A market demand for profitable religious carvings occurred in Europe before the Reformation period (1517-1648). When attempts to reform the Catholic Church and Protestant Churches took hold throughout Europe, church-related accessories were no longer in demand.
Curators and conservators of Small Wonders: Gothic Boxwood Miniatures an exhibition at The Art Gallery of Ontario used micro-CT scanning and 3D Analysis Software in order to analyze the tiny sculptures within the boxwood.
Some parts of the sculptures are tinier than grass seed. The production process remains a mystery and traces of gold and other decoration impede X-ray views.
Researchers took these 500-year-old miniature boxwood carvings to the lab to find out their secrets