Paintings are among the most important and most visited masterpieces in European museums, galleries and exhibition facilities.

To preserve the paintings as close as possible to the artists’ original expression is a central focus for national authorities, museum administrators and conservators.

An important part of this work is to protect the paintings against the degrading influences of the various indoor environments. Specially designed microclimate frames are increasingly being used for this purpose.

There is a growing concern about the nature of the microclimate, which develops over time in these enclosed spaces and it’s potential for damage to the paintings.

The main aim of the PROPAINT project is to develop innovative protection treatments used as a preventive conservation measure for paintings during exhibition, storage and transit. The PROPAINT project will investigate the protective effect of microclimate frames for paintings. PROPAINT will undertake research on the protective effect of varnishes applied to paintings generally and inside microclimate frames specifically. Measurements of the state of microenvironments in microclimate frames and the potential deteriorating effects on paintings will be made both in the laboratory and in the field by using, for the first time simultaneously, several dosimeters developed in previous EC projects. The appropriateness and synergies of their integrated use will be evaluated.  The results of the project will allow improved design of microclimate frames to offer best possible microclimates for conservation of paintings during exhibition, storage and transit. The project will contribute with improved comparative knowledge about microclimate effects on varnishes applied to paintings as remediation surface treatments. The project results will also contribute to preventive conservation measures and standards for microclimate control of paintings.

                                                                                                                                                   Osborne House, Isle of Wight, England (English Heritage)