Conservator Patricia Favero to speak Feb. 27

Investigating materials and process in works of Georges Braque

Georges Braque, Still Life With Palette, 1943. Oil on canvas, 23 5/8 x 31 7/8″. Saint Louis Art Museum, Gift of Joseph Pulitzer Jr., 136:1956. © 2012 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris.

I have always been very much engaged and preoccupied by the material, because there is as much sensibility in the technique as in the rest of the picture.
—Georges Braque

With their intricate textures, subtle surface variations and visible reworkings, Georges Braque’s midcareer paintings demonstrate the artist’s profound interest in the painting process and in the possibilities of his materials.

At 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 27, Patricia Favero, associate conservator for The Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C., will discuss Braque’s technique, and what it reveals about his approach to pictorial space, as part of the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts’ spring Public Lecture Series.

X-radiograph of Georges Braque, Still Life with Palette, 1943. Oil on canvas, 23 5/8 x 31 7/8″. Saint Louis Art Museum, Gift of Joseph Pulitzer, Jr., 136:1956. © 2013 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris. X-radiography courtesy of the Saint Louis Art Museum.

The talk, titled “Investigating Material and Process in Georges Braque’s Still-Life Paintings, 1928–1944,” is held in conjunction with the exhibition Georges Braque and the Cubist Still Life, 1928-1945, on view at the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum through April 21.

Organized in conjunction with The Phillips Collection, the exhibition is the first to situate Braque’s work within the cultural and political upheavals leading up to, and through, World War II.

To gain a better understanding of the relationship between Braque’s materials and processes, Favero led a team of conservators and conservation scientists in examining 21 paintings dating between 1928 and 1944. Her lecture will include an overview of the methods employed — which range from simple visual inspection to ultraviolet illumination to X-ray fluorescence spectrometry — as well as new discoveries about Braque’s approach to painting and his mastery of his materials.

Favero, who joined The Phillips Collection as an advanced fellow in 2004, specializes in the conservation of paintings and the study of the materials and methods of modern painters. At the Phillips, she has carried out technical studies on works by Pablo Picasso, Paul Klee and Henri Rousseau, and has assisted with the study of works by Edgar Degas and Wassily Kandinsky.

The talk will take place in Steinberg Hall Auditorium, located near the intersection of Skinker and Forsyth boulevards. A reception for Favero will precede the lecture, at 6 p.m., in the Kemper Art Museum.

In addition, Favero will lead a workshop on conservation techniques from 10 a.m. to noon Thursday, Feb. 28. The event is free, but space is limited and advance registration is required.

For more information, call (314) 935-9300 or visit