Recent articles & book chapters

“Investigating Colors and Techniques on theWall Paintings of the ‘Tomb of the Philosophers’, an Early Hellenistic Macedonian Monumental Cist Tomb in Pella (Macedonia, Greece)

Hariclia Brecoulaki, Giovanni Verri, Myrina Kalaitzi, Yannis Maniatis and Maria Lilimpaki-Akamati

Heritage 2023, 6(8), 5619-5647

Read more here: 

Published online - 28/07/2023.

Minerva in Colours: First Results on a Polychrome Roman Sculpture from Carnuntum (Pannonia)

Gabrielle Kremer, Robert Linke, Georg Plattner, Eduard Pollhammer, Marina Brzakovic, Robert Krickl, Nirvana Silnovic and Václav Pitthard

Heritage 2023, 6(7), 5213-5241

Read more here:

Published online - 11/07/2023.

Article collection:

Proceedings from the conference on Ancient Science and Technology of colour: Pigments, dyes, drugs and their perception in Antiquity held at the University of Pisa on 28-29 April, 2022.

TECHNAI: An International Journal for Ancient Science and Technology

Published by Fabrizio Serra editore, Pisa · Roma

Volume 14, 2023


*Vinzenz Brinkmann, Ulrike Koch-Brinkmann
Tracking blue. Some remarks on blue colour materials in the polychromy of ancient Greek sculpture (Open Access)
DOI: 10.19272/202310501002

*Giovanni Verri, Hariclia Brecoulaki
"From the face and the expression of the eyes": Multidisciplinary studies of pigments in ancient Greek and Roman painted surfaces (Open Access)
DOI: 10.19272/202310501003

*Agnès Rouveret
Certamen artis ac naturae. Couleurs et matières dans la définition plinienne de la peinture (Histoire naturelle, livre 35) (Open Access)
DOI: 10.19272/202310501004

*Chiara Ballestrazzi
The colours of gemstones in Pliny the Elder’s Natural History, Book 37 (Open Access)
DOI: 10.19272/202310501005

*Effie Photos-Jones
Pigments giving more than colour: The case of Lemnian earth or miltos (Open Access)
DOI: 10.19272/202310501006

*Maria Michela Sassi
A few remarks on the relationship between materials, technology and colour experience in ancient Greece (Open Access)
DOI: 10.19272/202310501007

Read the open access articles here.

Published online - 15/06/2023.

"Some Considerations on Recent Approaches to Cleaning, Conservation, and Display of Ancient Marble Sculptures from Historical Collections"

Federica Giacomini

Studies in Conservation 2023, 1-9.

Read more here: 

Published online - 15/05/2023.


“Tracking Trajectories: Projecting Polychromy onto a Roman Relief from a Scottish Castle”

Louisa Campbell

Heritage 2023, 6(4), 3722-3744

Read more here: 

Published online - 14/04/2023.

"Making and working Egyptian blue – a review of the archaeological evidence"

Ilia Kovalev, Alexandra S. Rodler, Cecilie Brøns and Thilo Rehren

Journal of Archaeological Science, 2023153, 105772.

Read more here:

Published online - 08/04/2023.

"New Evidence about the Polychromy of Early Imperial Cycle from the Augusteum of Rusellae (Tuscany)"

Paolo Liverani, Susanna Bracci, Roberta Iannaccone, Sara Lenzi and Donata Magrini

Heritage 2023, 6(4), 3385-3401.

Read more here:

Published online - 23/03/2023.

"Color and Light: A Hellenistic Terracotta Figurine of a Maenad from Myrina"

Brigitte Bourgeois, Giovanni Verri and Violaine Jeammet

Heritage 2023, 6(3), 3005-3024.

Read more here:

Published - 12/03/2023.


"Polychromy in Ancient Greek Sculpture: New Scientific Research on an Attic Funerary Stele at the Metropolitan Museum of Art"

Elena Basso, Federico Carò and Dorothy H. Abramitis

Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(5), 3102.

Read more here:

Published online - 28/02/2023.

"The Gosford Wellhead: An Ancient Roman Masterpiece"

Seán Hemingway, with a contribution by Dorothy H. Abramitis, Federico Carò, and Adriana Rizzo

The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, v.80, no. 3 (Winter, 2023)

Read online or download the PDF, here:

Published - 08/02/23 

"The colours of Segesta. Searching for the traces of the lost pigments"

Veronica Ciaramitaro, Francesco Armetta, Monica de Cesare and Maria Luisa Saladino

Journal of Cultural Heritage, 59 (2023): 30-37.

Read more here:

Published online - 20/11/2022.

"A Late Archaic/Early Classical Greek Relief with Two Hoplites (Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek IN 2787)"

Jan Stubbe Østergaard and Adam Schwartz

Jahrbuch des Deutschen Archäologischen Instituts, 2022, 137, S. 1–37.

Read more here:

To read a sample of the article (pp. 1 - 10), see:

Published - 27/10/2022.

"Multi-technique analysis of pigments on sandstone sculptures: Renaissance re-painting of a Roman relief"

Louisa Campbell and Margaret Smith

Herit Sci 10, 156 (2022).

Read free and open-access here:

Published - 05/10/2022.

Recent books

"Imperial Colors. The Roman Portrait Busts of Septimius Severus and Julia Domna"

J. Van Voorhis and M. Abbe (with J. G. Istrabadi)

Published by Giles, Ltd (London). In association with the S. and L. Eskenazi Museum of Art, University of Indiana. 2023.

A major new illustrated survey on two internationally significant Imperial Roman portrait busts. Imperial Colors focuses on the paired busts of Emperor Septimius Severus (r. 193-211) and his wife, Empress Julia Domna in the Eskenazi Museum of Art, two of the finest known examples of later Roman portrait sculpture. This book presents innovative multidisciplinary research . 

More here: 

Published - March 2023.

"Color and Meaning in the Art of Achaemenid Persia"

Alexander Nagel

Published by Cambridge University Press

This volume investigates the use of polychromy in the art and architecture of ancient Iran. Focusing on Persepolis, the topic is explored within the context of the modern historiography of Achaemenid art and the scientific investigation of a range of works and monuments in Iran and in museums around the world. Nagel's study contextualizes scholarly efforts to retrieve aspects of ancient polychromies in Western Asia and interrogates current debates about the contemporary use of color in the architecture and sculpture in the ancient Mediterranean world, especially in North Africa and the eastern Mediterranean.

Some advance content is already available for download here.

Coming soon! - January 2024

"Colour in Late Antique Art: An Aesthetic Exploration of Polychromy"

Bente Kiilerich

Published open-access on

Published - 13/04/2023.

"Au Plaisir Des Dieux: Expériences Du Sensible Dans Les Rituels En Grèce Ancienne"

Adeline Grand-Clément

Published by Anacharsis Publishing

In ancient Greece the gods were omnipresent, from the clouds to the smallest sprig of rosemary. Rituals flourished. Soliciting deities was both frequent and extraordinary – and always possibly dangerous.

We know the procedures mobilized in these fragile moments of the "kitchen of sacrifice"; We are less informed about the range of senses that had to be awakened at the crucial moment of the encounter with the gods.
Adeline Grand-Clément embarks here on an investigation as close as possible to the feelings of the participants, meticulously seeking to grasp how darkness or light, colours, smells, touch, sounds or landscapes shaped specific sensory spaces, considered effective because they satisfy the pleasure of the gods. 

More here.

Published - 03/03/2023.

"The Colours of medieval English Alabaster Panels. Polychromy, production and perception" (English Edition)

Markus Schlicht, Aurélie Mounier, Maud Mulliez, in collaboration with Pascal Mora and Romain Pacanowski.

Published by Ausonius editions.

The book details the work of a multidisciplinary team on the analysis and reconstruction of the polychromy of several English alabaster panels preserved in the Bordeaux region, and is available online.

Download a free PDF copy of the book here.

Published - 31/01/2023.

"Bisanzio a colori. La policromia nella scultura bizantina"

Silvia Pedone

Published by Bardi edizioni

More here.

Published - 2022.

"Seeing Color in Classical Art: Theory, Practice, and Reception, from Antiquity to the Present"

Jennifer M. S. Stager

Published by Cambridge University Press

The remains of ancient Mediterranean art and architecture that have survived over the centuries present the modern viewer with images of white, the color of the stone often used for sculpture. Antiquarian debates and recent scholarship, however, have challenged this aspect of ancient sculpture. There is now a consensus that sculpture produced in the ancient Mediterranean world, as well as art objects in other media, were, in fact, polychromatic. Color has consequently become one of the most important issues in the study of classical art. Jennifer Stager's landmark book makes a vital contribution to this discussion. Analyzing the dyes, pigments, stones, earth, and metals found in ancient art works, along with the language that writers in antiquity used to describe color, she examines the traces of color in a variety of media. Stager also discusses the significance of a reception history that has emphasized whiteness, revealing how ancient artistic practice and ancient philosophies of color significantly influenced one another.

More here.

Published - 25/11/2022.

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