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Girl with a photonic pearl earring

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In fine art, the “conversation of contrasts” between the use of light and dark is called chiaroscuro. The technique was a signature style of Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer’s. It creates a dramatic depth that was achieved by researchers from the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and Nanjing University in China — in a 1- × 1-mm square reproduction of “Girl with a Pearl Earring.” By shining polarized white light over a glass slide topped with millions of tiny nanopillars, the collaborators expressed Vermeer’s subtle shades,...Read full article

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