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The ascertainment of the authenticity of this painting has been carried out with scientific tests on the material and through the study of techniques and signs of wear.In detail: 1) with the spectroscopic dating of the wooden stretcher once proved its originality 2) with stereo microscopic analyses for the study of the painting layer: the drying of the paint binder, the craquelure, the sign left by the stretcher, etc.
Last winter, around the time that plein air landscape painters migrate back into their studios to begin enlarging sketches into larger finished pieces for the coming year’s exhibitions, I was thinking a lot about this painting entitled Lake, Rus by Isaac Levitan.
It’s a large landscape and, like many larger paintings, the artist made a number of small preparatory drawings and oil sketches for the final piece.
There are different approaches for determining the authenticity of antique paintings: - verifying authenticity through a purely stylistic evaluation - verifying the authenticity of a painting by means of objective tests of the ageing of the material - verifying the authenticity of a painting with the use of scientific instrumental methods.
The combined results of the stylistic, material and scientific investigations will permit the establishing of the compatibility of the painting with presumed elements or its inauthenticity.
Cloud Study 1822 Oil on paper, 18 11/16×22 15/16 (47.5×57.5), laid down on synthetic board 1966 (originally laid down on millboard backed with the same paper as used for the top surface). Prov: ...; John Robertson Reid (1851–1926); his sister Flora Macdonald Reid by December 1927 (when recorded in the National Gallery's copy of Holmes 1902: see Davies 1959); sold by her executors, Sotheby's 12 December 1945 (130), bt. Thornes, The Accurate Dating of Certain of John Constable's Cloud Studies 1821/22 Using Historical Weather Records, University College London, Department of Geography, Occasional Papers No.34, 1978, pp.12–13, 27; Hoozee 1979, No.340.