STITAH & SITAH Name Directory

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Summer Teachers Institute in Technical Art History (STITAH)

The Summer Teachers Institute in Technical Art History (STITAH) is an intensive week-long professional development program for art history faculty from universities across North America. The result of collaborative efforts between the Conservation Center at the Institute of Fine Arts (New York University), the Yale University Art Gallery (YUAG) and Yale Center for British Art (YCBA), and the Kress Foundation, the course alternates between the Conservation Center and Yale University. Local conservators, conservation scientists and curators, along with featured guest lecturers from peer institutions, both national and international, present case studies in technical art history and lead practical sessions that allow participants to closely observe original works of art, both in the gallery as well as the conservation laboratory. Hands-on studio exercises replicate traditional artists’ studio practices and demonstrations of analytical equipment illustrate how technical studies might inform art historical research. Professional discussions and informal conversations about all topics covered are encouraged throughout, and post-course support is offered through case studies adapted expressly for the STITAH participants, for their own classroom use.

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Summer Institute in Technical Art History (SITAH)

The Summer Institute in Technical Art History was held for five consecutive years at the Conservation Center, Institute of Fine Arts at New York University. The course was recently re-inaugurated at Harvard University, where it is titled the Summer Institute for Technical Studies in Art (SITSA). Similar to the SITAH, the SITSA is an intensive two-week workshop for a select group of Ph.D. candidates in art history. Participants are immersed in the interdisciplinary, collaborative environment of the Harvard Art Museums and the neighboring Department of History of Art and Architecture, as well as other academic and cultural partners in the Greater Boston area. Under the direction of Francesca Bewer, research curator for conservation and technical studies programs at the Harvard Art Museums, SITSA unites expert faculty—conservators, conservation scientists, curators, art historians, artists, and other makers—to engage a cohort of 15 students in close looking at works of art; hands-on art making; guided technical examination and analysis; critical readings; and discussions with experts. Students are encouraged to build relationships within the group, in the hope that their exchanges will enrich their own research, foster future collaborations, and help spur wider integration of technical studies within the broader field of art history.

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