State of the Art: Museum Takes Hi-Tech Look at Vermeer

A Macro XRF scanner is used to study in minute detail the surface of Johannes Vermeer's masterpiece "Girl with a Pearl Earring", at the Mauritshuis museum in The Hague, Netherlands, Feb. 26, 2018. (VOA)

Researchers at the Mauritshuis museum in The Hague are using the latest technology to take a long, hard look at one of their most prized paintings, Johannes Vermeer’s “Girl with a Pearl Earring,” and they are inviting the public in to watch.

For two weeks starting Monday, experts are pointing a battery of high-tech machines at the 17th-century masterpiece of a young woman whose enigmatic gaze has earned her the nickname of the Dutch Mona Lisa.

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Mauritshuis Director Emilie Gordenker says the iconic painting was last studied in 1994 during a conservation project.

Since then, technology has made such advances that the museum says scanners and X-ray machines can provide new insights into how Vermeer painted the girl and the materials he used. (VOA)