AkzoNobel completes digital colour recreation of famous Van Gogh painting

Colour experts at AkzoNobel have completed the digital recreation of a Van Gogh masterpiece. 

The three-year project endeavoured to get as close as possible to reconstructing the original colour scheme used by the artist when he first made the painting.

By adopting a fusion of modern technology and classic painting techniques, it has been possible to carry out a digital colour recreation of Field with Irises near Arles. 

Because modern conservation ethics won't allow new colour to be added, a digital version was the only way to recreate the original painting.   

Employing expertise from the company's Color Technology Group - and using technology normally applied in the automotive industry - a diverse team of researchers from various disciplines and institutions has been meticulously analysing digital images of the painting. 

After hundreds of hours of painstaking work, they've now finished matching Van Gogh's original palette to produce a digital colour reconstruction which provides a better understanding of the brightness of the painting's original colours.

The image was not available for download, but can be viewed at AkzoNobel's website here

"As global experts in colour and a world leader in digital colour matching, we know how much colour matters," said AkzoNobel CEO Thierry Vanlancker. 

"We pride ourselves on our ability to deliver consistently accurate paints and coatings that provide lasting colour performance, so we're very pleased to have partnered with the Van Gogh Museum to digitally recreate a Van Gogh masterpiece."

Added Axel Rüger, Director of the Van Gogh Museum: "We are delighted with this partnership. 

"AkzoNobel leads the way in colour expertise and inspiration and for that reason it's a fantastic match. 

"Colour for Vincent van Gogh meant emotion and it is that aspect which inspires millions of people around the globe to visit us."

Attention to detail has been rigorous throughout the project. 

It began with the company's colour experts studying digital images to determine the pigment composition of the original - using data supplied by the National Gallery in Washington.

AkzoNobel has been a proud partner of the Van Gogh Museum's restoration studio since 2013. 

The company's colour experts and Sikkens brand have also helped design two major exhibitions at the venue, including the ongoing Van Gogh and Japan exhibition, which runs until June 24.

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