Université Paris-Saclay, ENS Paris-Saclay, France


As a physico-chemist, I have studied materials from archaeology, cultural heritage, paleoenvironment and palaeontology at the C2RMF (Paris, 1999-2002), the University of Cambridge (UK, 2002-2003), the Laboratoire de Physique des solides (Orsay, 2004-2005), the SOLEIL synchrotron (2005-2020), IPANEMA (2007-2020) and the Paris-Saclay University. I initiated and built the European laboratory for research on ancient materials IPANEMA and was its director from 2010 to 2019.

I have joined Université Paris-Saclay and École normale supérieure Paris-Saclay in 2020. I am the coordinator of the Key Research Sector Matériaux anciens et patrimoniaux with E. Anheim and I. Rouget which includes 122 laboratories and institutions of the Region Île-de-France. I coordinate the participation of France in the European Research Infrastructure for Heritage Science (E-RIHS) with I. Pallot-Frossard, and have been the scientific director of E-RIHS during its preparatory phase.

My personal research concerns the study of the properties of ancient materials using full-field and scanning micro-imaging. I develop multi-scale photonic methodological approaches, notably using synchrotron methods, in collaboration with imaging and image analysis specialists. I study long-term ageing processes and the exceptional preservation of biological remains and archaeological materials, manufacturing techniques used in the past, and the origin of materials used to produce archaeological objects. My projects were mainly supported by CPER funds, ANR / LabEx and EquipEx funding, regional funds, the European Commission, the American NSF and the Dutch research funding agency NWO.

Main research interests

Physico-chemistry of the long-term alteration and exceptional preservation of biological remains in archaeological and palaeontological contexts (micro-taphonomy of soft and hard tissues, textiles, hair)
Development of spectral imaging approaches for ancient materials based on synchrotron and photonic methods (X-ray absorption, X-ray microtomography, UV/vis photoluminescence, X-ray Raman)
Advanced study of artists' materials (pigments, semiconducting phases, varnishes)
Development of materials and processes inspired by ancient materials (paleo-inspiration)
Photo-induced molecular effects on complex ancient materials and approaches for safer conditions of analysis