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Pioneering Research Project on Acrylic Paints – Findings Revealed

November 1, 2009

Art expert Bronwyn Ormsby observes an acrylic by John Hoyland. Photo: EFE/Tate.

LONDON.- A pioneering three-year research project, the Tate AXA Art Modern Paints Project (TAAMPP), has now been completed, providing vital information for conservators and artists about the properties of acrylic-based paints. This project has enabled the expansion of the first major in-depth study of these paints anywhere in the world and the results will help to preserve modern masterpieces and provide the springboard for further much-needed research into this now widely-used medium.

Since the early 1960s, acrylic emulsion paints and primers have been extensively used by artists, accounting for approximately 50% of paint sales over the last 30 years. They are also the most common priming medium for modern canvases. The need to explore conservation issues surrounding these paints has recently become more pressing as early acrylic works are now approaching 50 years old. Despite the frequent occurrence of acrylic paint in collections, conservators have previously had access to little information on how acrylic emulsion paints might alter with age, or how they are affected by conservation treatments such as surface cleaning.

Read more at: Pioneering Research Project on Acrylic Paints – Findings Revealed

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