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Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando

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Category :
Civilizations : Greece, Roman time, Middel Age, Renaissance
Description : The Real Academia conducted a four-year project to recover one of the oldest and largest collections of antique plaster casts in Europe. A significant part of the collection was acquired by Diego Velazquez for Phillip IV during his journey through Italy in 1649-51. Many had been restored in the 18th century and later, giving them a special documentary value. Some forty casts of sculptures from the Villa dei Papiri near Herculaneum were produced for Carlos III in 1764. A third group of a hundred casts, assembled by the painter Anton Raphael Mengs, was bequeathed to that same king. The restoration methodology included the stratigraphic analysis of the surface. A complete catalogue of plaster material, waxes and pigments was established, providing extensive information on the history of the casts and techniques employed. The experience led to the development of new techniques for cleaning plaster surfaces, including the reinforcement of polymers. Gammagraphic study of the interior structure has provided valuable information on the various techniques employed to reinforce the casts through the use of iron, bronze, bone or wood pieces. This led to the identification of different workshops active in Rome, Florence or Naples at different times. Six rooms in the Academia were adapted in terms of humidity and temperature control to ensure optimal preservation conditions for a permanent exhibition. This collection, which constitutes an encyclopaedia ante lettera, is once again available for the study of art history and the training of students in drawing techniques.
Creating year : ca 1649-1651
Modification year : 2005-2007
Cast Number : ca 140
Bibliography : Antonella PAMPALONE, La collezone di gessi di Anton Raphael Mengs alla Reale Accademia di San Fernando a Madrid, in Gli ateliers degli scultori.Atti delle Secondo Convegno sulle gipsoteche, Possagno 24-25 ottobre 2008, (Fondazione Canova),2010, pp.261-304.
Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando
Alcalá 13
Spain - Europe
Status : Academy (Fine Arts)

Phone : +34 915 240 864
Mail :
Website :
Julio López Hernandez