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Public Lecture—Don't Fade Away: Saving the Vivid Yellows of Matisse and Van Gogh

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Published on Oct 22, 2013

Lecture Date: Tuesday October 1st. Jennifer Mass of the Winterthur Museum in Wilmington, Delaware, delivered the SLAC public lecture, "Don't Fade Away: Saving the Vivid Yellows of Matisse and Van Gogh."

Mass has used X-rays generated at the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource to study the fading yellows in paintings by the famous Impressionist painter Henri Matisse, and she discusses that work as well as other research techniques delving into the degradation of several yellow pigments in paintings by such masters as Matisse, Vincent Van Gogh, Georges Seurat, Edvard Munch and many of their contemporaries.

Mass recently co-edited a volume on handheld X-ray fluorescence applications in art and archaeology and co-organized two symposia on the application of synchrotron-based methodologies to the study of artifacts of importance to our cultural heritage. Scientists at SSRL have already contributed to such research, with groundbreaking studies of the Archimedes Palimpsest, investigations into a mysterious Chinese pigment known as "Han Purple" and a revealing look at Attic pottery. Lecturer: Jennifer Mass, Winterthur Museum

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