COLUMN ONE; Saving art with science; Racing to preserve a 1965 Day-Glo artwork, a conservator must reinvent a yellow pigment
Deep in a basement laboratory at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, conservator Kamila Korbela peered at the moon-cratered image on the screen of her microscope, searching.
It was a speckle of paint that outwardly appeared no different from a half-dozen others in her portfolio. But the museum's sophisticated laser microscope told a different story.
Instead of magnifying the sample, it measured the vibration of its chemical elements. The readings showed that this fleck of color was...