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Le folium des enlumineurs, une couleur aujourd'hui disparue. Ce que nous rapportent les textes sur l'origine et la fabrication de cette couleur, son procédé d'emmagasinage sur un morceau d'étoffe et son emploi dans l'enluminure médiévale. Identification de folium dans des peintures du IXe s., du Xe s. et du début du XIe s.

Bernard Guineau 1
1 IRAMAT-CEB - IRAMAT - Centre Ernest Babelon
IRAMAT - Institut de Recherches sur les Archéomatériaux
Abstract : The colour formulae found in technical works from the Middle Ages cannot always be put into practice, as one would wish. In fact, the authors are rarely actually painters themselves. The terms chosen to identify different materials or processes in both the descriptions of the colours and the means used to create them don't often have a modern equivalent. What's more, the same term can have several different meanings, for example to name a colour or the matter used to obtain it. Moreover, as the texts are often compilations of earlier papers, sometimes directly inspired by classical works, many of these formulae have been polluted by an accumulation of misunderstandings stemming from misreadings or copyist errors, and often by voluntary additions intended to update the studies. Bearing relation to the texts, the examination of the paintings themselves can be a great help in resolving some of these problems. We hereby present as an example a study carried out on the colour folium, colour often encountered in old formulae, yet long having disappeared from the artist's palette. The examinations carried out both on medieval illuminations and on some rare samples conserved in druggist's have enabled us to identify the nature of the colour and have shown up the permanence of a very ancient technique which consists of retaining the colouring agent extracted from certain dyeing plants efficiently by absorption in pieces of cloth. This helps with storage and transport, before the dye is used for decorating handwritten books. Although the discovery of illuminator's materials has so far been extremely rare, the ample illustrations produced by these artists are enough for us to be able to study them quite adequately, to learn more about the materials and the painting techniques used, thus contributing to the interpretation of ancient formulae. In this perspective, the colour named during the Middle Ages as folium, used in painting as early as the 9th century A. D., seems to constitute a quite exemplary case study.
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https://hal-univ-orleans.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-02541737
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Submitted on : Tuesday, April 14, 2020 - 10:20:15 AM
Last modification on : Wednesday, April 15, 2020 - 1:51:12 AM

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  • HAL Id : hal-02541737, version 1

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Bernard Guineau. Le folium des enlumineurs, une couleur aujourd'hui disparue. Ce que nous rapportent les textes sur l'origine et la fabrication de cette couleur, son procédé d'emmagasinage sur un morceau d'étoffe et son emploi dans l'enluminure médiévale. Identification de folium dans des peintures du IXe s., du Xe s. et du début du XIe s.. Archéologie Médiévale, CRAHAM, 1996, 26, pp.23-44. ⟨hal-02541737⟩

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