Sunday, March 04, 2007

Thangka painting restoration/conservation

We finally made it out to visit Suzy today. This was a visit that was originally planned for about a month ago; I had to cancel because I got sick.

It was a nice day for a drive, and we went out to Multnomah Falls for breakfast first before turning back to Corbett for our 1:30pm appt. Since this was Sunday, breakfast turned out to be all you can eat buffet for $20/person (!), a bit more expensive than I had figured. We squeezed in a short hike half way up the Falls after brunch.

Suzy has a very nice studio space and showed us 3 of the thangkas she's been working on (14-18 century). We also saw her photo album of the first 1/3 of the thangkas she restored. Very, VERY, impressive. From weaving in the missing fabric backing, repainting the missing bits/figures, de-oxidation (is that a word?), aging the pigments to match, it's really an incredible process. I guess she's one of a handful of people in the country (or maybe in the world) that does that. Some of the photos we saw, the originals were barely recognizable as to what they were, and when she was finished, they were whole and beautiful again.

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