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Report workshop 2012:

Article in BN de Stem (Dutch only):

atelier jos

On Sunday 21 January the new year will be celebrated by ARA with a New Year's drink. The drinks will be combined this year with a studio visit to the restoration workshop of Jos van Extel, in Schijndel.

About Jos van Extel: Working from 1972, first employed by Kunsthandel BORZO in Den Bosch, where he also received his education from the father to son principle, this was until September 1988. From that moment he started at Boselie Encadreurs Restaurateurs and had the restoration workshop started, this was until March 2002.

On 1 April 2002 he started as an independent restorer with "Jos van Extel restoration workshop" in Schijndel.

Together with the ARA board, Jos van Extel will gladly receive you for a snack and a drink and a fun and educational visit.

The drink starts at 13:00 and continues until 17:00.
The location is:
Wijbosscheweg 31
5482 EA Schijndel
(Tel: 06 - 53202285)

Are you coming to the glass with us? Sign up by e-mail to the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. so that we know how many people we can count on.

We hope to receive you the 21st in Schijndel!

Paolo Cremonesi, the most prominent adherent of the methods of Richard Wolbers, has taken up the fight against the harmful products being used almost on a daily base in restorative practice. While the use of less or no solvents is foremost in his concern, Cremonesi turns his attention to other substances too. Working with great conviction, Cremonesi extended the knowledge and usability of Wolbers’ micro- and macro emulsions, making it possible to construe them now using products that are marketed in Europe and conforming to Europe’s standards. Thus Cremonesi increased both diligent care for the object and worker safety in restoration.

The primary aims of the new methods remain the same as those of traditional practice: to remove an unwanted substance from a surface. This can be restricted to the sole removal of surface dirt, but could include the partial or complete taking off of varnish layer, old retouching or overpaint. These are different tasks demanding different approaches, tailormade materials and techniques.

The pinnacle of success remains working on a surface without harming the original.

Central in the methods developed by Cremonesi is the use of watery solutions containing alcohols, silicones, surfactants and chelators, all in levels of acidity appropriate to the work at hand. If a surface is especially hydrophilic and some of the more fundamental watery solutions used on less vulnerable objects could prove injurious, these methods can be adjusted accordingly.

After years of research, the workshop “Emulsions for Surface Cleaning and Removal of Film-Forming Materials” is presented for the first time outside of Italy. Paolo Cremonesi has chosen the Netherlands as a podium for a new series of workshops, specifically dealing with the cleaning of paintings using emulsions. Five days filled with both theory and practice, taking head on the three main questions in cleaning: partial removal or complete, and what to do when the surface is vulnerable to water?

Dr. Cremonesi

“Emulsions for Surface Cleaning and Removal of Film-Forming Materials” a workshop by Dr. Paolo Cremonesi (English spoken)

Where: Werkgebouw Het Veem, van Diemenstraat 410, Amsterdam

When: 15 – 19 januar 2018

Money: € 560,- ( ARA members € 520,-)

Subscription: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. of This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

April 28-29th, Brussels (Belgium)

We kindly invite you on our 2-days colloquium on advanced measuring tools and improved methods and new concepts for preventive conservation. Experts from Europe, the United States and Canada will present overviews about current evolutions, challenging case studies and new possibilities of state-of-the-art monitoring systems. This event is a unique occasion to exchange ideas by means of reflections and discussions. More information and registration:


A conference on the preservation or restoration
of complex collection objects

18 -19 -20 November 2015, Museum Boerhaave, National Museum for the History of Science and Medicine, Leiden, the Netherlands.


In every museum collection there are objects that because of their complex nature are more challenging to preserve than others. It may be objects comprised of a variety of materials, components made from materials that affect the stability of the object both chemically and structurally or objects made from materials that so far do not have a standard method of conservation. This results in conservators and curators having to reach out and work interdisciplinary both within the field and with other disciplines. The scientific field is a familiar ground to most conservators but now also industry, technology and other fields may need to be approached.

To address the topics of cases, materials, good practice and teamwork we would like to organize a two day symposium with an additional workshop on 18-20th of November 2015 in Museum Boerhaave.

Please follow this link for more information and registration for this conference.

The organizing committee,

Auke Gerrits
Bart Grob

Museum Boerhaave

From 20-23 August 2015.
Location: Film theatre Lumière, Bogaardenstraat 40B in Maastricht

Poster Annual assemblyThe European Society Light & Glass will hold its annual assembly in film theatre Lumière, Bogaardenstraat 40B in Maastricht from 20 to 23 August 2015. Through the course of the assembly, art historians, restorers and specialists in the field of light objects will hold several lectures. One of the lectures will be given by Martijn Akkerman, jewellery expert on “Tussen Kunst en Kitsch” (Dutch equivalent of the Antiques Roadshow).

The Light and Glass society was founded in May 2000 in Kamenický Šenov (Steinschönau), the old centre of the Austro-Bohemian glass and chandelier production in North Bohemia. The objective of Light and Glass is to take a closer look at and study rare and art historically interesting light objects such as chandeliers and “girandoles en appliques”, which have often been neglected over time, perform responsible restorations and provide proper documentation.

Light and Glass offers a platform for art historians, restorers and specialists, dealers and collectors to share their studies and findings by way of publications, lectures and expositions. Contemporary artists, architects and a designer platform will also be involved in the events of Light and Glass.

Pascal Mestrom has been asked this year to host and organize the Maastricht edition of the annual assembly (free entrance!). The programme will be published on the website of Light and Glass and Mestrom Chandeliers.

More information and reservations: &


ARA Netherlands organizes a three day workshop presented by Professor Richard C. Wolbers (Delaware University)

New Methods of Cleaning with Aqueous Gels

The eminent restorer and scientist Richard Wolbers will in December 2015 present a series of two three day workshops in Hilversum explaining his methods of surface cleaning. The workshop can be of interest for restorers of many disciplines and deals with the restoration of textiles, paper, wooden objects and paintings alike.
In the mid-1980s, Richard Wolbers at the University of Delaware introduced solvent-based gels, resin soaps, and enzymes as alternative cleaning systems. For effective use of these systems, a basic understanding of the chemistry of all the layers is even more crucial than it is for solvent or alkaline-based cleaning solutions. These cleaning systems offer three important benefits: 1) they enable the cleaning of surfaces that could not be cleaned by traditional solvent or mechanical methods; 2) they enable a more controlled and selective cleaning than these methods; and 3) they have relatively low toxicity.
The "Wolbers Workshop," as it has come to be known, has been presented many times in many countries since then; these cleaning systems are now widely used by conservators worldwide. The popularity of the workshops indicates the importance of surface cleaning in conservation treatments.
Richard Wolbers considers it a challenge to illuminate his methods during these workshops in a way nonscientists can understand and as accessible as possible. During the morning sessions some theory will be explained and after lunch practice will be encountered in the form of objects brought in by participants. A reader will be provided and the spoken language is (of course) English.
The workshop will be held on 9,10,11 and 14,15,16 December in Hilversum and will cost € 350,- at most for the three days. Those interested can subscribe at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. If the number of subscribers exceeds the places open during the course, efforts will be made to organize an extra workshop in the spring of 2016. More details and a reader will be made available in the run up to the workshop.

Richard Wolbers geeft les

Enlistment is closed. Unfortunately not all applications can participate in december. We are in negotiation about prolongation of the workshops in 2016. But Richard Wolbers allready is nearly booked full for 2016. The first opportinaty then will be beginning of 2017. All enlisted will hear from us soon.
The ARA board.