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February 07, 2017 (February 29, 2024)

Ann Hoenigswald, Senior Conservator of Painting (1977–2018)

Ann Hoenigswald
Senior Conservator of Paintings
National Gallery of Art
Photo by Tricia Zigmund © 2013 National Gallery of Art, Washington

Ann Hoenigswald was senior conservator of paintings at the National Gallery of Art from 1977 to 2018. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania in art history and history, and her MA in art conservation from Oberlin College and the Intermuseum Conservation Association.

In her time at the National Gallery in 1977, she treated many masterpieces in the collection. Although she has worked on paintings from the 13th through the 18th centuries, her focus has been on late 19th-century and early modern works. Her treatments of Edouard Manet’s paintings and those of Vincent van Gogh and Pablo Picasso have been widely celebrated. She also finished the restoration of Mary Cassatt’s Little Girl in a Blue Armchair (1878).

She was awarded the Kress Paired Fellowship in Conservation and the History of Art from the National Gallery’s Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts (The Center) (19981999) and was an invited museum scholar at the Getty Center (2011). She was also invited to be the visiting conservator at the Courtauld Institute in London (2012). In addition to treating paintings she has researched the process of painting and the materials and techniques of impressionist and post-impressionist artists as well as early 20th-century painters. Much of her work has been in collaboration with art historians and conservation scientists. Hoenigswald’s published an essay in the catalogue for the Degas/Cassatt exhibition. She has also published on Picasso’s hidden images, Van Gogh’s Self-Portrait, Malevich, matte paint surfaces, 19th-century oil sketches, and the history of restoration in France. She is a frequent contributor and organizer of colloquies and collaborative study days on 19th-century topics.

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