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Microanalysis of pigments in art works

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    0441809 - ÚACH 2015 RIV ES eng C - Conference Paper (international conference)
    Hradil, David - Hradilová, J.
    Microanalysis of pigments in art works.
    Archaeometry and cultural heritage: the contribution of mineralogy. Madrid: Sociedad Española de Mineralogía, 2012, s. 79-90. ISSN 1698-5478.
    [Reunión de la Sociedad Española de Mineralogía /32./. Bilbao (ES), 27.06.2012]
    Institutional support: RVO:61388980
    Keywords : materials analysis * microanalysis * painted artworks
    Subject RIV: CA - Inorganic Chemistry

    This paper summarizes the current knowledge concerning the materials analysis of painted artworks. In the introduction materials analysis is interrelated with other disciplines within a broad context of the research of cultural heritage. Current methodological and instrumental developments in the area are described with a special attention given to non-invasive analytical methods. The article also briefly deals with the relation of natural science, technology and humanities in the investigation and conservation of the fine art. In more detail historical painting techniques are discussed and paint layers are described as composed materials containing both organic and inorganic compounds in characteristic layer sequences. The aim of materials microanalysis of paints is to get both technological and materials signatures, which both could be specific for the period, region or workshop. Therefore the identification of organic and inorganic materials in paints should always be accompanied by the description of the layer stratigraphy and finding other detailed characteristics that relate to the origin of the painting. Mineralogy plays an important role in the analysis of paint layers, because the majority of historical pigments are minerals. When using the tools of mineralogical analysis, particularly the X-ray diffraction methods, one can get an idea of the process of formation and/or fabrication of pigments and its regional provenance. It also helps to identify the provenance of the painting itself. A substantial part of this paper deals with the mineralogical analysis of historical pigments. Carefully selected case studies demonstrate the usefulness of the method to solve important tasks of the origin of artworks.
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