A Splash of Colour - Identification of Pigments in the Collections

How can we know where the red or blue on an ancient artefact comes from?
Thursday 17 August, 1 pm: join this talk to learn about how we can identify the source pigment of a colour on an ancient artefact with Lorraine Leung and Thérèse Harrison.

Colour is found on a wide range of ancient objects, such as coffins, papyri, ceramics and paintings, and also in cosmetic materials for body and hair.  Colourants can from a range of natural sources including minerals, plants, insects, lay and soot from oil lamps or by charring ivory or bones.  The use of specific colours is often highly symbolic.  

This floor talk will discuss how pigments have been identified on various items in the Chau Chau Wing Museum collections using scientific analysis and will discuss their significance.  

About the speakers

Thérèse Harrison is a Professional Officer, Cultural Heritage. Thérèse has a background in Fine Arts and Chemistry. She specialises in the analysis of Cultural Heritage across a number of analytical techniques including vibrational and X-ray spectroscopy.

Lorraine Leung is a Professional Officer, Cultural Heritage at Sydney Analytical, the University of Sydney. Lorraine has a background in Archaeological Science. She has experience working on a wide range of interdisciplinary projects with archaeological, museum and cultural heritage material using analytical techniques including vibrational spectroscopy.

Header image: Thérèse Harrison collecting data from faded pigments on top of the the Mer-neith-it-es coffin.

A Splash of Colour - Identification of Pigments in the Collections

Free, in person talk.

Thursday 17 August 2023
1.00PM - 2.00PM
Chau Chak Wing Museum
Register your attendance here