Agilent Technologies Powers Art Conservation Workshop at Yale University
Art Conservators and Scientists Collaborate, Learn Advanced Techniques to
Analyze Lacquers and Other Compounds
SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- July 16, 2013
Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) today announced it is supplying
state-of-the-art instruments and software for a workshop on Recent Advances in
Characterizing Asian Lacquer at Yale University. The workshop started on
Monday at Yale’s Center for Conservation and Preservation.
An international group of art conservators and scientists are learning
advanced techniques in gas chromatography and mass spectrometry to help them
analyze lacquer and a broad range of other trace-level compounds found in
Asian lacquer artifacts.
Careful analysis of lacquer can reveal a wealth of information about the age
and geographical origins of the components, and also address the authenticity
of the artifact. Modern coatings that aim to imitate lacquer are composed of
various mixtures of polymers and pigments and can also be characterized using
“We were very excited when our Getty Conservation Institute colleagues
approached us last year about the opportunity to co-host a workshop that
focuses on the latest advances in the characterization of Asian lacquers,”
said Anikó Bezur, director of scientific research at the Yale center. “The
creation of such professional advancement opportunities for conservators and
conservation scientists is a core mission of ours, and we are grateful for
Agilent’s support that made the workshop possible and for the enthusiasm its
team has expressed for our research and outreach efforts.”
The five-day workshop, based on the Getty Conservation Institute’s research on
Asian lacquers, was developed in partnership with the Yale Institute for the
Preservation of Cultural Heritage. Frontier Laboratories’ pyrolysis technology
used in this workshop is provided by Quantum Analytics.
“We are grateful to have Agilent partner with Yale West Campus in this
exciting event,” said Christopher Incarvito, Ph.D., the campus’ director of
research operations and technology. “It is pivotal to have such enthusiastic
support for our art conservation efforts, as this field is dependent on access
to leading-edge scientific instrumentation.”
“As a longtime partner to Yale and its affiliates, we are honored to support
this important program,” said Jim Lynch, Agilent’s director of academic
programs for the Americas. “We are certain that the combined experience and
expertise of these specialized professionals, coupled with the most advanced
analytical technology available today, will yield great insight into the
conservation of art and help identify priorities for future research in the
Techniques such as THM-Py-GC/MS (pyrolysis-gas chromatography/mass
spectroscopy using thermally assisted hydrolysis and methylation) are commonly
used in museum laboratories to analyze the chemical composition of paints,
coatings, polymeric materials, and other environmental samples collected from
works of art and artifacts. Asian lacquer is primarily composed of sap from
the trees of the Anacardiaceae family and is distinct from other wood finishes
such as European japanning.
Agilent’s GC/MSD systems are widely used in a variety of industries and
provide advanced analytical capabilities to specialized fields such as art
conservation and preservation. Agilent also offers a selection of handheld
mobile FTIR and UV-VIS spectroscopy instruments for use in artifact analysis
at museums and in the field.
For more information on Agilent’s artifact analysis products, visit the
company’s Art Conservation Analysis website.
About Agilent Technologies
Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) is the world’s premier measurement company
and a technology leader in chemical analysis, life sciences, diagnostics,
electronics and communications. The company’s 20,500 employees serve customers
in more than 100 countries. Agilent had revenues of $6.9 billion in fiscal
2012. Information about Agilent is available at www.agilent.com.
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Susan Berg, +1 408-553-7093
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