3
0.9
0.9

0.5
1.6
0.8

Rogier van der Weyden, ‘The Magdalen Reading’ (NG654), before 1438.

Saint John’s red cloak, in underpaint (with vermilion) and surface paint (with red lake and a little lead white), c.5 µm .a,c

wood ash

0.7

4.5

2.3

54.5

5.2

4.4d

0.5

13.9

12.8

0.2

0.7

0.4

Follower of Robert Campin, ‘The Virgin and Child before a Firescreen’ (NG2609), c.1440.

Red cushion, with red lake, vermilion and a little lead white, c.10 µm.b,c

wood ash

1.3

4.1

4.7

53.0

4.6

4.2d

1.2

11.7

14.5

0.1

0.6

0.4

Attributed to the workshop of Rogier van der Weyden, ‘Pietà’ (NG6265), c.1465.

Saint Jerome’s red cloak, with red lake and vermilion, c.2–3 µm.a,c

wood ash

1.9

5.7

5.4

47.0

6.3

6.9d

0.7

9.7

15.1

0.0

0.5

0.7

Dirk Bouts, ‘The Virgin and Child’ (NG2595), c.1465.

Red pattern on cloth-of-gold hanging, with red lake and lead white, or with red lake only in darkest shadows, 5–20 µm.b

wood ash-lime

1.5

3.2

3.9

54.9

3.6

1.3d

0.9

6.6

21.6

0.2

1.7

0.6

Workshop of Dirk Bouts, ‘The Virgin and Child’ (NG708), c.1465.

Virgin’s red cloak, shadow, with red lake, c.5 µm.a

wood ash

2.0

5.7

3.2

54.6

4.6

3.9d

1.1

9.9

13.5

0.2

0.7

0.5

Dirk Bouts, ‘Christ Crowned with Thorns’ (NG1083) c.1470.

Christ’s red cloak, in underpaint (with vermilion) and surface paint (with red lake and a little vermilion), 2–20 µm.a

wood ash-lime (high lime-low pot-ash)

2.6

3.2

4.6

57.4

4.0

1.2d

0.7

3.9

20.7

0.3

1.0

0.4

Hieronymous Bosch, ‘Christ Mocked (The Crowning with Thorns)’ (NG 4744), c.1490–1500.

Red headdress of figure at left, with vermilion and red lead in underpaint, with red lake in uppermost red glaze, 5–10 μm.a

wood ash-lime (high lime-low potash)

2.5

3.7

2.8

55.6

3.4

4.5d

0.9

4.1

21.2

0.2

0.6

0.4

After Robert Campin, ‘The Virgin and Child in an Apse with Two Angels’ (NG2608), c.1500?

Pale pink tile, with lead white and fluorite, c.30 µm.a

wood ash-lime (high lime-low potash)

1.7

2.6

1.3

56.8

2.8

0.9

0.5

3.7

27.1

0.6

1.2

0.8

Workshop of Goossen van der Weyden, ‘The Flight into Egypt’ (NG1084), c.1515.

Shadow of Saint Joseph’s red drapery; underpaint (with vermilion, black and white) and upper layers (with red lake and varying amounts of white and black), 5–10 µm.a,c

wood ash-lime (high lime-low potash)

1.8

3.4

6.2

51.4

4.8

5.6d

0.9

4.2

20.3

0.3

0.7

0.4

Workshop of Jean Bellegambe, ‘The Virgin and Child’ (NG 265), c.1520.

Virgin’s red cloak, with red lake, mostly 2–5 μm, one particle 70 μm.b

Type I (wood ash–lime, high lime–low potash) Type II (wood ash)

2.0
2.4

3.1
5.4

3.1
3.5

59.3
57.0

2.6
3.4

0.4
2.8

0.5
0.7

5.4
9.2

22.1
14.2

0.2
0.0

0.6
0.5

0.7
0.8

Workshop of Marinus van Reymerswaele, ‘Two Tax Gatherers’ (NG 944), c.1540.

Shadow of red robe of man at right, with red lake (lower glaze layers only, and not final blotted glaze), c. 10–20 μm.a

wood ash–lime (high lime–low potash)

1.5

3.1

4.0

61.0

3.0

0.7

0.5

5.4

19.0

0.3

0.9

0.7

Martin van Heemskerck, ‘The Virgin and Saint John the Evangelist’ (NG6508.1), c.1540.

Saint John’s red robe, in underpaint (with vermilion and red lake) and surface paint (with red lake and a little black), 20–30 µm.a

wood ash

1.9

4.9

1.7

56.0

3.4

0.4

0.6

11.6

17.7

0.3

0.8

0.8

Joachim Beuckelaer, ‘The Four Elements: Air’ (NG6587), 1570.

Red cloth in the basket in the foreground, shadow, with red lake, 10–20 µm.a

wood ash-lime

0.7

2.7

3.9

57.4

2.4

0.8

0.4

7.6

21.9

0.3

1.2

0.7




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