Maarten van Bommel is Professor of Conservation Science At the faculty of Humanities and the Faculty of Science. He is chair of the section Restoration and Conservation of Cultural Heritage (Department of Arts & Culture). In addition, he is member of the Van 't Hoff Institute for Molecular Science. Van Bommel's is member of the Scientific Working Group of the Netherlands Institute for Conservation, Art and Sciencer (NICAS), which is currently being established, in which the Rijksmuseum, the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands, Delft University of Technology and the UvA are clustering their strengths.
Maarten van Bommel studies the characterisation and behaviour of dyes and organic pigments, both of natural and synthetic origin, and their application in moveable cultural heritage. The research entails chemical analysis, the study of historical sources, the production of reconstructions and the study of degradation mechanisms. The ultimate aim is to obtain a better understanding of the original appearance of artistic and cultural objects so that they may be placed in their historical context and presented accordingly.
Van Bommel is also engaged in the scientific study of conservation and restoration practices, taking both a theoretical and applied approach. As the appointment is to both the Faculty of Humanities and the Van 't Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences (HIMS - Faculty of Science), it builds a bridge between art and culture studies on the one hand, and sciences on the other - two disciplines of equal and significant importance to restorers. Van Bommel has been employed as a senior scientist at the Cultural Heritage Agency since 2011. He worked previously as a programme leader and senior researcher for the Netherlands Institute for Cultural Heritage, whose work includes managing the Dutch State’s art collection. Van Bommel has published numerous articles. The books he has co-authored include Inside Out Victory Boogie Woogie; a Material History of Mondrian’s Masterpiece (Amsterdam University Press, 2012).
Kate van Lookeren Campagne: Developments in the technology of tin-glaze tile production in the Northern Netherlands between 1580 and 1850 and the influence on susceptibility for glaze deterioration.
Supervisors: Maarten van Bommel & Luc Megens (Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands)
Anna Lagana: Back to transparency, back to life: Conservation and restoration of transparent plastics in works of art and design.
Supervisors: Maarten van Bommel, Ella Hendriks & Dr. Rachel Rivenc (Getty Conservation Institute)
Jonas Veenhoven: PHySICAL: Profound study of Hydrous and Solvent Interactions in Cleaning Asian Lacquer
funded by BRAIN-be (BELGIAN RESEARCH ACTION THROUGH INTERDISCIPLINARY NETWORKS)
Supervisors: Maarten van Bommel & Prof. dr. Frederic Lynen (Ghent University)
Mimi den Uijl: TooCOLD: Toolbox for studying the Chemistry of Light-induced Degradation
Supervisor: Maarten van Bommel & Peter Schoenmakers
Ana Serrano (CHAM): The Red Road of the Iberian Expansion: cochineal and the global dye trade. (2016)
Supervisors: Jessica Hallett & Maarten van Bommel
Daria Confortin: Aging of cultural heritage materials: a physico-chemical approach to conservation science. Studies on paper, parchment, pigments and dyes
Guus Verhaar (UvA): Glass sickness - its detection, prevention and treatment
Supervisors: Norman Tennent & Maarten van Bommel