Journal article Open Access

Characterization of painted beehive panels: Slovenian unique folk art creativity

Retko, Klara; Legan, Lea; Kavčič, Maša; Ropret, Polonca

Painted beehive panels are representative examples of folk art specific and unique to Slovenia. Although without precedence in European ethnographic art, not much attention has been given in the past to the artists’ materials involved in the creation of these paintings. This study, which included three different panels (dating from the beginning of the 19th to the second half of the 20th centuries), was focused on material characterization using Raman and Fourier‐transform infrared spectrometer (FTIR) spectroscopy (non‐, minimally invasive and invasive). The analyses showed that many of the examined paint layers were composed of historically commonly available colouring agents, although less traditional ones were also detected on individual panels. Additionally, the research suggests that lipids are the main or even the sole component of the paints’ binder. This evidence corresponds fairly well with written texts of the 20th century.

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