'Reading Lesson' c. 1930, by Roland Wakelin

Oil on canvas, adhered to Masonite. Private collection.


This painting, by renowned Australian/New Zealand artist Roland Wakelin, is an intimate portrait of the artist’s daughter and grandson. The painting had suffered extensive, water-related damage, causing delamination of the paint layer from the canvas support.


Flaking/unstable paint was consolidated prior to lining onto a synthetic fabric support. Once the paint was secure, losses in the composition were reintegrated using conservation-grade materials.

Treatment stages

Figure 1

Painting in raking light before treatment, revealing extensive flaking and lifting paint.

Figure 2

Detail of painting in raking light, before treatment.

Figure 3

Detail of painting before treatment, showing active flaking.

Figure 4

Painting after treatment.

Figure 5

Detail of painting after treatment.

Figure 6

Detail of painting after treatment.