Understanding the trade, production and use of wooden panels for paintings in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century England

Ian Tyers, Dendrochronologist

Making Art in Tudor Britain

Abstract of a paper presented at Tudor and Jacobean Painting: Production, Influences and Patronage
Funded by the British Academy and The Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art

Using extensive data gathered for the analysis of Tudor and Jacobean panels via dendrochronology (including over 90 panels for the National Portrait Gallery), this paper explores a range of issues relating to the trade, production and usage of wooden panels for painted images in England. The trade in oak panels from the Baltic and occasional use of English oak is explored and preliminary evidence regarding the construction of surviving panels is be presented. The paper also sets out some of the evidence for patterns in usage at this period, particularly addressing evidence for the usage time after felling and questions of interpretations for date ranges.