Painting Hazards

Studio Solvent Policy

Solvents, even "odorless" solvents, pose a serious health threat to everyone in the studio. Whenever possible solvents should be avoided. Using water miscible oils or cleaning brushes with oil followed by a wash in soap and water (see articles below) will help to reduce exposure. In addition the two back rooms have special ventilation that was installed specifically to vent hazardous fumes.

ALL PAINTERS WHO USE SOLVENTS other than water must use one of the two back rooms and ensure that the exhaust fans are turned on. The exhaust fan switches are next to the light switches and are marked and protected from accidental switching by a cover. The exhaust fan in the room with the lockers and drying racks can and should be left on at all times. Please dispose of solvent soaked rags or paper towels in the trash cans in the back rooms only and avoid disposing of large quantities of soaked rags or paper towels. Please dispose of used solvent in the closed containers provided. Please cover your solvent containers unless actually dipping a brush in them.

By following these simple guidelines we can make our studio environment safer for everyone.

In addition, the following solvents and chemicals are extremely hazardous and cannot be used anywhere in the studio:

Any product that contains:

Narragansett Bay Commission Best Practices talks about one group's approach to safety.

Below are links to the MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheets) for many of the solvents commonly used by oil painters:


Latest Update: 04/22/2017