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NICAS Colloquium Online

8 December 2022 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm CET

We are pleased to announce a new, online edition of the NICAS colloquium on Thursday 8 December 2022 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 is Benjamin Rous (NICAS)


The presenters are:


 Paul van LaarIntACT: An interactive tool for visualising the interior of art objects
(See also: INTACT project)



Investigations into cultural heritage objects are most often focused on external features. While this is not surprising, simply due to ease of access, the interior often holds as many secrets at least! From traces of toolmarks that inform us about studio practice and making processes, to tree rings that allow for dating and attributing objects: unveiling an artwork’s internal structure may help uncover a myriad of aspects of an artwork previously hidden from the eye. The NICAS-funded IntACT project set out to create a visualisation tool that combines 3D surface scans with CT scans, to allow for an intuitive exploration of interior features of an object for any cultural heritage professional.



Paul van Laar is a PhD fellow at Research Unit VICARTE (Glass and Ceramics for the Arts) and the department of conservation and restoration at FCT NOVA, Lisbon. The research focuses on the production, trade, and use of smalt and its relation to other blue cobalt-containing glassy materials in Early Modern Europe. Prior to this, he developed a tool for the interactive inspection of 3D surface scans and CT scans of cultural heritage objects, in a shared project between the Rijksmuseum and CWI. He also designed an online database for the Down to the Ground project, and made reconstructions within the Glass in Paint project.



Thijs Hagendijk – Furnace Construction and Fire Management as Artisanal and Ecological Practice in Early Modern Europe



Constructing furnaces and managing fire demanded serious skill and knowledge. While the importance of the historical ‘art of fire’ is recognized in material culture studies, I am starting a project that specifically traces how artisanal pyrotechnics developed in response to the changing relation between humans and their environment, including the early energy transition towards fossil fuels, concerns over wood shortages and air pollution in Early Modern Europe. I am looking to combine historical research with the interdisciplinary and collaborative reconstruction and re-operation of historical furnaces to analyze how the interplay between environment, pyrotechnology and artisanal demands shaped the quality, condition, and material composition of historical artefacts.



Thijs Hagendijk is a lecturer in technical art history at Utrecht University. He studies the material and experimental cultures of artisanal and (al)chemical workshops in Early Modern Europe. In 2020, Thijs defended his dissertation on this topic. A characteristic of his research is the purposeful employment of performative methods such as historical reconstructions and historical experimentation. Thijs published on the use of these performative methods in the humanities and social sciences, as well as on the historical interplay between practical historical texts and material culture.

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8 December 2022
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm CET
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