Technique and condition
The paint was applied exclusively by brush in distinct layers, allowing for the previous layer to dry thoroughly before the next one was applied. The palette used on this work is rather limited, consisting of an initial light blue 'imprimatura' layer followed by an overall black coating on both paintings. Then the horizontal stripes were painted, with a deep blue colour on the left painting and a deep plum colour on the right one. The horizontal lines were achieved by applying the paint between strips of masking tape. Unlike the other paints, these paints show very visible vertical brush strokes (despite the horizontal orientation of the lines). All the paints would have had a vehicular and fairly paste-like consistency and were probably used straight from the tube, although the deep blue and plum paints would have had a much thicker consistency than the black and light blue paints. All the colours are opaque and exhibit a reasonably high gloss. The very clean and crisp edges to the paint layers on both outer vertical edges were also achieved using masking tape, which was removed after all the paint layers had been applied. Masking tape was actually applied around all the tacking margins prior to painting, but has not been removed from the other six edges.
The painting has no varnish layer and is not framed. Both paintings are in excellent condition. The strainers are providing a good and rigid support and the paint layers are unchanged. Providing the correct precautions are taken when transporting and handling the works, they should remain in this pristine state for a considerable time.