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Conservator Peggy Olley cleaning the painted surface of the chest

Conservation Treatment

The information from the technical study provided a clearer picture of how the chest originally would have appeared. But how could this information be used in the presentation of the object? Rather than undertaking a complete removal of later paint layers and inpainting of damaged areas, conservators and curators decided that a less invasive treatment would be appropriate. The treatment, which involved stabilization of paint layers, surface cleaning, and local retouching, brought the surface closer to its original appearance while at the same time retaining the later paint layers.

The chest, along with the digital reconstruction and information from the technical study, was included in the 2010 exhibition To Love, Honor, and Obey? Stories of Italian Renaissance Marriage Chests at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. This exhibition marked the first time in many years that the chest was prominently displayed in the galleries.

The treatment of the chest was made possible with support from Maude de Schauensee.