SHORT COURSE Collaborative research on 17th-century Dutch genre painting: Art history based on visual exam and XRF analysis

The RKD – Netherlands Institute for Art History and Mauritshuis invite MA-students, PhD-students, art historians, conservators, and researchers to attend the course and public lecture about collaborative research on 17th-century Dutch Genre Painting: Art history based on visual exam and XRF analysis.

Date:                    30 October – 1 November 2019
Location:             RKD – Netherlands Institute for Art History, The Hague Mauritshuis, The Hague Museum Prinsenhof, Delft

This course is organized on the occasion of the visit of the RKD-Mauritshuis Visiting Fellows in Technical Studies, E. Melanie Gifford, Research  Conservator for Paintings Technology and Lisha Glinsman, Conservation Scientist, both based at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

The program includes several lectures, case studies, real-time examination of paintings in the conservation studio of the Mauritshuis and two guided museum tours.




About the RKD – Mauritshuis Visiting Fellows in Technical Studies


  1. Melanie Gifford is a Research Conservator for Painting Technology at the National Gallery of Art in Washington where she uses technical analysis to consider the artistic decision-making process of Dutch and Flemish painters. She is trained in both art conservation and art history. Her PhD in art history traced the development of naturalistic Dutch landscape paintings at the start of the 17th century, focusing on the impact of innovative painting practices. She specializes in microscopic paint analysis and teaches these techniques in art conservation training programs.


Lisha Glinsman is a Conservation Scientist at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, where she investigates the methods and materials used by artists. Her PhD thesis from the University of Amsterdam addresses the application of X-Ray fluorescence spectrometry to the study of museum objects. She serves on international advisory committees and her research addresses the sharing and comparability of quantitative XRF data between institutions. She was recently part of a team at the National Gallery of Art that developed a customized state-of-the-art macro XRF mapping system.


Further contributors to the course are: Marya Albrecht (Paintings Conservator Mauritshuis), Edwin Buijsen (Head of Collections Mauritshuis), Sabine Craft-Giepmans (Senior Curator Portrait Iconography, RKD), Ellis Dullaart (Curator Dutch and Flemish Old Master Painting, RKD), David de Haan (Curator of Art Collections, Museum Prinsenhof), Sabrina Meloni (Paintings Conservator Mauritshuis), Chris Stolwijk (General Director, RKD)


This course is free of charge; coffee, drinks, two lunches and public lecture are included. To apply for the seminar, please send a motivation letter (max ½ A4) and your Curriculum Vitae to Ellis Dullaart ( Deadline for submission is 27 September 2019. After your submission we will contact you soonest to inform you on your admission to the course. The number of attendants is limited to 20. Bringing your own laptop with internet connection is recommended. The spoken language will be English.