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NICAS Colloquium Online

24 June 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm CEST


We are pleased to announce a new, online edition of the NICAS colloquium on Thursday 24 June 2021 from 12.00 to 13.00 hrs. The colloquium will take place online through Microsoft Teams


Throughout the year, NICAS organises a bi-weekly Colloquium consisting of two short research lectures. It provides researchers with the opportunity to present ideas for, updates on or results of their activities. The NICAS Colloquium allows people to stay informed on a regular basis about the latest developments and results of research and to exchange information and expertise.



The chair of this colloquium will be Anna Krekeler (Rijksmuseum)


The presenters are:


 Antonio Iaccarino Idelson – The determination of the value of tension of canvas paintings through the impulse of a sound wave.  Outline of a PhD research.



Canvas paintings are intimately connected with their stretchers and they often conflict on one specific subject: tension. Tension regulates the appearance of the painting, avoiding distortions, but it also regulates the conservation of the paint layers. Insufficient tension is often perceived as a problem because of its visible effects, but excessive tension is the main cause of cracks and other structural problems.

Methods exist to install a canvas painting on a stretcher using a known value of tension but, in a world in which conservation science can measure almost everything, a non-destructive technique to measure the tension of a painting on its original stretcher is still missing.
Access to the value of tension would greatly improve the comprehension of the deterioration processes and would help building priorities in preventive conservation planning.

The lecture will guide you into a PhD research aiming at this goal, based on relatively simple tools and an incremental, collaborative approach.



Antonio Iaccarino Idelson is an art conservator based in Rome, Italy, with a degree from Istituto Centrale per il Restauro. CEO and co-founder of Equilibrarte, he works on paintings, wall paintings and sculptures. Through profession and dedicated research, he gained relevant expertise in the use of composite materials and 3D-design based structures for conservation and display of works of art.

He has been doing research on the effects of tension in canvas paintings and their mechanical behavior since 1992, and published a book on the subject in 2004. Currently a PhD candidate with Dr. Roger Groves as Promoter, at the Faculty of Aerospace Engineering of the Technical University Delft, with a research project entitled “The determination of the value of tension of canvas paintings through the impulse of a sound wave”.

He has been teaching conservation related subjects in university programs since 2002, and is currently consulting with the Getty Conserving Canvas initiative.



 Nouchka de Keyser – Reviving the yellow rose: A combined macro- and microscale chemical imaging approach to study the original and current condition of the yellow rose in a still life painting by Abraham Mignon



The yellow rose in Still life with Flowers and a Watch (c. 1660-1679) by Abraham Mignon, from the collection of the Rijksmuseum, has been a noted concern for arsenic pigment degradation. The flower now lacks depth, and the paint surface looks broken up and degraded compared to the better-preserved flowers.  This research aimed to gain an in-depth 3D understanding of the transformation of the original intended appearance of the yellow rose into the degraded current state. This talk will present the results from the combined micro and macroscopic approach, using Macro X-ray fluorescence (MA-XRF) scanning, Macro X-ray Powder diffraction (MA-XRPD) imaging, reflectance imaging spectroscopy in the visible to near-infrared (400-1000 nm) and, synchrotron micro-XRPD.



Nouchka De Keyser is a junior researcher at the science department of the Rijksmuseum within operation Night Watch and a PhD student at the AXES research group of the University of Antwerp. Her research focuses on 17th-century paint technology and tries to gain a comprehensive understanding of how and why particular optical effects are systematically more affected by degradation using non-invasive imaging techniques. In 2016, she obtained her master’s in conservation-restoration at the University of Antwerp, worked as a project associate for the paint sample database at the Rijksmuseum, and was an independent researcher for the NWO funded project: Frans Hals/Not Frans Hals.

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24 June 2021
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm CEST
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