Netherlands Institute for Conservation, Art and Science

NICAS Colloquium

28June2018 12:00 - 13:00


The next edition of the NICAS Colloquium takes place on Thursday, 28 June 2018, from 12:00 to 13:00 in conference room B of the Atelier Building (Hobbemastraat 22, Amsterdam).


The chair of this colloquium will be Carolina Salis Gomes (RCE).


The following presentations are scheduled for this edition of the NICAS Colloquium:

Yuliia Orlova

Networks in Oil Paintings

Conservation of old oil paintings has always been a challenging task due to enormous complexity of the materials used by artists. Linseed oil is known to be the most common binder dating from 15th century. It polymerizes at room temperature and forms hard films of paint. These films are nothing but complex polymer networks that constantly interact with pigment particles. These systems are highly unstable and even after centuries they undergo various chemical transformations. We chose to use a complex networks approach to capture the dynamics of chemical processes in the binding medium of paintings. We developed a methodology that reconstructs all monomer states and tracks the reaction pathways between them. Solving the kinetic model of the system we know how the states of these monomers are populated over time and track the functional groups that might influence the degradation process.

Yuliia Orlova obtained a Master’s degree in ‘Mathematical Modelling in Engineering’ from Gdansk University of Technology. Currently she is a PhD candidate in the NICAS project ‘Predicting aging of oil networks’.

Annelies van Loon

MA-XRF imaging of two large paintings in the galleries of the Rijksmuseum: The Meagre Company (1637) by Frans Hals/Pieter Codde, and Claudius Civilis (1661-62) by Rembrandt

In 2017, macro X-ray fluorescence (MA-XRF) imaging of The Meagre Company, a large Militia painting started by Frans Hals and finished by Pieter Codde, was carried out in the galleries of the Rijksmuseum using the Bruker M6 mobile scanner. Museum visitors could watch the scanning process from a safe distance. MA-XRF reveals the various chemical elements of the paint. From this it can be determined which pigments were used. This yields more specific information about the steps in the actual painting process and the division of labor between the two painters. Also the Claudius Civilis was scanned in the galleries of the Rijksmuseum. Here, MA-XRF, complemented with hyperspectral imaging and cross-section analyses, provides new insights in the use of the pigment smalt (now largely discolored), as well as Rembrandt’s radical changes to the composition. In this talk, some first results will be presented.

Annelies van Loon trained as a chemist and a paintings conservator. Currently she holds a position as paintings research scientist at the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, where she develops and applies non-invasive imaging techniques.

NICAS Colloquium

More information about the NICAS Colloquium can be found here.



Thursday, 28 June 2018


12:00 – 13:00 hrs


Conference Room B, Atelier Building
Hobbemastraat 22, Amsterdam

Published by  NICAS