‘green light’

…’green light’ for analysing more textile fragments in cooperation with the Textile Conservation Department of the Metropolitan Museum.Weave drafts will be generated from high resolution- and micro photographs of these textiles to compare with patterns in historic canvases.

Stay tuned!

15th century fragment in the Met’s collection

…a ‘mistake’ that helped me to deciphere a pattern in two El Greco’s paintings…

Saint Martin and the Beggar and Madonna and Child with Saint Martina and Saint Agnes are painted on a support canvas with a complex pattern.

Analyses of the X-ray images of both paintings show that the pattern of the canvases are identical.

Both canvases show a ‘mistake’ in the same spot!

The ‘mistake’ that shows up in the xray of the textile is the result of the fact that the first treadle of the loom has shaft six attached: this shaft should not be lifted in that weft pass.

It helped me to be more secure of the reconstruction of the pattern and to write the weave draft.

Another intersting aspect is that the weave draft is the same as for the support canvas of El Greco’s The Burial of the Count of Orgaz and Alonso Sánchez Coello’s Infanta Isabel and Magdalena Ruiz but the above mentioned ‘mistake’ does not appear in these canvases.

El Greco Saint Martin and the Beggar 1597-99
National Gallery of Art Washington
X-ray image of the canvas of El Greco’s Saint Martin and the Beggar 1597-99
Courtesy National gallery of Art Washington
weave draft of the pattern of
El Greco’s Saint Martin and the Beggar
weave draft of El Greco’s Madonna and Child with Saint Martina and Saint Agnes 1597 -99

El Greco, Madonna and Child with Saint Martina and Saint Agnes, 1597-99
National Gallery of Art Washington

Another intersting aspect is that the weave draft is the same as for the support canvas of El Greco’s The Burial of the Count of Orgaz and Alonso Sánchez Coello’s Infanta Isabel and Magdalena Ruiz but the above mentioned ‘mistake’ does not appear in these canvases.
Another intersting aspect is that the weave draft is the same as for the support canvas of El Greco’s The Burial of the Count of Orgaz and Alonso Sánchez Coello’s Infanta Isabel and Magdalena Ruiz but the above mentioned ‘mistake’ does not appear in these canvases.

El Greco Vista y Plano de Toledo

Vista y Plano de Toledo 1610

Museu del Greco Toledo

Vista y Plano de Toledo 1610
detail of the support canvas x-ray image with pattern analyses on top , deciphering the pattern at Lab O
weave draft generated at Lab O :woven on a loom with 14 shafts and 14 threadles ; repeat of 50 warps and 50 wefts
source: Carmen Garrido ; Cuad. Art. Gr., 40, 2009, 53-6

Alonso Sánchez Coello and El Greco both used a support canvas with the same woven pattern …

two paintings on a canvas with the same woven pattern

1585-1588

(thread count known of only one painting)

reconstruction of the support canvas of The Buril of the Count of Orgaz 1586-88 El Greco,(©photo João Mariano) the same pattern is found in the canvas of Infanta IsabelClara Eugenia and Magdalena Ruiz 1585-
xray of support canvas (Alonso Sánchez Coello) and weave draft of support canvas (El Greco)
X-Ray image courtesy and authorisation Museo Nacional del Prado P00861 authorization Museo Nacional del Prado ©

—————————————————————————-

Infanta Isabel Clara Eugenia and Madalena Ruiz ; Alonso Sánchez Coello (1585-1588)

and

The Burial of the Count of Orgaz ; El Greco (1586-1588)

are both painted on a support canvas with the same woven pattern

x-ray ©Prado Museum P861

The weave draft is interesting because of half of the repeat is threaded in 12 shafts while the other half in 11 shafts.

Weave draft for both canvases

Full weave draft for both canvases.

O Alonso Sánchez Coello viveu em Portugal.A obra “Infanta Isabel Clara Eugénia com Magdalena Ruiz” é sobre uma tela suporte com padrão complexo tecido. Analises no Lab O revelaram que é o mesmo padrão do que a tela suporte da tela “The Burial of the Count of Orgaz”; El Greco.Ambas pintadas nos anos 1585-88.Coincidência?

Publicado na página do Museu de Arte Antiga:

“Venha descobrir a OBRA CONVIDADA “Infanta Isabel Clara Eugénia com Magdalena Ruiz” de Alonso Sánchez Coello que pertence ao Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid. Em exposição na sala 60/Galeria de Pintura Europeia até 2 de janeiro de 2022.Esta obra integra-se na tradição do retrato de corte criado em meados do século XVI, seguindo o modelo definido por Anthonis Mor, ao representar os membros da Casa de Áustria, e adaptado na Península Ibérica por Alonso Sánchez Coello.Nascido perto de Valência, Coello mudou-se com a família para Portugal, onde iniciou a sua educação artística. D. João III custeou, em 1550, a sua viagem à Flandres, onde foi discípulo de Anthonis Mor. Ao regressar a Lisboa, c. 1552, trabalhou para o príncipe D. João e para a sua mulher, D. Joana, irmã de Filipe II, que, quando enviuvou, regressou a Espanha. Em 1555, Sánchez Coello levou-lhe à corte, em Valladolid, um retrato do seu filho, o futuro rei D. Sebastião. O pintor não regressaria já a terras lusas.A figura da infanta, com uma das mãos apoiada na cabeça de Magdalena Ruiz, remete para outros retratos femininos da dinastia dos Habsburgos. A inclusão da imagem paterna – um retrato dentro do retrato, reproduzindo o busto em alabastro de Pompeo Leoni – servia para reforçar o porte majestático do modelo. A presença da anciã – uma criada muito próxima, vinculada à corte espanhola durante o reinado de Carlos V e de Isabel de Portugal – é igualmente um elemento que reforça o sentido da tradição e da continuidade familiar.A composição revela, por outro lado, curiosas referências filoportuguesas: a infanta exibe uma indumentária com as cores do cerimonial luso (ouro sobre branco) e Magdalena Ruiz – que, em 1581, acompanhara Filipe II a Portugal – ostenta, por sua vez, um colar de coral – eventual recordação dessa viagem – e sustém entre as mãos dois pequenos macacos, oriundos da América amazónica.”

analyses of the pattern of a 16th century painting from The Prado Museum

… the analyses of the X-ray image and trying to find how the threads were organised before this support canvas was woven in the 16th century was not easy!

X-Ray image courtesy and authorisation Museo Nacional del Prado P00861 authorization Museo Nacional del Prado ©

Drawing the lines in colour on top of the xray makes each thread visible, both in horizontal and vertical direction.

These lines on square paper allow us to define the position of vertical threads in the shafts of a loom and how the horizontal threads were woven.

In this way, manually, I search the repeat of a pattern.

Spending much ‘puzzle’ time is also because I have until date not yet found a ‘partner in analyses of xray images’

The above analysis is of the pattern in the support canvas of the ‘obra convidada’ Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga, de Alonso Sanchez Coello ” Infanta Isabel Clara Eugénia com Magdalena Ruiz “

…finishing the draft for the “Encyclopedia of World Textiles: Vol 2 Wovens”

Canvas: the textile layer of paintings” is written with the help of Ralph de Rijke and Cristina Carr. Beautiful high quality pictures were made by João Mariano and authorization for photographs from a painting by Titian , located in The Louvre Museum came in.

I have finisehd my essay with this quote:

“The project shows that innovative research can be done in a local workshop in a rural area provided it has an internet connection, support from conservators, authorization from museum departments for sharing information, and a loom.”

Dr Catherine Dormor & Dr Lynn Tandler. Editors: The Encyclopedia of World Textiles: Vol 2 Wovens The Royal College of Art London

“Deciphering the Textile Layer of Historic Paintings”

DESCRIPTION
Textiles with a complex woven pattern were used as painters’ canvases by Italian and Spanish painters throughout the 16th and 17th centuries. The X-Ray technology reveals these patterns in the paintings and allows us to follow the position of each thread in the textile, both horizontally and vertically. Drawing all crossing points identifies the repeat of the pattern and a weave draft can be generated from this. Reconstructions have been woven in linen on a handloom. The presentation will guide you through the story of this project.
ABOUT THE PRESENTER
Helena Loermans is a former laboratory technician, engaged in histochemical and morphometrical investigation of normal- and pathologic muscle in the mouse, (Nijmegen University, The Netherlands) and is now weaving in her studio in Odemira. Lab O is a laboratory for the research and reconstruction of canvases of old master paintings. Its mission is: Recovering and sharing the knowledge of historic canvases. Loermans studied Jacquard Design in Florence, including textile analysis. She has a long term experience as a fine production weaver and as a weaving teacher and tutor in various European funded projects for Rural Development, Projects on Reintegration in Society as well as for adults with limited capacities.