Curation, Conservation and the Ceramic Object





Dates: July 24 - August 14
Days/Times: Fridays, 10am - 12noon EST
Level: Beginner - Advanced
Instructor: Multiple

Course Description: 

The Harvard Art Museums and the Harvard Ceramics Program have been close collaborators in support of scholarly research of ceramic objects for many years. This course offers participants the opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of historic ceramic objects from across the globe. Five curators and conservation scientists from the Harvard Art Museums will discuss their research of ceramic objects within the collection. Each class meeting will feature a different topic. (4 classes)

Friday, July 24th 10am – 12noon: Jessica Levin Martinez, Director, Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell Clay – Modeling African Design, Susan Blier, Allen Whitehill Clowes Chair of Fine Arts and of African and African American Studies, Jen Thum, Inga Maren Otto Curatorial Fellow and Nicole Flam, Graduate Fellow.

NOTE - For those also registered for Session 1, the lecture scheduled for July 24th will be held from 1pm - 3pm.

Friday, July 31st 10am – 12noon: Gabriella Szalay, Renke B. and Pamela M. Thye Curatorial Fellow in the Busch-Reisinger Museum – Materials, processes and people involved in the manufacture of European porcelain during the 18th and 19th centuries. Gabriella will be joined by contemporary artist Arlene Shechet!

Friday, August 7th 10am – 12noon: Katherine Eremin, Patricia Cornwell Senior Conservation Scientist, Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies, Harvard Art Museum - Cobalt in Ceramics

Friday, August 14th, 10am – 12noon: Elizabeth La Duc, Prehistoric Chinese ceramics: coil building, wheel throwing, and x-radiography



Course Fees: Free for Harvard College Undergraduate Students, $120 for Harvard Graduate Students and Adult Community. Harvard Employees should register as Adult Community.

  • Adult Community: General Public; Harvard alumni, fellows, Extension School students, and faculty/staff who are not TAP-eligible; students from universities other than Harvard
  • Harvard Employees eligible for the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP): TAP regular (employees worked less than 15 years) and TAP long service (employees who worked 15 or more years at Harvard)
  • Harvard College Undergraduate Students: Currently enrolled students at Harvard College. This does not include Harvard Extension School Undergraduate Students
  • Harvard Graduate Students: Currently enrolled students in a Harvard University Graduate Program. This does not include Harvard Extension School Graduate Students or Harvard University Doctoral Candidates.

Register on-line here!

For questions regarding course content, policies or materials, please contact Director, Kathy King at

For questions regarding registration, please contact Administrative Coordinator, Ji-Eun Kim at

Location: Zoom

Image Above: An X-radiograph alongside a photograph of Johann Joachim Kändler’s The Coppersmith, manufactured by Meissen Porcelain Manufactory, c. 1750. Hard-paste porcelain with polychrome enamel decoration. Harvard Art Museums/Busch-Reisinger Museum, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Edward M. Pflueger, BR59.150.



This course was made possible through the support of the Harvard Art Museums.

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