I read an interesting article recently about Vincent Van Gogh’s paintings of sunflowers. In the 1880’s Van Gogh was using a new kind of paint called “chrome yellow” know for its vibrant color. Over time the colors have faded. Chemists have found the reason. In the presence of sunlight the chromium in the yellow paint reacts with the white pigment Van Gogh used to lighten it.
To prevent Van Gogh’s sunflowers from growing older and darker, they need to be stored in cooler, darker galleries.