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Subject: Course on microscopy and microchemical analysis

Course on microscopy and microchemical analysis

From: Cor Mulders <informatiecentrum>
Date: Thursday, July 1, 2004
International ICN course
"Microscopy and microchemical analysis"
International course
Netherlands Institute for Cultural Heritage (ICN)
Location: Instituut Collectie Nederland, Amsterdam
Nov 19, 2004

Content: Introduction to polarised light microscopy and
microchemical tests for the most important pigments. During this
intensive five-day course, the student will learn techniques to
identify the most important pigments used in objects of art. The
study of paint cross-sections will take place in workshops. The
identification of pigments is practised by the students using two
complementary techniques: examination of optical characteristics of
the particles by polarised light microscopy (PLM) and identification
of constituent  chemical elements by conventional (wet)
microchemical (MC) analysis. The course will include various
techniques of micro-sampling from art objects. Participants will be
introduced to the most important aspects of PLM, such as
polarisation, pleochroism, refractive indices, and birefringence.

The reactions of pigments to treatment by acids and bases will be
studied and their identification by specific chemical tests,
including chemical microscopy (formation of specific crystals) and
chemical reactions involving colour changes, will be practised.

Students will prepare a set of reference slides (for future
analysis) to take home. The techniques discussed and practised
provide the participants with a reliable, low-cost, but accurate
means of identification of pigments in very small paint samples.

Target group: Midcareer conservators of paintings, polychrome
sculpture, furniture and decorative arts. Basic knowledge of
chemistry is required. Participants are encouraged to bring sample
materials of their own objects to the class.


    Karin Groen
    BA Senior scientific officer, ICN

    Dr. Arie Wallert
    Museum scientist, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Participants: 8
Study material: Reader, set of tools, reference materials
Price: EURO 895

On request this course can also be organized abroad.

For information contact:

    Netherlands Institute for Cultural Heritage (ICN)
    Angeniet Boeve (angeniet.boeve [at] icn__nl) or
    Monique de Louwere ( [at] icn__nl
    Gabriel Metsustraat 8
    1071 EA Amsterdam
    The Netherlands
    +31 20 3054659
    Fax: +31 20 3054620

Application form:
Date of birth
Fax: Course Title and price
Reasons for application
Place and date

Please send by mail or Fax: to:

    Instituut Collectie Nederland
    Secretariaat Opleidingen
    Fax: +31 20 3054620
    Postcode 76709
    1070 KA Amsterdam
    The Netherlands

Cor Mulders
Netherlands Institute for Cultural Heritage (ICN)
PO Box 76709
1070 KA Amsterdam
The Netherlands
+310 20 3054760
Fax: 310 20 3054700

                  Conservation DistList Instance 18:4
                  Distributed: Thursday, July 1, 2004
                        Message Id: cdl-18-4-018
Received on Thursday, 1 July, 2004

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