Skip to main content

Artemisia Gentileschi's Self Portrait as Saint Catherine of Alexandria was one of the most exciting additions to the collection, when it was acquired in 2018. 

Before it went on display, the painting underwent conservation. Each stage of the treatment was documented and discussed in a series of short films, led by our Head of Conservation, Larry Keith, and colleagues in Curatorial, Conservation and Framing: 

14 videos

The art restoration plan for Artemisia Gentileschi's 'Self Portrait'

1
2:28

Cleaning Artemisia Gentileschi's 'Self Portrait'

2
5:45

"It's such a 17th century thing to do"

3
2:23

Who was Artemisia Gentileschi?

4
5:03

Finishing the clean

5
7:56

Repairing a 17th century canvas

6
5:58

Applying the moisture treatment

7
5:05

Finishing the relining

8
7:46

Reconstructing the unusual composition of Artemisia's 'Self Portrait'

9
6:23

'It's True, It's True, It's True': Becoming Artemisia Gentileschi

10
16:15

Retouching a 17th century painting

11
9:40

Choosing a frame

12
12:38

Framing Artemisia

13
7:59

Artemisia Gentileschi's 'Self Portrait' goes on display

14
3:50

Learn more about Artemisia's Self Portrait as Saint Catherine of Alexandria and zoom into the painting in detail. 

Here is how the painting appeared when it first came to the Gallery, and how it looks after conservation:

Image: Before and after conservation treatment in 2018: Artemisia Gentileschi, 'Self Portrait as Saint Catherine of Alexandria', about 1615–17

The conservation treatment was made possible by Art Fund support.

Be the first to hear our latest stories
From peeks behind the scenes to in-depth looks at the nation's favourite paintings
Sign up

More about Artemisia and conservation at the Gallery

Watch how it took a small army of people to clean, repair and restore one of our largest paintings, Van Dyck's 'Equestrian Portrait of Charles I'
An altarpiece in need of attention
One of the most complex structural conservation projects in the history of the Gallery: Giovanni Martini da Udine’s ‘The Virgin and Child with Saints’
Who was Artemisia?
Self-assured and determined, passionate and sometimes vulnerable, Artemisia’s voice is brought to life through her words and personal letters
Artemisia was famed for painting women of strength, passion and vulnerability: meet Susannah, Judith, Cleopatra, Lucretia and Esther
15 years after discovering a hidden drawing beneath Leonardo’s Virgin of the Rocks, we uncover more of the mystery
X
/
Y