Publication
Title
Neutron activation autoradiography and scanning macro-XRF of Rembrandt van Rijn's Susanna and the Elders (Gemaldegalerie Berlin) : a comparison of two methods for imaging of historical paintings with elemental contrast
Author
Abstract
Imaging methods with elemental contrast are of great value for the investigation of historical paintings, as they allow for study of sub-surface layers that provide insight into a painting's creation process. Two of the most important methods are neutron activation autoradiography (NAAR) and scanning macro-XRF (MA-XRF). Given the differences between these methods in the fundamental physical phenomena exploited, a theoretical comparison of their capabilities is difficult and until now a critical comparison of their use on the same painting is missing. In this paper, we present a study of Rembrandt van Rijn's painting Susanna and the Elders from the Gemaldegalerie in Berlin employing both techniques. The painting features a considerable number of overpainted features and a wide range of pigments with different elemental tracers, including earth pigments (Mn/Fe), Azurite (Cu), lead white (Pb), vermilion (Hg) and smalt (Co, As). MA-XRF can detect all elements above Si (Z = 14), suffers from few spectral overlaps and can be performed in a few tens of hours in situ, i.e. in a museum. NAAR requires the stay of the painting at a research facility for several weeks, and inter-element interferences can be difficult to resolve. Also, only a limited number of elements contribute to the acquired autoradiographs, most notably Mn, Cu, As, Co, Hg and P. However, NAAR provides a higher lateral resolution and is less hindered by absorption in covering layers, which makes it the only method capable of visualizing P in lower paint layers.
Language
English
Source (journal)
Applied physics A: materials science & processing. - Heidelberg
Publication
Heidelberg : 2015
ISSN
0947-8396
Volume/pages
119:3(2015), p. 795-805
ISI
000354189200001
Full text (Publisher's DOI)
Full text (publisher's version - intranet only)
UAntwerpen
Faculty/Department
Research group
[E?say:metaLocaldata.cgzprojectinf]
Structure analysis of hard and soft condensed matter using synchrotron radiation (ESRF-DUBBLE).
Publication type
Subject
Affiliation
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Web of Science
Record
Identification
Creation 11.06.2015
Last edited 02.08.2017
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