Sarah is one of the country's leading conservators specialising in British portraiture. Her thesis (1985) on William Larkin (c.1609-1619) broke new ground by developing a methodology of systematic technical examination that is now used in portrait research worldwide. She worked as an Assistant Conservator at the National Portrait Gallery, London, and was a consultant and lecturer for the Tate's monumental 'Dynasties' exhibition (1995). She is now expanding her work on the Constable Research Project to include his portraits. Over the years she has looked after numerous portrait collections ranging from National Trust houses to private family collections. Unpublished and published portraiture research:

  • Thesis: ‘The Materials & Techniques of Jacobean portrait painter William Larkin, c.1609-19’ (unpublished), Conservation and Technology Dept, Courtauld Institute of Art, London, 1985

  • ‘Restoring the English Icon: Portraits by William Larkin’, Sarah Cove & Alan Cummings, in post-prints to Appearance, Opinion, Change: Evaluating the Look of Paintings, AAH/UKIC, 1990, pp 45-9

  • ‘All that glitters…’: William Larkin’s painting materials and techniques, c.1609-19’ in The Suffolk Collection: A catalogue of paintings, ed. L. Houliston, English Heritage, 2012, pp.52-71​


T: +44 (0)1326 373237 • M: +44 (0)7579 039182

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© Sarah Cove ACR 2020