An opportunity and new tools for the Analytical techniques in art and conservation science.


  • Dr. Michel Menu, ITMO University
  • Dr. Vincent Detalle, Centre for Research and Restoration of the Museums of France (C2RMF)
  • Dr. Olga Smolyanskaya, ITMO University

Heritage science is a field that is now interdisciplinary, in transformation, and tends to become transdisciplinary. It leads a great number of specialists to think together around the same object which tries to gather in the same point the whole of the produced knowledge and the elements of research of very different nature.

We can represent it around three main axes:

The first axis focuses on the characterization of materials to extract information about understanding the mechanisms of alteration, evaluating the state of conservation of a work or an art object in order to optimize treatments or restoration methods and to define a strategy of preventive conservation.

The second axis will set up dating methods and a strategy to materials analysis to deduce provenance (sources of production), to design trade routes used during the different periods and thus build an innovative approach to understand manufacturing techniques and so contribute to the rediscovery of our common past. At the same time this axis participates in the establishment of criteria for the expertise of works of art. 

The last axis aims through the F.A.I.R. construction of databases, 3D model, to ensure permanent archiving of all data for the conservation and the memory. Meanwhile this enables the establishment of elements of mediation, museography to allow a dissemination both to researchers and professionals and to the general public or the social economic world. 

Thus, numerous professionals and researchers are gathered in this same universe for the same objective: physicists, chemists, material scientists, historians, art historians, anthropologists, philosophers, but also curators, restorers, architects, archivists, archaeologists and scientists of digital and information sciences. In this respect, evolution of the methods the analyses provide chemical images, the evolution from a point analysis to a 2D, 2.5D and 3D analysis. 

If radiography remained for a long time the only technique to approach tomographic elements, new techniques emerged recently, first applied in medicine or security such as SWIR, OCT, THZ or Radar techniques.


The 1-day symposium topics will include:

  • scientific research of museum items and cultural heritage objects using optical spectroscopy and tomography methods. 
  • numerical methods and tools for processing images and spectra, automated control of large-format paintings; development of architecture, functionality and regulations for the use of a database of terahertz spectra and images.
  • concrete cases of art and archaeology applications.
  • special workshop “Russian Mobile Laboratory for Heritage Science based on Advanced Optics, HS-MOLAB RU”.


Olga Smolyanskaya

ITMO University

Michel Menu

ITMO University

Vincent Detalle

Centre de recherche et de restauration des musées de France, C2RMF

David Giovannacci

French Research Laboratory on Historical Buildings

Jean-Paul Guillet

University of Bordeaux

Sergei Sirro

The State Russian Museum

Patrick Mounaix

University of Bordeaux

David Citrin

Georgia Tech-CNRS