Frequently Asked Questions

Welcome to our overview of FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions). Here you can find answers to questions that are most often asked. Should your question not be among them, you are welcome to e-mail us at info@doernerinstitut.pinakothek.de.

I would like to have a painting examined to establish its authenticity or age. Can I have it examined at the Doerner Institut? How long does an appraisal take? How much would it cost?

Only in carefully selected and well-founded specific cases is it possible for the Doerner Institut to make a technological-scientific appraisal of a painting for another museum, authority, the art trade or a private person, in order to establish forgeries, for example. Due to limited capacity lengthy waits of several months must be taken into account. The decision as to whether a request for an appraisal is accepted or turned down lies entirely with the Institut. The best methods to be used and whether samples for laboratory analyses are to be taken, are determined in each individual case. Charges are made for appraisals in line with the actual scope of the examination.

I am going to study/am studying conservation and restoration and would like to complete a pre-study practical/an internship at the Doerner Institut. Is that possible?

The Doerner Institut offers two-year reseach assistantships for graduates in conservation and restoration who have a diploma or master’s degree, immediately after completion of their studies. The positions focus on the fields of Old Masters or Modernism. Since 2015, thanks to the generous support of the Schoof’sche Stiftung a further reseach assistantship is being offered in the conservation department that also incorporates preventive conservation. For more detailed information on internships please contact Jan Schmidt. Posts available are announced in autumn. For current situations vacant please look here
Pre-study practicals in the field of conservation and restoration, as well as practicals for school pupils are, unfortunately, not available.

I’m interested in your work and would like to have a guided tour of the Doerner Institut.

The Doerner Institut is glad to hear of your interest. For staffing and security reasons the Institut can only offer guided tours of its workshops and laboratories to colleagues in the field. We are not able to provide tours to private persons, schools or further education institutions for these reasons. We appreciate your understanding in this matter.
As part of the annual ‘Day of Conservation-Restoration’ held in autumn, our activities and the work we carry out are presented to the public in the form of lectures. The respective programme is publicised well in News.

I am doing research work on an art-technological subject. Can I access relevant literature in your library or comparative material in your archive?

The reference library in the Doerner Institut is reserved for the use of those working at the Institut but is open to specialists by prior arrangement. No works in the library can be taken out on loan.
Our archive can only be accessed by colleagues in the field, exclusively for academic or scientific reasons and by prior arrangement only.

I have painting materials that I would be happy to donate to the Doerner Institut. Would you be interested?

The Doerner Institut is always happy to expand its collection of painting materials which comprises thousands of vessels of historical painting materials and paint tubes, as well as historical colour charts that have been carefully assembled over a period of many decades. The Doerner Institut is especially interested in painting materials from artists’ estates. The collection is an important source for current as well as future research in the field of painting technology. Dated samples are particularly welcome. In certain cases purchases may be possible.

I would like to have a painting restored. Is that possible at the Doerner Institut?

Only works in the holdings of the Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen are restored at the Doerner Institut. However, we also advise private persons on questions of restoration within the scope of our Picture Appraisal Service for the general public.



I am a restorer and would like to be prepared should I ever be confronted with an acid attack. Can you help me?

Two acid attacks on paintings, after which the Doerner Institut was asked for help by freelance restorers, resulted in the publication of an updated instruction sheet on neutralisation with ion exchangers. At the end of the 1980s the Doerner Institut successfully neutralised an acid-damaged panel by Albrecht Dürer using a strong alkaline anion exchange resin from the Lewatit product range (formerly Bayer). The product is no longer available on the market. However, our search for a replacement that produces the same results led us to a weak alkaline anion exchange resin (Lewatit® MP 62, Lanxess Deutschland GmbH) which has the advantage that the preparatory treatment of the exchange resin is much simpler. Lanxess Deutschland kindly provided the Doerner Institut with a large amount of Lewatit® MP 62 free of charge. Restorers may refer to us if they need a small amount to build up a preventive stock, or for acute situations. The ion exchanger can then be sent with a safety data sheet. Our experts in this field would be happy to provide instructions on how to neutralise acid on a damaged work of art at any time.

I am an artist and have problems with a new painting technique or questions about a certain pigment. Can you give me some advice?

The Doerner Institut does not have the capacity to answer questions on painting techniques or materials from private individuals. We appreciate your understanding in this matter.

I have a painting by Max Doerner. Would you be interested in acquiring a work by your founder?

The Doerner Institut does not aim at systematically building up a collection of works by Max Doerner. That said, we may be interested – in certain cases – in self-portraits or studies related to painting techniques by the artist and painting technician.