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Master 2 internship "Multi-analytical study of the Roman wall paintings of Limonum (Poitiers, France)"


Context: Roman influence expanded in Gaul from the 3rd century BC and culminated with the conquest and administration of the region under Augustus, bringing with it new construction and decoration techniques, including wall painting. Gallo-Roman decorative traditions, initially strongly influenced by Italian models, are known for gradually acquiring a certain autonomy and originality in the second half of the 1st century AD. This raises questions on possible changes in the choice of raw materials and painting technique made by craftsmen of the time. This research focuses on the investigation of a large corpus of wall paintings in the Roman province of Gallia Aquitania: that of the ancient city of Limonum (modern-day Poitiers, France) and falls within the framework of the GPR Human Past WP5 A1 “Production, conservation, perception, and digital restoration of coloured cultural items”. It is part of an ongoing PhD project which aims to investigate the painting materials, the ways in which pigments were prepared, combined and applied, and overall, the evolution of the painting technique employed in the painted plasters found in Poitiers.

Research objectives and methods: The internship will focus on smaller collections yet to be studied and support the ongoing analyses. The student will carry out the archaeometric study of the wall painting fragments through a multi-analytical approach consisting of non-invasive and micro-invasive techniques. They will employ techniques such as x-ray fluorescence spectroscopy (XRF), hyperspectral imaging (HSI) in the Vis/NIR and SWIR ranges, optical microscopy, x-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM-EDS), FTIR and Raman spectroscopy. Other activities will include: bibliography research, data analysis and interpretation.

Tutors: Isabelle Pianet (IR), Adriana Iuliano (PhD student).

Starting date: March/April 2024

Duration of the internship: c. 5 months

Location: Archéosciences Bordeaux, CNRS/Université Bordeaux Montaigne/Université de Bordeaux, Maison de l'Archéologie, 33607 Pessac, France

Funding: GPR Human Past – Fieldwork Component

Contacts: Please send your CV and motivation letter to Isabelle Pianet ( and Adriana Iuliano (


Call for application (FR&EN)

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