Artist dating a scientist

All the above features are typical of an authentic craquelure which has formed naturally and begin to be noticeable about The microscopic examination of the signature (macro photos no.7, and no.8) evidenced its uniformity with the rest of the painting: it can be seen, in fact, that the colour has worn to the same degree, especially in the more protruding areas, and has not penetrated into the fissures of the craquelure as would have been the case if the signature had been inscribed onto a painted surface that was already old.

Examination under Woods light also showed that the reactions of the signature were comparable to those of the rest of the painting (photo no.9 taken under Woods light).

Thanks to the laboratory's modern equipment, a painting can be subjected to analysis using infrared reflectography, Wood's light, a stereoscopic microscope, IR spectroscopy and other instrumental techniques.3 e 4 - Microscopic analysis to examine the signs of ageing in the paint layer: the nature of the craquelure (natural or artificial - deep or superficial), the pigments (crystallinity, purity and size), restoration and other factors.

Wood's light and monochromatic lights permit an evaluation of the extent to which the painting has been restored, touched up and overpainted, as well as the identification of various fluorescent substances.7, 8 e 9 - Infrared reflectography permits an in-depth examination of the painting bringing to light underdrawings or grids, pentimenti, the depth of the craquelure, and identification of restoration work or the use of different materials.

In the past, when called on to appraise and attribute a painting, art experts examined only the surface under natural light.

A superficial examination of this kind was sufficient, however, because it was artistic style and technique they were looking fact that today, as in the future, it is often impossible to attribute a work to an author with certainty, induces the thought that current art appraisal methods are all to the advantage of the market.

The most recent catalogue on the determination of authenticity in art, published by the same in June 2007, contains an exclusive six-page presentation of the scientific laboratory of the Museo d Arte e Scienza in which its methods for dating paintings, furniture, and objects in ivory and other materials are illustrated in detail and their validity, in effect, endorsed.

The Museum laboratorys mission is to improve existing scientific methods and elaborate new methods for the ascertainment of the authenticity of art objects.The ascertainment of the authenticity of this painting has been carried out with scientific tests on the material and through the study of techniques and signs of wear.In detail: 1) with the spectroscopic dating of the wooden stretcher once proved its originality 2) with stereo microscopic analyses for the study of the painting layer: the drying of the paint binder, the craquelure, the sign left by the stretcher, etc.It was noted in particular that in the case of the two side strips making up the stretcher there is a perfect correspondence between the holes currently present in the canvas and the holes in the underlying stretcher.Attached please find photos of the two sides with a red arrow showing the holes in the canvas which match those in the stretcher underneath (photos no.2, no.3 and no.4).

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