ARTECHNE – Technique in the Arts, 1500-1950


Interpreting the Ragged Edges: The Danger of Being a Modern Image-Maker in Historical Research

By Jessie Wei-Hsuan Chen It has been half a year since I started my PhD project, Everlasting Flowers Between the Pages. The project investigates the epistemic values and the artistic production of seventeenth-century flower books, which are collections of flower or plant watercolors. During this first stage of my research, my major task has been consulting,…

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The Role of Print Production in the Circulation of Anatomical Knowledge

By Alice Zamboni Since January 2019, I have been conducting research for my PhD at Utrecht University. I am hosted by the Artechne group, whose interdisciplinary work and employment of empirical approaches to art history is offering much intellectual stimulation for the development of my thesis. My PhD project examines the role of print production…

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Choreographies of Glassmaking: An Impression

By Márcia Vilarigues For those of us who have watched master glass makers working in their studio, it is impossible not to be enchanted by the choreography that unfolds in front of us, where glass blowers move in perfect balance and synchronisation. An intimate relationship evolves between artist and material. This scenario is replicated at…

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Chemists and Historical Recipes to Clean Paintings

By Maartje Stols-Witlox As a paintings conservator, I apply chemistry on a daily basis. For instance, when removing a varnish, I rely on the difference in molecular properties of varnish and paint to dissolve an aged and discoloured varnish without harming the paint. Without knowledge of chemistry and of materials, conservation would be no more than…

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A Cool Oven: Boerhaave’s Little Furnace, Part II

*This blog was cross-posted on the website of the Recipes Project on 13/12/2018* By Ruben Verwaal and Marieke Hendriksen In August of this year, we wrote about our first attempt to recreate Boerhaave’s little furnace from old coal stoves. Meanwhile, Marieke’s dad, André, who is a skilled carpenter, was building a furnace from scratch, using Boerhaave’s description and a nineteenth-century…

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