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This sample was collected from a heavily overpainted back of the kneeling woman in the bottom right corner. The red-brown ground contains iron oxides, calcium, and alumino-silicates (Fe, Ca, Al, Si, O, Mg, Mn) while the uppermost layer of overpaint contains Zinc White (Zn), a pigment that was not available to artists until the 19th century. Spot analysis of red and yellow pigment particles mixed into the original lead-containing paint layers confirmed the presence of vermillion (Hg) and lead-antimonate yellow, most likely Naples Yellow (Pb, Sb). Top Left: Visible light/200x magnification;<br/><br/><i>Top Right: BSE image/302x magnification; Bottom left and right: EDS elemental maps (Major Elements: Pb, O, Si, Ca, Al, Zn, Fe; Trace: K, Mg, Mn, Hg, Sb)</i>
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Date: 2013-12-25
This sample was collected from the green-colored cushion on King Saul's throne before removal of the degraded surface coating. The red-brown ground contains iron oxides, calcium, and alumino-silicates (Fe, Ca, Al, Si, O, Mg, Mn); the upper ground layer contains more iron and manganese than the lower layer, indicating a higher concentration of earth colors/umbers in the second ground application. The presence of green earth particles was confirmed by the detection of high levels of silica (Si) and moderate to low levels of iron (Fe).<br/><br/><i>Top Left: Ultraviolet light/200x magnification; Top Right: BSE image/217x magnification; Bottom left and right: EDS elemental maps (Major Elements: Si, O, Ca, Al, Fe; Trace: K, S, Mg, Mn)</i>
timeline view   simple view
Date: 2013-12-25
This sample was collected from Abner's yellow ptergues (leather straps worn at the waist by Roman soldiers). The red-brown ground contains iron oxides, calcium, and alumino-silicates (Fe, Ca, Al, Si, O, Mg, Mn); the upper ground layer contains more iron and manganese than the lower layer, indicating a higher concentration of earth colors/umbers in the second ground application. The upper paint layers contain lead white (Pb) and yellow iron oxides (Fe, O). Top Left: Visible light/200x magnification;<br/><br/><i>Top Right: BSE image/399x magnification; Bottom left and right: EDS elemental maps (Major Elements: Si, O, Ca, Pb, Al, Fe; Trace: K, S, Mg, Mn)</i>
timeline view   simple view
Date: 2013-12-25
This sample was collected from the green-colored mountains in the distant background after removal of the overpaint and degraded surface coating. The red-brown ground contains iron oxides, calcium, and alumino-silicates (Fe, Ca, Al, Si, O, Mg, Mn). The paint layer contains lead white (Pb), earth colors (Fe, Si, O), and lead-antimonate (Pb, Sb). The presence of green earth particles was confirmed by the detection of high levels of silica (Si) and moderate to low levels of iron (Fe). A few yellow particles were found to contain lead and antimony (Pb, Sb) pointing towards the presence of Naples Yellow, however a large whitish agglomerate appeared to contain lead, antimony, and high levels of silica (Si). It may be that a range of lead-antimonate particles were used, with some possessing more of a "glassier" nature than others. Colored glass has been found in Italian Renaissance and Baroque paintings.<br/><br/><i>Top Left: Visible light/200x magnification; Top Right: BSE image/2124x magnification; Bottom left and right: EDS elemental maps (Major Elements: Si, O, Pb, Al, Ca, Fe; Trace: K, Mg, Sb)</i>
timeline view   simple view
Date: 2013-12-25
The red-brown ground contains iron oxides, calcium, and alumino-silicates (Fe, Ca, Al, Si, O, Mg, Mn). Multiple paint layers were found to contain lead-antimonate yellow (Pb, Sb), lead white (Pb), and earth colors (Fe, Si, O, Mn). The presence of phosphorous in the black paint layer indicates the presence of bone black (P). Images obtained using x-radiography confirmed that these colored paint layers beneath the black most likely correspond to a hidden figure that is present beneath the shield. Top Left: Visible light/200x magnification;<br/><br/><i>Top Right: BSE image/997x magnification; Bottom left and right: EDS elemental maps (Major Elements: Si, O, Pb, Al, Ca, Fe; Trace: K, Mg, Sb)</i>
timeline view   simple view
Date: 2013-12-25
Continued cleaning and consolidation on upper section of painting. Began consolidation and overpaint/varnish removal throughout top half of painting.
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Date: 2014-01-01
Date: 2014-01-06
Continued cleaning and consolidation on upper half of painting. Significant portions of the sky and background architecture were found to be heavily overpainted (Pictured here: Ellen Nigro).
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Date: 2014-01-07
Removal of darkened, discolored overpaint and blanched varnish revealed a beautifully executed head depicting an older soldier.
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Date: 2014-01-07
Significant areas of blanched varnish were found covering sections of the flowers, particularly the green leaves that were painted using green earth or terre verte
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Date: 2014-01-07
Viewing the painting using oblique, raking light helps to illuminate areas that remain covered by the thick, glossy varnish and overpaint. In this image only Abner's head, neck, and clothing has been cleaned.
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Date: 2014-01-07
In normal visible light other details were noted during the cleaning process. Curious striations and patterns became visible throughout Abner's head and neck; upon closer inspection the team realized that the artist had made a significant change in this area of the composition. From the tiny losses in Abner's face it is possible to detect a cool, grey color coming from underlying paint layers. Read more in the Infrared Reflectography and X-Radiography sections.)
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Date: 2014-01-10