8 December 2022 • STEM Dooley Presents on Spectroscopy Imaging in Artwork By Colin Spencer '19
Dr. Kathryn Dooley, a research scientist at the National Gallery of Art, presented on the use of multimodal imaging spectroscopy as the 2022 Hill-Franks Speaker in Chemistry.
During Dooley’s talk, “Mapping pigments and paint binders using multimodal imaging spectroscopy of artwork in situ” discussed how spectroscopy, the study of absorption and emission of light and radiation by matter, can map out key points in paintings like color loss and errors.
Through multimodal imaging spectroscopy, artists like those at the National Gallery of Art, can get an accurate understanding of what shades of color to use when fixing paintings.
Dooley presented on three examples: The Annunciation with Saint Francis and Saint Louis of Toulouse by Cosme Tura, Lavender Mist by Jackson Pollock, The Triumph of Christ by Dirck Volckertz Coorhert and Maerten van Heemskerck and The Olive Orchard by Vincent Van Gogh.
Dooley presented on how mapping pigments can be used on oil and non-paint materials like silk and wool as well.
Prior to the talk, Dooley visited two Chemistry classes, where she watched presentations in one on student experiments and gave feedback in another for student videos on the applications of science to art conservation.
Funded by Dr. Edward Franks ‘72, who earned a B.S. in chemistry at Hobart, the lecture series bearing his name brings prominent members in the field of chemistry to campus for two lectures: a public lecture and a lecture focused on chemistry.
Dr. Franks earned a B.S. in chemistry at HWS, then studied computer science and related courses in graduate school (medical database management systems) before earning a medical degree at Albany Medical College. He had a private ophthalmic practice in Upstate New York from 1987 until his retirement in 2016. Among his professional achievements was serving as a diplomat for both the American Board of Ophthalmology and the National Board of Medical Examiners.
Top: Dr. Kathryn Dooley, a research scientist at the National Gallery of Art, presents to Chemistry students on the use of multimodal imaging spectroscopy as the 2022 Hill-Franks Speaker in Chemistry.