IPERION HSIntegrating Platforms for the European Research Infrastructure ON Heritage Science

Cultural Heritage Agency

The Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands (RCE) is an institute for the preservation and management of cultural heritage in the broadest sense. The area of interest involves monuments and historical buildings, archaeology, natural landscapes and movable heritage, i.e. collections. The headquarters are located in Amersfoort and the Cultural Heritage Laboratory is located in Amsterdam. The RCE is part of the Ministry for Education, Culture and Science and has a permanent staff of about 300 persons plus c. 100 persons acting as contract researchers, Master and PhD students etc. The RCE has developed many studies of art‐historical objects and precious artworks, including paintings by Van Gogh, Rembrandt, Mondrian and many others. The research department currently has a strong focus on modern materials and objects, from 1870 till present. The facilities offered by RCE with respect to Archlab is the access to information stored in documentation files in the RCE library which is hosted in Amsterdam. This documentation consists of all research done in the last 45 years at the former Netherlands Institute for Cultural Heritage (ICN) which is now part of the RCE and the RCE. The RCE often does research in collaboration with museums and other cultural heritage institutes and often on their objects. Permission from the object owner is needed for access to this information. Typical objects and materials which were investigated are paintings, historic interiors, textiles, furniture, metals, glass, ceramics, leather, plastics, pigments, binding media, varnish, resin, paper, books, inks all from periods varying from pre-historic up to today. Research involves both material analysis and properties of the materials investigated. Typical information present are reports, analytical data, images, samples (including cross-sections) and art historical information. The information is partly in Dutch, partly in English, partly in German. In addition, access is allowed to a large collection of reference materials of over 10.000 materials including all of the materials mentioned above. Furthermore, access to instrumentation and expertise is offered if appropriate. Instrumentation offered is microscopy, SEM-EDX, XRF, XRD, FTIR, RAMAN, HPLC-PDA, LC-MS and GC-MS.


  • Cultural heritage

    archaeological object and site, architecture, art, decorative arts, furniture, historic interiors, mosaics, painting, sculpture, textile


  • inorganic

    ceramic (clay/mud brick/terracotta/earthenware/stoneware/porcelain), glass, inks, metal and metallurgical By-Products, pigments, plastics

  • organic

    animal parts, binding media, glues, paper, resin, textiles, varnishes, wood