Structural and molecular Archaeology is an emerging interdisciplinary field based on structural analysis at the atomic, molecular and supramolecular level. An essential part is examining novel non-invasive methodologies to analyze cultural heritage objects and in particular painting materials. The original objects may undergo their own materials history at the atomic and molecular level. Here, we have to take into account the archaeological and historical periods of time as a "fourth dimension in chemistry" measured in centuries and millennia, in order to approach the significance of the material analyzed at the present time.

The study of pigments and paintings often presents difficulties arising from the non destructive examination necessity for precious objects, as well as from the complexity of the interactions between the components or from the long term action of atmospheric and other exterior agents. The research along new lines is likely to be induced by recent achievements in Chemistry, Physics, Crystallography, Materials Sciences.

The interdisciplinary study will be practically exemplified by in situ measurements with portable analytical tools followed by discussions in the art field. Thus this 3rd Course is planned to favor contacts between physicists, chemists, archaeologists and art historians.