Science and art are linked to each other, so that modern chemistry techniques improve our knowledge to conserve pieces of art.
“The Scream”, created by Edvard Munch in several versions, is one of the world’s most famous paintings, which represents the anguish and anxiety of modern people. The 1910 version of “The Scream” has started to gradually fade recently.
Scientists used a combination of non-invasive spectroscopic methods and synchrotron X-ray techniques on micro flakes taken from painting to study how pigments are changing color from yellow to white.
They found yellow cadmium sulfide pigment (CdS) has turned into white cadmium sulfate (CdSO4) and cadmium carbonate (CdCO3). Moisture, as the main factor, considerably accelerates the deterioration process, while light has no influence. These findings provided important clues to establish preventive conservation strategies.