Between January 27th and February 3th the RICH team has been working together with the scientists and conservators of the J.P. Getty Museum and Research Institute in Los Angeles. Various artifacts of the Museum collection have been monitored and studied with Photometric Stereo such as medieval manuscripts, master drawings, bookbindings and daguerreotypes.
A daguerreotype by Jacob Byerly (1807-1883); left full image made with the White Light Microdome; middle a detail with raking light; right same detail with shaded filter showing degradation. Click on the image to enlarge; collection J. P. Getty Museum
Both White Light and Multi-Spectral Microdomes have been used. The RICH Project, the technical background and the research targets have been highlighted the on February 2nd during the lecture: Microdomes and Manuscripts: Multi-Spectral and Photometric Stereo Imaging for Illuminations, Drawings and Documentary Heritage. After the lecture, a hands-on workshop was given at the Imaging Studio of the Getty Center.
Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta (Georg Bocskay & Joris Hoefnaegel, 1561-62), folio 33; image with White Light Microdome, collection Getty Museum
Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta (Georg Bosky & Joris Hoefnaegel, 1561-62), detail, folio 33; Multi-Spectral Microdome; top left shaded filter; top middle Infrared light (850 nm); top right Red light (623 nm); below left Green light (523 nm); below middle Blue light (460 nm), below right UV light (365 nm)
In preparation of workshop on Historical Embroidered Bookbindings at the Special Collections of the University of Amsterdam this summer, the RICH team monitored 15 precious historic bookbindings (16th – 19th century) with delicate needlework on velvet, silk and satin last week. The imaging was done with the white led microdome and with the multispectral microdome. Weaving, stitching and embroidering techniques were revealed in great detail, taking the researchers view through the eye of the needle.
Results will be presented during the 3-Days Seminar on Embroidered Bindings, Wednesday 19 – Friday 21 August, Summer School History of the Book at the Special Collections of the University of Amsterdam, Oude Turfmarkt 129, 17-28 August 2015. See: http://bijzonderecollecties.uva.nl/en/what-s-on/events/content/events/2014/08/summer-school-history-of-the-book.html
KU Leuven, MS1993, folio 008R with normal and IR light; folio 045R with visual and false color IR
In May 2015 the KU Leuven University Library acquired a unique illuminated manuscript from the Celestine monastery of Arenberg (Leuven, Belgium). The title “Preparationes ante missam” (“Preparations for the mass ‘) was written and illuminated in 1582 in the Celestine monastery in Heverlee, Leuven by the later prior Petrus Angeli. The manuscript is remarkably small in size (100 x 65 mm), and has 34 illuminations. At the beginning of the book Angeli painted eight heraldic weapons, held by female figures, angels, soldiers or ‘wildemannen ‘, followed with sixteen full-page miniatures. They are meticulously painted in warm and brilliant colors and finished with shell gold, depicting scenes of the Old and New Testament. The dedication miniature on folio 45 refers to the Croy’s family, members of the Knights of the Golden Fleece.
Last week the manuscript was examined in the Imaging Lab of the University Library with the new Multispectral Microdome developed in the framework of the RICH project. First conclusions are that the ‘cartouches’ and the coat of arms in the manuscript remained blank and were never overpainted. Moreover, the results showed with IR light that there was no underdrawing made with a carbon based medium, but probably some outline drawing of very small individual figures by a transfer technique. The false color imaging of folio 045r revealed a complex mixed color palette, characteristic for the late 16th century illumination technique. The coming academic year, the newly arrived manuscript will be examined and analyzed to reveal it’s hidden features.
The past days (May 11-13) the RICH team organized a workshop on multispectral imaging at the Imaging Lab of the University Library KU Leuven, which coincides with the implementation of the Multispectral Microdome. Mike Toth, Bill Christens-Barry and Alberto Campagnolo set up their imaging system for multispectral capture developed during the Archimedes Palimpsest project. Eric Joakim of Phase One kindly provided an IQ260 Achromatic digital back and IXR camera for capture.
Mike Toth, Lieve Watteeuw, Alberto Campagnolo, Bruno Vandermeulen, Bill Christens-Barry and Eric Joakim, photo Mike Toth
Western and eastern paper, parchment and papyrus documents and archaeological objects such as Egyptian execration statuettes were monitored. These objects were captured through 16 different spectral bands, ranging from UV to IR. We were specifically looking at censored, deleted and faded texts, pictorial layers and false color visualisation of polychrome layers of medieval illuminations.
The Timbuktu manuscripts, which are being researched and digitized at the moment at the Imaging Lab, were also the focus of attention.
Preparing Egyptian Execration Statuettes for capture
Focussing before multispectral capture
Lieve Watteeuw, Mike Toth, Bill Christens-Barry, Alberto Campagnolo and Eric Joakim at work in the Imaging Lab of the University Library
Lieve Watteeuw, Mike Toth, Alberto Campagnolo and Athena Van der Perre looking at a manuscript.
Today the RICH team presented the first preliminary results of a Microdome with multispectral RTI capability at the Digital Humanities Spring Session (KU Leuven, April 28-29).
The new Multispectral Microdome is equipped with 228 different LED lamps. Five different spectra are evenly distributed over the dome: UV at 365 nm, Blue at 460 nm, Red at 523 nm, Green at 623 nm and IR at 850 nm. A black and white sensor of 28 Mp with extended sensitivity in UV and IR is mounted on top of the dome. After first analysis, the software will be fine-tuned and further enhanced.
Manuscript: KU Leuven, Tabularium, MS 1007, folio 41V
From 9 to 17 February the Portable Light Dome has been scanning cuneiform tablets at the Royal Museum of Mariemont (Belgium). This work on some hundred tablets, cones, cylinders, barrels and seals was conducted by the IAP Greater Mesopotamia team, i.e. the UCLouvain and KU Leuven partners.
They thank the direction of the Mariemont museum for the permission and their cooperation, in particular Arnaud Quertinmont for his kind reception and guidance throughout our stay.
(Hendrik Hameeuw, Elynn Gorris and Etienne Van Quickelberghe)
Poster presented at ICOM-CC’s 17th Triennial Conference, Melbourne, September 15-19
You can view the poster in a larger version here.