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Materials in folk art from Hälsingland – A colourful study.

Konferensbidrag (offentliggjort, men ej förlagsutgivet)
Författare Ingalill Nyström
Publicerad i Book of abstracts. Materials for Tomorrow: Chalmers annual Materials Science Initiative Seminar and the Division of surface and materials chemistry annual symposium. Nov 8-10, 2016, Gothenburg, Sweden
Publiceringsår 2016
Publicerad vid Institutionen för kulturvård
Språk en
Ämnesord Art technology, folk art, decorated farmhouses, wall paintings, painted furniture, decorated textiles
Ämneskategorier Teknikhistoria, Kulturstudier, Bildkonst, Spektroskopi, Materialkemi, Annan naturvetenskap


What can we learn from the materials of yesterday for the materials of tomorrow? This talk is about art technology and the materials found in folk arts and crafts in decorated farmhouses of Hälsingland, UNESCO World Heritage since 2012. A variety of case studies from the project called “Decorated Farmhouses of Hälsingland: a holistic study of a world heritage site” will be presented. Wall paintings and painted furniture as well as decorated textiles are examined to understand their technology and artist’s materials. The study is cross disciplinary and methods from natural and historical sciences have been applied. The project is funded by the Swedish Research Council (VR), started in January 2014, and extends over four years. It is a collaboration between different researchers: conservation scientists, chemists, physicists, conservators, art historians and ethnologists from University of Gothenburg, Chalmers University of Technology, Linköping University and the Swedish National Heritage Board. The scientific analyses applied in the study are primarily different spectroscopic methods. Non-invasive analyses using multispectral imaging and XRF were conducted directly on art objects in museums and homestead museums. Additionally, samples were taken from these objects for supplementary analyses using FT-Raman and IR spectroscopy and DSA-ToF-MS and GC-MS. As a conclusion from this study, we believe that cooperation between different disciplines is crucial to tackle and interpret empirical material that often contains both historical sources that require transcriptions and interpretations, and material characterization and scientific interpretation of the analytical results. When different skills and various perspectives come together, new interpretations and new knowledge can be obtained. And in a sustainable perspective, the craft techniques and materials, as well as the historic recipes revealed in our study, have the potential to be re-used in the development of modern paints for the buildings of tomorrow.

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