Francesca Casadio, Ph.D., Co-Director
Francesca Casadio joined the Art Institute of Chicago in July 2003 to establish and direct a state of the art conservation science laboratory. As the Museum's first A. W. Mellon Senior Conservation Scientist, she is in charge of planning and carrying out scientific research in support of the preservation and study of the Museum's collection. Francesca Casadio received her PhD and MS degrees in Chemistry from the University of Milan, Italy. In 2006, Dr. Casadio was awarded the L'Oréal Art and Science of Color Silver Prize for distinguished contribution to the creative meeting of science and art through color with her collaborative research with Professor Richard P. Van Duyne of Northwestern University. Casadio has published on numerous topics in the conservation science field, dealing with both movable and immovablecultural heritage. She is an Associate Editor of Studies in Conservation and Co-chair of the 2014 Gordon Research Conference on Scientific Methods in Cultural Heritage Research. Her research interests are the application and development of analytical methods to the study of works of art (including synchrotron techniques), SERS, and interdisciplinary technical art history studies. Her work has been featured on air, online and in print on: reuters online media, US National Public Radio, The Chicago Tribune, Crain's Chicago Business, Italy's il Corriere della sera, il Sole24 ore, Vogue Italia, radio rai, and other media.
Monica Olvera de la Cruz, Ph.D., Co-Director
Monica Olvera de la Cruz is a soft-matter theorist, the Lawyer Taylor Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and Professor of Chemistry at Northwestern University. Monica obtained her B.A. in Physics from the UNAM, Mexico, in 1981, and her Ph.D. in Physics from Cambridge University, UK, in 1985, and she is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences as well as the American Physical Society. Monica directed the Northwestern University Materials Research Center from 2006–2013, which she grew in research, funding level and education, and expanded it to impact society beyond science and engineering by facilitating development of visionary outreach programs in the arts such as The Center for Scientific Studies in the Arts (NU-ACCESS). Monica has developed novel methods to analyze complex systems. Her current work is focused on self-assembly of heterogeneous molecules, charged molecules and in molecular electrolytes. She has described emergence of shape and patterns in membranes and in multicomponent complex mixtures. She and her students and postdocs discovered that electrostatics leads to spontaneous symmetry breaking in ionic membranes such as viral capsid (for which they were awarded the 2007 Cozarelli Prize), and in fibers. Olvera de la Cruz currently serves in the Basic Energy Sciences Advisory Committee, United States Department of Energy, and on the Board of Physics and Astronomy, United States National Research Council. She has participated in various National Research Council committees including the Committee on Societal Benefits from Condensed Matter and Materials Research, Research at the Intersection of Physical and Life Sciences (RIPLS), the Solid State Science Committee and the Committee on Key Challenge Areas for Convergence and Health; from 2010-12 she chaired the Condensed Matter and Materials Research Committee. From 2005 to 2009 she was in the Mathematical and Physical Sciences Directorate Advisory Committee of the National Science Foundation, and chaired the Division of Materials Research Advisory Committee.
Marc Walton, D. Phil., Senior Scientist
Marc Walton currently holds the position of Research Associate Professor of Materials Science and Engineering in the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science at Northwestern University. He was trained in Chemistry and Art History at Clark University. He earned a D.Phil. from the University of Oxford in archaeological science following an MA in art history, as well as a diploma in the conservation of works of art, from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. After earning his Ph.D, Marc worked at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art for two years prior to joining the Getty Conservation Institute in 2005, where he was an associate scientist responsible for the scientific study of antiquities at the J. Paul Getty Museum. In addition, he established and ran the analytical laboratory at the Getty Villa site, and served as co-PI on a National Science Foundation Cultural Heritage Science grant on ancient Athenian pottery. His research has focused primarily on trade and manufacture of ancient objects.
William Kung, Ph.D., Director of Operations
William Kung received his B.S. in physics from California Institute of Technology and Ph.D. in physics from the University of Pennsylvania on soft matter theory. Trained as a theorist, William has studied the formation of various non-closed packed structures in colloidal crystals, investigated new scaling regime for topologically constrained polymers via field-theoretic renormalization group calculations, developed the dynamical theory of polar liquid crystals using the general Poisson-bracket formalism, and studied the general effects of water-mediated solvation and the asymmetry between positive and negative charges on nanoparticle crystallization. He is also the author of the research monograph Geometry and Phase Transitions in Colloids and Polymers. In his NU-ACCESS role, William oversees the daily operations and budget of the center.
Johanna Salvant, Ph.D. Postdoctoral Fellow
Johanna Salvant studied Chemistry and Materials Science at Chimie-ParisTech in Paris, France, and obtained her M.Sc. in the analysis of archeological materials at the University College London, UK. Johanna completed her Ph.D. in analytical chemistry performing analyses of chemical and physical properties of Vincent Van Gogh's painting materials at the Musee du Louvre in the Centre de Recherche et de Restauration des Musees de France (C2RMF). Before joining NU-ACCESS, she held postdoctoral appointments at the Van Gogh Museum and Ecole Superieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles de Paris (ESPCI), France, working on the characterization of the microstructure of complex polymeric materials.
Emeline Pouyet, Ph.D. Postdoctoral Fellow
Emeline Pouyet completed her Ph.D. studies in 2015 at the ID21 beamline at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (Grenoble, France). She received her M.S. degree in Archeometry in 2010 with a project focused on the study of ancient glassmaking processes. At the ID21 beamline, her activities focused on using infrared- and X ray-based techniques to achieve molecular, elemental, and structural characterization on a single complex and heterogeneous sample.
Internal Steering Committee
A revolving Internal Steering Committee provides oversight and guidance for the activities of NU-ACCESS. Its members are:
- Kathleen Bickford Berzock, Associate Director of Curatorial Affairs, Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, Northwestern University
- Jesús Escobar, Department Chair, Art History, Northwestern University
- Aggelos K. Katsaggelos, Joseph Cummings Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
- L. Catherine Brinson, Associate Dean for Academic and Professional Initiatives, McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science, Northwestern University
- Harriet Stratis, Senior Research Conservator, Art Institute of Chicago
- Frank Zuccari, Grainger Executive Director, Department of Conservation, Art Institute of Chicago
External Advisory Committee
An External Advisory Committee meets annually to assess the progress of NU-ACCESS in meeting its goals. Currently it comprises:
- Dr. David Bomford, Director of Conservation, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
- Dr. Marco Leona, David H. Koch Scientist in Charge, Metropolitan Museum of Art
- Dr. Costanza Miliani, Senior Researcher, National Council of Research, Italy and Head, Molab Transnational Access Service