Ormylia Art Diagnosis Centre

THE SACRED CONVENT OF THE ANNUNCIATION, ORMYLIA-CHALKIDIKI
Dependency of the Sacred Monastery of Simonopetra on the Holy Mountain

 

In the Province of Chalkidiki, a short distance from the village of Ormylia, there is a large women’s monastic community with over 120 nuns: the Holy Convent of the Annunciation of the Mother of God. This is a dependency of the Sacred Monastery of Simonopetra on the Holy Mountain (Hagion Oros), home of the one-thousand-year-old Athonite monasticism.
With love and dedication, the sisterhood of the Holy Convent is engaged not only in art, scholarship and technology, but also in providing service to secular society.
One of the Monastery’s objectives was to establish an important workshop of Byzantine Iconography, based on the structure approach, thought and art of Athonite prototypes.
The cultural gap in the study and diagnosis of Byzantine Iconography, gave birth to the idea of founding and operating an Art Diagnosis Centre, specialised in Byzantine Iconography.
 

 PERSONNEL

Priest Monk Serapion, Administrative Responsible
Yannis Chryssoulakis, Scientific Director, Assoc. Prof. NTUA

  RESEARCHERS
• Sister Daniilia, Chemist, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Iconographer
• Sister Emiliani, Iconographer
• Sister Maximi, Chemist, University of Ioannina
• Sister Neophyti, Computer operator
• Sophia Sotiropoulou, Physicist, PhD in Chemical Engineering, NTUA
• Georgios Karagiannis, Electrical Engineer, PhD Candidate, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
• Andreas Tsakalof, PhD in Chemistry, Academy of Science of USSR
• Konstantinos Andrikopoulos, Physicist, PhD in Chemical Engineering, University of Patras
• Christos Salpistis, Lecturer Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPORT
•  Georgios Alegras, Administrative and Financial Consultant
•  Panagiotis Katsadouris, Legal consultant
• Vasilios Alexopoulos, Dimitrios Mamaginidis, Technical software support
• Christos Yiannakakis, Sister Paisia, Accounting support
•  Sister Kallistrati, Secretariat Support
•  Sister Ioannikia, Financial officer
 
 


OPERATIONAL DEPARTMENTS OF "ORMYLIA" CENTRE

1. "Non-destructive"  analytical methods
2. Microanalytical methods through sampling
3. Digitization - data processing - database creation
 

1. «NON-DESTRUCTIVE» METHODOLOGY
• Photography and macrophotography in the visible area of the spectrum
• Ultraviolet fluorescence photography
•  Infrared Reflectography
• X-Radiography
•  Colorimetry
•  Stereomicroscopy
•  In situ UV-Vis-nIR Spectroscopy
•  In situ Raman Spectroscopy

"Non-destructive" analytical methods’ main equipment:
- HASSELBLAD 205FCC medium format photographic camera equipped with PHASE ONE Power Phase digital back (resolution of 7000x7000 pixels, colour depth 12 bits/colour).
- HAMAMATSU 2400-03-D infrared detector with an X-Y high precision motorized positional unit controlled by computer.
- ANDREX SMART 160 X-Ray portable unit (0.5-6 mA, 10-160 kV).
- MINOLTA CM-2022 portable diffuse reflectance spectrophotometer.
- LEICA MZ12 and ZEISS SV11 stereomicroscopes equipped with swinging arms and a full UV fluorescence system.
- LAMBDA 18 PERKIN ELMER UV-Vis-NIR (200-2500 nm) spectropho-tometer equipped with a fibre optic and external integration sphere accessory.
- RENISHAW Portable Raman System 100 Process Analyser.


 2. MICROANALYTICAL - SAMPLING METHODOLOGY
•  Optical Microscopy
•  FT-IR Spectroscopy
•  Raman Spectroscopy
•  Gas Chromatography - ion trap Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS/MS)
•  High Performance Liquid Chromatography - quadrupole Mass Spectrometry (HPLC/MS)

Microanalytical sampling methods’ main equipment:
- LEICA DM RXP and ZEISS AXIOTECH 100 HD research polarizing microscopes equipped with full ultraviolet fluorescence systems, automatic microphotographic devices and a SPOT 2 1.4 digital cooled camera.
- STRUERS PLANOPOL-V grinding and polishing machine.
- BIORAD FTS 175 ?FT-IR spectrophotometer.
- RENISHAW System 1000 Raman spectrophotometer equipped with two laser sources at 633 nm and 780 nm, OLYMPUS research microscope, a fibre optic and 3-directional motorized positional stage.
- FINNIGAN GCQ Gas Chromatography with an ion trap ?ass Spectrometer (GC/MS/MS).
- FINNIGAN High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC/MS) with 4 solvent channels SCM 3000 gradient system and AQA quadrupole Mass Spectrometer with electrospray ionization (ESI) and atmospheric pressure chemical ionization (APCI) ion sources.
 3. DIGITIZATION - DATA PROCESSING - DATABASE CREATION DEPARTMENT
•  Image Digitization
•  Development and application of Image processing algorithms for
•  Colour calibration,
•  Geometrical correction,
•  Mosaicing,
•  Registration, etc.
•  Multi-information Database creation.
Digitization - data processing Dpt.’s main equipment:
- ATM Network, 2X622 MBps Backbone, 4X155 MBps (LAN), 24X10/100 MBps (LAN).
- IBM Netfinity M10 and PROLIANT COMPAQ Servers.
-  SILICON GRAPHICS INDIGO II and O2 Workstations.
- Several PC and Macintosh units.
- CDD-2000 CD Tower archiving systems.
- Tektronix Phaser 440, 780 colour laser printers of high colour fidelity.
- SCANVIEW ScanMate 5000 drum scanner, (res.:5000x5000 pixels, 12 bits per colour), and HEIDELBERG TOPAZ 3 CCD flatbed scanner, (res.: 8000x8000 pixels, 16 bits per colour).

 
 

 MAIN ACTIVITIES

Focused on its chief operational aims, the main activities of "Ormylia" Art Diagnosis Centre are:

• The endeavor to the preservation and restoration processes employed in iconographic artworks, using all information provided by the diagnostic methodology - related to the process of creation, structure of paint layers, older or more recent interventions that affect the aesthetic result-  in order to avoid mistakes and optimize results.
•  The assistance to modern iconographic creation, since the precise and detailed knowledge of the “structural” elements of Byzantine or post-Byzantine icons, as derived from diagnosis, may contribute to the perfection of modern creative techniques, as well as of techniques pertaining to the production of exact copies.
• The creation and systematical maintenance of digital archives for all image data and results of the Diagnostic research in the form of a multi-information Byzantine Iconography Data Bank. These issues can therefore be diffused through the worldwide Web (Internet).
•  The production of new knowledge and optimization of the methodology employed in the research and study of paintings.
•  Fundamental priority of the Centre is the study of the unique in the entire world heritage of the Athos peninsula, as well as the Byzantine Iconographic tradition of the Macedonian area and of the whole Greek territory, in general.
•  Besides its basic priority, which is the Byzantine Iconography, "Ormylia" Art Diagnosis Centre is ready to provide diagnostic and research services concerning any important painted artwork, in general.
 
 

RECENT WORKS

Recently, "ORMYLIA" Centre, with the collaboration of the 10nth Ephorate of Byzantine Antiquities of the Greek ministry of Culture, has contributed the evaluation of the Diagnostic Analytical results to the study and conservation of important monuments of Mount Athos and the region of Chalkidiki:

1.The Diagnosis of the Frescoes of the Protaton Church (attributed to Manuel Panselinos, end of  13th Century).



2. The Diagnosis of 20 icons from the Province of Chalkidiki.
 
 



Currently the new laboratory of Chromatographic methods is created and the available instrumentation is mainly developed for the identification of organic components in artworks.
 

TECHNIQUE DETERMINATION  IDENTIFICATION
 
GC/MS/MS 1. FATTY ACIDS
2. HYDROCARBONS
3. AMINO ACIDS 
DRYING OILS
WAXES
PROTEINACEOUS BINDERS
HPLC-APCI-MS 1. SUGARS, OLIGOSACCHARIDES
2. TERPENOIDS 
NATURAL GUMS
NATURAL RESINS
HPLC-ESI-MS 1. POLYSACCHARIDES
2. PROTEINS 
NATURAL GUMS
PROTEINACEOUS BINDERS

 

 "ORMYLIA" ART DIAGNOSIS Centre is co-operating with many Greek, European and American institutions, such as:

- National Technical University of Athens
- Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
- 10th Ephorate of Byzantine Antiquites (GREECE)
- Opificio delle Pietre Dure e Laboratori di Restauro, Florence, Italy
- Philadelphia Museum of Art, USA
- Wintherthur Museum, USA
- Dipartimento di Scienze dell’Ambiente e del territorio (DISAT), University of Milano-Bicocca (UNIMIB),  Italy


"ORMYLIA" Centre has been the Co-ordinator of the EUROPEAN NETWORK FOR THE PROMOTION AND DEVELOPMENT OF DIAGNOSTIC TECHNIQUES AND TECHNOLOGIES FOR THE STUDY, RESEARCH AND CONSERVATION OF ICONS with the following participants:

- Dr Mauro MATTEINI, Dr Angelita MAIRANI - Opificio delle Pietre Dure e Laboratori di Restauro, Florence, Italy
- Prof. Roger FUOCO, Assoc. Prof. Maria Perla COLOMBINI, Dr Francesca MODUGNO - Dpt. of Chemistry and Industrial Chemistry, University of Pisa, Italy
- Prof. Pietro Alessandro VIGATO, Dr Umberto CASELLATO - Instituto di Chimica e Tecnologie Inorganiche e dei Materiali Avanzati, CNR, Padova, Italy
- Prof. R. J. H. CLARK FRS - University College London Christopher Ingold Laboratories, U.K.
- Prof. Manfred SCHREINER - Institute of Chemistry, Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna, Austria
- Dr Herbert JULING - Amtliche Material-pr?fungsastalt (MPA Bremen), Germany
- Dr Fraçoise BECHTEL, Prof. Max SCHVOERER - Centre de Recherche en Physique Appliquée à l’ Archéologie, Université de Bordeaux III, France
- Dr Mercedes GRACIA - Instituto de Quimica Fisica “Rocasolano”, Madrid, Spain
- Prof. Rui VILAR - Instituto Superior Technico, Departamento de Materials, Lisbon, Portugal
 Currently " ORMYLIA" Centre is participating to the following European Programmes:
- Laboratories on Science and Technology for the conservation of European Cultural Heritage, LabS TECH.
- “Natural Colouring Lacs in Europe”, Culture 2000 Framework Programme.
- PLATON Bi-lateral Science and Technology Cooperation Project between Greece and France:  “Multispectral data acquisition through the use of  different detectors”.


Address:
"ORMYLIA" - ART DIAGNOSIS CENTRE
Specialists in Byzantine Iconography
SACRED CONVENT OF THE ANNUNCIATION
63071 ORMYLIA – GREECE
TEL.: +30 371 98400 - FAX : +30 371 98402
e-mail: diagnostiko@hal.forthnet.gr
 http:// www.monastery-artdiagnosis