Protecting Original Color Pigments

Harvard University has an extraordinary collection of some of the world’s oldest and most original pigments. These color ‘concentrates’ are from all over the world, and span decades or even centuries in age.  In our modern era, new hues and colors seem trivial, but some of the very original paint colors owe their existence to this special collection.

Great Big Story explores what is houses at the Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies.  From beetles to tree bark, and even the resin used to wrap mummies in Egypt, the source of these pigments are truly extraordinary.

The collection has over 2,500 rare colors, collected from around the world over the last many years.

[some of the] rarest pigments including a particularly vivid shade of yellow produced from the urine of cows that are fed only mango leaves.