Here at Ankh we are able to offer a rare art facsimile service - the faithful recreation, by hand, of lost, stolen or destroyed works of art. Our specialty remains remaking oil paintings by the old masters, but we are open to commissions of all kinds, in all media. One of our current commissions is the creation of a perfect facsimile of one of Joshua Reynolds' oil portraits, sadly destroyed during the second world war, for display in one of the country's finest historic homes.
We work with the forger's painstaking methods and attention to detail on such projects. We need to become part detective, part historian, and to embody the painters of the past as both skilled craftsmen and gifted artists. We build each facsimile piece by piece, selecting the closest available parallels to the original materials used. We count the threads in canvas samples to find the nearest possible base texture for each painting, we make up the appropriate ground, grind and mix our own mineral paints to original recipes, investigate and blend the right protective surface coatings and even recreate the effects of time, so that the illusion of authenticity and antiquity we create goes far beyond first impressions.
Over the years we have researched and experimented with hundreds of recipes for traditional paints. Understanding and experiencing how historic materials were made and used helps us immeasurably in our analysis of how they respond to time and is crucial to their successful recreation. It is a genuine pleasure to become at once the investigative historian, the forger, the experimental chemist and the painter-stainer, and we are always happy to share our knowledge. Please do contact us to discuss your commission.