Conservation Department






The Hugh Lane Gallery’s conservation department in partnership with the National Gallery of Ireland hosts the Heritage Council Internship, offering a graduate conservator the opportunity to spend a year developing their skills in the field of paintings conservation in a gallery setting. The previous interns have had the chance to work on artworks by artists such as Rita Duffy, Kathy Prendergast, Niki de Saint Phalle, Günther Uecker and Edward and Nancy Kienholz.


The gallery’s collection is made up of an incredibly diverse range of objects, from ‘traditional’ artworks such as oil paintings on canvas and wood panel, bronze and marble sculptures, stained glass and works on paper, to contemporary artworks incorporating plastics, synthetic paints and time-based media. Conservators at the Hugh Lane take care of this varied collection to preserve artworks and present them in the best possible condition for the enjoyment of visitors to the gallery.

Research and analysis is carried out using a variety of methods such as Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) Spectroscopy, microscopy, ultra-violet fluorescence, and paint analysis and this detective work can tell us a great deal about an artist’s materials and techniques. It can also reveal secrets invisible to the naked eye, such as compositions hidden beneath surface of a painting, changes made by the artist during the making of an object, or evidence of past restoration. We regularly interview living artists to document their process and develop guidelines for preserving and treating their work


Explore our extraordinary collection of modern and contemporary art through our online collection.

Wall of Light Orange Yellow Sean Scully 2000