Not only the appearance but also the smell of cultural properties may interest museum visitors. The Polish-Slovenian team will soon start their project on the development of an international library of fragrances for museum objects. The analysis will include, among others “Lady with an Ermine”.
“Museum objects are often associated with fragrances that reflect their historical use – perhaps conservation treatments or they may +simply+ reflect their degradation. This project will allow us to examine unique objects, such as those belonging to Franc Prešeren, the Slovenian national poet, and tell their story from a completely new point of view,” emphasized the curator of the National Museum of Slovenia, MA Darko Knez, quoted in the press release sent to Polish Press Agency.
In total, 10 objects with different historical backgrounds will be selected – their smells will be analyzed and the historical significance of these fragrances will be assessed. One of the objects studied at the National Museum in Krakow will be Leonardo da Vinci’s “Lady with an Ermine”.
In laboratories, researchers will carry out numerous chemical analyzes of volatile organic compounds emitted by these selected historical objects, constituting their odours. The aim is to combine these fragrances with the study of the history of objects to – perhaps – develop a new interpretation and narrative of the description of an object.