"Restoration/Revelation: The Conservation Treatment of the 'Ghent Altarpiece' "

Art Matters Lecture with Bart J.C. Devolder (via Zoom)

Bart J.C. Devolder
Chief Conservator, Princeton University Museum of Art

The Ghent Altarpiece (1432) by Jan and Hubert van Eyck is one of the most iconic works of Western art as it embodies the birth of new skills and vision. The artwork in itself is often claimed to be the most stolen painting in history and in spite of its many voyages it is a miracle that until this day only one panel is missing.

Still housed in Saint Bavo Cathedral, Ghent, Belgium, the site for which it was created, The Ghent Altarpiece or Mystic Lamb has undergone conservation and restoration treatment by the Royal Institute for Cultural Heritage (KIK-IRPA, Brussels) since 2012. No one expected this restoration to turn into a revelation: the real Van Eyck had been hidden beneath overpaint for centuries! In his lecture, Bart Devolder shares remarkable discoveries from the first phase and second phase. 

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