Lining and Relining

The terms lining and relining, while similar, refer to two different procedures. Attaching a backing to a previously unlined painting is called lining. Attaching a new backing to an older, deteriorating canvas is called relining.

The primary goal in the lining process is to save the painting without altering it in any way, and provide new support to the painting, which allows the conservator to repair any existing problems, always assuring reversibility if needed in the future.

Choosing the correct adhesive to bind the new lining to the painting is important, as well as matching the weave and thread count of the previous canvas. New synthetic adhesives have helped improve the lining process because they are not water based and do not react to humidity. Artificial resin adhesives can be used for hot or cold lining. Although hot lining has been used for centuries, cold lining with low pressure applied was first used in the 1970s.

Costs vary widely for a lining and relining, depending on the nature of the problem and the age of the painting. Susan Brown is experienced in lining and relining.