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How to Care for Your Artwork

Learn the best practices for preserving and caring for your valuable artwork. This article will explain how to clean and varnish your oil painting for UV protection. 

Watch this video of Erin Hanson explaining how to clean and varnish your oil painting:

Varnishing Original Oil Paintings

Original artwork does not require a layer of varnish to protect it, but it is a good idea. Erin Hanson protects her original oil paintings with a layer of retouching varnish after her pieces are dry to the touch. This retouching varnish allows the painting to continue to breathe and properly cure until the oil is fully dry (a process that takes two or more years.)

Once the original oil painting has been fully dry for two years or more, you can apply a UV Conservator Varnish for added protection against the sun's damaging rays, like putting a pair of sunglasses over your painting. If you own an Erin Hanson original painting, please contact Marggret Leach at or (503) 334-3670 to request your complimentary bottle of varnish and application brush.

More tips to protect your artwork:

  • We recommend having a window professional install clear UV film over the windows in your home where you are hanging valuable artwork.

  • If you are hanging an original oil painting over your fireplace (which is a great place to display a show-stopper piece), make sure your artwork is framed. It also helps to have a fireplace mantle, which blocks potentially damaging heat from the fireplace.

  • When dusting your Erin Hanson painting, use a very soft bristle brush only. (Ask us at The Erin Hanson Gallery to send you a complimentary brush.) Never use microfiber rags, cloth, or paper towels to dust your painting. Never spray Windex or Pledge or any other cleaning solvents near your artwork.

  • To dust your frame: use Q-tips to get in the ledge of the floater frame. To clean the face and sides of the frame, only use a soft rag lightly damp. Do not use any cleaning solvents on the frame.

We Can Help

We are always happy to help, if you have any questions about how to preserve your Erin Hanson original oil painting. Please contact us with any questions.

(503) 334-3670