Old paintings are like a snapshot of life at a certain time or place in history, but just like an image, there are other people in the background that you may not recall. However, the University of California have developed a system that could start to indentify the faces from 15th century paintings. The software uses facial recognition technology; it takes the facial features and matches it against death masks held on databases.
According to Conrad Rudolph, professor of art history and project director at University of California, said;
“Almost every portrait painted before the 19th century was of a person of some importance. As families fell on hard times, many of these portraits were sold and the identities of these subjects were lost. The question we hope to answer is, can we restore these identities?”
Source [Fox News]