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  1. #11

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    Marco, aren't etchings and gravures made on paper? (Just as pt/pd prints...???)

    Obviously, linseed oil will do (does - if you like) much more harm (directly that is, not indirectly - as suggested for elementary pt/pd nanoparticles) to paper. So, if people (museums, collectors, conservationists etc.) are confident (or don't bother) about etchings and/or photogravures, then what's the point of questioning the longevity of pt/pd prints? (Let me mind you that we have an abundant legacy of - very old - etchings in the museums and collections...) Seems like an exercise of futility (in practical sense), OR a subject of academic research - which actually may prove very useful, maybe not necessarily in the intended area; sometimes you can't know exactly where a scientific research may lead you...

    Hope my point's clear now? Relax and print, make your art...

    Regards,
    Loris.

    P.S. See this:
    "...Linen fabric is one of the preferred traditional supports for oil painting. In the United States cotton is popularly used instead as linen is many times more expensive there, restricting its use to professional painters. In Europe however, linen is usually the only fabric support available in art shops. Linen is preferred to cotton for its strength, durability and archival integrity...."

  2. #12

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    Marco, etchings / photogravures discolor considerably (more the latter) especially in the darkest part of the image (where most ink was deposited). Have you inspected the back of an old photogravure?

    Repeating: Relax and print, make your art...

    Regards,
    Loris.

  3. #13

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    About the "myth": Your explanation puts all of old masters in a pretty dumb position. Do you know how much trouble is priming canvas with traditional gesso? They were taking all that pain for nothing, poor dumb people... And what about today's acrylic primers? Useless (in terms of longevity) apparently... :rolleyes:
    Last edited by Loris Medici; 06-04-2010 at 02:04 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: Added ...were... somewhere between. (Fixing a typo.)

  4. #14

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    A last point about linen vs cotton: Linen fibers are much longer than cotton fibers, that's why it's better in terms of strength / archival integrity...

  5. #15
    Marco B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loris Medici View Post
    Obviously, linseed oil will do (does - if you like) much more harm (directly that is, not indirectly - as suggested for elementary pt/pd nanoparticles) to paper.
    Loris, I am getting slightly irritated here (as you obviously also are for an unknown reason to me).

    The only reason I started this thread is:

    A) to inform people of not much known but potentially interesting stuff backed up by some observations of well respected authors in the field
    B) to start a healthy, open and honest discussion on a subject, where I hoped people would point out other literature and scientific weblinks so as to help further d/refine or discuss the topic


    So please, give some good reference that shows to me that oil paint is much more harmful to cellulose art works (whether linen or paper), than is Pt/Pd. Simply saying: etchings last, so must Pt/Pd is from a scientific point of view nonsense, as you know as well.

    I have shown, based on the posted image of James M. Reilly's document and Mike Ware's remark, that it is likely that some non-framed Pt/Pd prints might(!) develop issues with the paper base within a timespan of 1-1.5 century, due to the catalytic nature of the used metals. It is very unlikely, and the authors of the painting book I have dispute it, that oil paint would be a similar thread. Oil paint dries, and than becomes more or less non-reactive, as the polymerization stopped.

    Quote Originally Posted by Loris Medici View Post
    So, if people (museums, collectors, conservationists etc.) are confident (or don't bother) about etchings and/or photogravures, then what's the point of questioning the longevity of pt/pd prints?
    Loris, again, this point is mute... Etchings and oil are something completely different. You can't compare them to Pt/Pd metals on paper. Please note, If you do have some literature and scientific links that show issues with oil-on-paper, I am highly interested to read them, so post the links here.

    Quote Originally Posted by Loris Medici View Post
    About the "myth": Your explanation puts all of old masters in a pretty dumb position. Do you know how much trouble is priming canvas with traditional gesso? They were taking all that pain for nothing, poor dumb people... And what about today's acrylic primers? Useless (in terms of longevity) apparently... :rolleyes:
    Loris, besides this all being pretty much off-topic:

    No, they weren't dumb, but I can assure that the authors of the book on painting I have aren't either...

    Priming is not only done for "protective" reasons, but also for two other major reasons (and yes, I have studied oil painting quite extensively, and painted a bit myself with classical oil paint, have a look at my website):

    - To cover up an absorbent surface, like the linen. Painting directly with oil paint on linen is undoubtedly going to be a pain, as the linen will absorb the oil from the paint, leaving a to dry mass of paint pigment on the canvas, with possible negative consequences for the strength and elasticity of the paint layer as well

    - To provide a smooth surface for classical glazing technique and super detailed paintings. The gesso layer was traditionally ground down to create a perfect flat surface, without the structure of the linen.

    Marco
    Last edited by Marco B; 06-04-2010 at 04:59 PM. Click to view previous post history.
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    "The nineteenth century began by believing that what was reasonable was true, and it wound up by believing that what it saw a photograph of, was true." - William M. Ivins Jr.

    "I don't know, maybe we should disinvent color, and we could just shoot Black & White." - David Burnett in 1978

    "Analog is chemistry + physics, digital is physics + math, which ones did you like most?"

  6. #16
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    And one last point to all, before we end up with endless useless discussion about this:

    I have no doubt a properly framed and processed Pt/Pd print, printed on the highest quality paper, will easily last half a millennium or more

    It is the unframed versions that might develop issues in a more "humanly" timespan... and are the topic of this thread, together with any further (scientific) insights on the processes underlying the possible degradation of paper caused by the catalytic nature of Platinum or Palladium.

    Marco
    My website

    "The nineteenth century began by believing that what was reasonable was true, and it wound up by believing that what it saw a photograph of, was true." - William M. Ivins Jr.

    "I don't know, maybe we should disinvent color, and we could just shoot Black & White." - David Burnett in 1978

    "Analog is chemistry + physics, digital is physics + math, which ones did you like most?"

  7. #17

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    I've made my points very clearly. Relax and print / do your art Marco, don't be so anal, OK? You look odd by requesting a scientific reference for every claim - I simply asked a logical question: What's the significance of this phenomenon? Is it worth to worry about it? (In short: So what?) Chill out, that's something easy to do in The Netherlands (with some help?), I presume...

    BTW see few links about oils on paper here:
    http://www.utrechtart.com/ask-the-ex...FAQ_OIL.cfm#Q8 (It's a paint manufacturer's site...)
    http://www.winsornewton.com/main.aspx?PageID=344 (Another paint manufacturer...)
    http://www.sewanee.edu/chem/chem&art...98/Binders.htm (See section "Watercolor papers" and the reference right at the end of the section...)
    ... and thousands more. All sources say either (a.) Don't do it, it's not archival (dismissive) or (b.) Seal the surface with gesso / acrylic binder and such, affix to a rigid support (the latter suggestion occasionally). If not, paper will get harmed...

    Do you have a single example / case of pt/pd that was disintegrated due catalytic reaction of pt/pd nanoparticles? (In scientific literature please!) IIRC, the only effect observed was discoloration (proportional to the image) in the facing sheet. (BTW, what do we know about the storage conditions of the print in question?) Do you have a single example / case where the back of a pt/pd print was discolored / weakened (and what not) proportional to the image density in scientific literature? Photogravures do...


    P.S. BTW, what you have brought into discussion is well known to serious practitioners of the medium and was discussed (maybe not here - but internet does not consist solely of apug.org, right?) at least once if not more... (I had seen that mirror image at least twice before.) Nothing new in other words. But thanks for good intention anyway...

  8. #18
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    So let's see if a beginner in Pd-Pt printing understands the content of this dialogue. There's reason to believe that the metallic platinum in Pd-Pt prints catalyzes SO2 to SO3 and hence to sulphuric acid. The process doesn't work with buffered paper, it has to be acidified first. Hydrochloric acid or the oxalate developers do that. At the end, you wash it thoroughly and get it neutral. Couldn't one buffer it again? With what?

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loris Medici View Post
    I've made my points very clearly. Relax and print / do your art Marco, don't be so anal, OK? You look odd by requesting a scientific reference for every claim - I simply asked a logical question: What's the significance of this phenomenon? Is it worth to worry about it? (In short: So what?) Chill out, that's something easy to do in The Netherlands (with some help?), I presume...
    Loris,

    This is the thing I absolutely don't get in your attitude: as soon as the longevity of silver gelatine comes up on APUG, everyone jumps on it, start a healthy discussion with tips about toning etc, and alternative process printers like Pt/Pd or Carbon are saying you "should start print Pt/Pd or Carbon" because "the longevity of silver prints suck" and "why use a material that will self-destruct like silver?" or something similar.

    So, if people feel the need to discuss and argue the longevity of silver gelatine prints, why on earth not discuss or argue the possible issues with other print types like Pt/Pd???

    I just don't get it... I also have the slight feeling that Pt/Pd printers, simply "don't want to hear it"... they invested time and money to get the longest longevity prints, and now someone is telling them there might (!) be issues in some cases they had not foreseen...

    Quote Originally Posted by Loris Medici View Post
    BTW see few links about oils on paper here:
    http://www.utrechtart.com/ask-the-ex...FAQ_OIL.cfm#Q8 (It's a paint manufacturer's site...)
    http://www.winsornewton.com/main.aspx?PageID=344 (Another paint manufacturer...)
    http://www.sewanee.edu/chem/chem&art...98/Binders.htm (See section "Watercolor papers" and the reference right at the end of the section...)
    ... and thousands more. All sources say either (a.) Don't do it, it's not archival (dismissive) or (b.) Seal the surface with gesso / acrylic binder and such, affix to a rigid support (the latter suggestion occasionally). If not, paper will get harmed...
    Thanks for the links. I appreciate it, will have a look at them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Loris Medici View Post
    Do you have a single example / case of pt/pd that was disintegrated due catalytic reaction of pt/pd nanoparticles? (In scientific literature please!) IIRC, the only effect observed was discoloration (proportional to the image) in the facing sheet.
    Loris,

    No, I don't have an example YET. That is exactly the reason I started this thread, that people might be able to confirm Mike Ware's remark about issues with platinotypes, preferably posting links to documents describing it and showing real-world examples. But than again, I doubt Mike Ware would make such a significant remark if he hadn't actually seen or been in contact with some good museum conservators who told him about it first hand.

    Mike Ware is "not just everybody", he seems quite well respected, and undoubtedly has made some significant contributions to the alternative process community. Why would he risk his reputation telling nonsense about Pt/Pd? So if he says there have been documented cases of issues with Pt/Pd due to acidification, I do think this is something to listen to and possibly learn from.

    I repeat Mike Ware's statement here:

    "It has already been stated that chrysotype resembles the better-known, and at one time widely acclaimed, platinotype process (38). New chrysotypes are extremely light-fast and resistant to chemical attack; they therefore enjoy an archival permanence at least equalling, and perhaps surpassing, that of the platinotype. The conservatorial problem which has beset all historic platinotypes arises from the high catalytic activity of platinum black, which can bring about the aerial oxidation of SO2 to SO3, thus causing serious acid embrittlement of the paper base by sulphuric acid formed in situ. In contrast to platinum, nanoparticle gold has a very low catalytic activity in this respect (39), so this problem should be absent from chrysotypes. The longevity of the paper substrate will also be enhanced by the alkaline conditions of the wet processing, in contrast to the hydrochloric acid clearing baths sometimes used to process platinotypes."

    Now do you really think this is just an arbitrary or non-significant remark that can be simply dismissed without any second thought?? I find his remark strong, and something to think about...

    Quote Originally Posted by Loris Medici View Post
    (BTW, what do we know about the storage conditions of the print in question?)
    Completely fair remark. You are right the storage conditions play a significant role, but than again, I already stated properly framed and processed prints are highly likely to keep almost "indefinitely" :o

    Actually: another important thing here is that we may actually be lucky with the current times. After the big "acid-rain" row in the seventies and especially eighties, many western companies invested hundreds of millions to significantly reduce sulphurdioxide emmisions. Our air (even the urban one) is definitely much cleaner in terms of sulphurdioxide than it probably was in the beginning of the industrial age (say 1850-1900 London), where most of the possibly affected Pt/Pd might date from. In addition, the switch to gas instead of coal for heating homes and cooking, has made a significant positive impact as well.

    Still, we are not down to really clean air. During my biology study in 1995, I went to Poland. We did a small research project there under the guidance of a Polish professor, mapping out lichens on trees around a small village. This town still used coal for all its heating and cooking. Lichens are very susceptible to SO2, and the Polish professor had made a "measurement scale" that allowed one to determine the level of SO2 in the air based on the lichens present on trees. Worked like a charm, you could see the SO2 load diminish going from the town into the forest by mapping out the susceptible and less susceptible species of lichen...

    Quote Originally Posted by Loris Medici View Post
    Do you have a single example / case where the back of a pt/pd print was discolored / weakened (and what not) proportional to the image density in scientific literature? Photogravures do...
    Again, I was starting this discussion in the hope of some healthy contributions of others, possibly confirming Mike Ware's significant remark by showing an actual example.
    Last edited by Marco B; 06-05-2010 at 03:49 AM. Click to view previous post history.
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    "The nineteenth century began by believing that what was reasonable was true, and it wound up by believing that what it saw a photograph of, was true." - William M. Ivins Jr.

    "I don't know, maybe we should disinvent color, and we could just shoot Black & White." - David Burnett in 1978

    "Analog is chemistry + physics, digital is physics + math, which ones did you like most?"

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by phaedrus View Post
    So let's see if a beginner in Pd-Pt printing understands the content of this dialogue. There's reason to believe that the metallic platinum in Pd-Pt prints catalyzes SO2 to SO3 and hence to sulphuric acid. The process doesn't work with buffered paper, it has to be acidified first. Hydrochloric acid or the oxalate developers do that. At the end, you wash it thoroughly and get it neutral. Couldn't one buffer it again? With what?
    You are not completely right. The process ALSO takes place in well buffered paper, at least, that is what I assume. Unless a high pH completely blocks Pt/Pd prints catalytic activity, Pt/Pd will still convert the SO2 in SO3. The difference with non-buffered papers is that the buffered papers have a "back-up" alkali reserve, that will neutralize any formed acid as long as the buffer hasn't been exhausted, thereby significantly delaying the onset of any issues with acid destroying the paper base.

    How long such a buffer lasts under "normal" conditions, I have no idea...

    Again, any literature or scientific research links might be nice to see. One could setup an SO2 fumigation test of a Pt/Pd print compared to a "control" sheet of paper not coated with Pt/Pd. Might give interesting results... (I am in no position to do this myself)
    Last edited by Marco B; 06-05-2010 at 06:32 AM. Click to view previous post history.
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    "The nineteenth century began by believing that what was reasonable was true, and it wound up by believing that what it saw a photograph of, was true." - William M. Ivins Jr.

    "I don't know, maybe we should disinvent color, and we could just shoot Black & White." - David Burnett in 1978

    "Analog is chemistry + physics, digital is physics + math, which ones did you like most?"

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