Unexpected finding of Egyptian blue emerged in Raphael’s fresco Triumph of Galatea at Villa Farnesina, in Rome. This pigment is the oldest man-made blue, dating back to Egyptians who manufactured it first and whose occurrence was thought to be lost with Romans. Thanks to advanced imaging techniques it has been possible to non-invasively map its distribution throughout the frescoed surface and to obtain a non-invasive imaging stratigraphic analysis indicating whether pure painting layers, mixtures or overlapping occurred. Egyptian blue identification on Raphael’s Galatea is so far the earliest of sixteenth century, and could be the first step towards its tracking in Renaissance, demonstrating that non-invasive techniques are a mandatory step not only for materials identification but also for understanding art history and its dynamics.

Imaging the antique: unexpected Egyptian blue in Raphael’s Galatea by non-invasive mapping

Seccaroni C.;
2020

Abstract

Unexpected finding of Egyptian blue emerged in Raphael’s fresco Triumph of Galatea at Villa Farnesina, in Rome. This pigment is the oldest man-made blue, dating back to Egyptians who manufactured it first and whose occurrence was thought to be lost with Romans. Thanks to advanced imaging techniques it has been possible to non-invasively map its distribution throughout the frescoed surface and to obtain a non-invasive imaging stratigraphic analysis indicating whether pure painting layers, mixtures or overlapping occurred. Egyptian blue identification on Raphael’s Galatea is so far the earliest of sixteenth century, and could be the first step towards its tracking in Renaissance, demonstrating that non-invasive techniques are a mandatory step not only for materials identification but also for understanding art history and its dynamics.
Egyptian blue
Macro X-ray fluorescence (MAXRF)
Non-invasive analyses
Raphael
Red-induced luminescence (RIL)
Villa farnesina
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12079/56369
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