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Beth Wheeler (West Virginia University)
2018 participant in Traditional Painting: Materials, Methods and Restoration Issues

“I participated in the 2018 San Gemini Preservation Studies Traditional Painting program, and it was an absolutely wonderful experience!! The teachers are very knowledgeable, and we had several guest speakers as well who were very talented and had completed what appeared to be impossible restorations. I learned so much in just four weeks! Also, the hands-on component of this program is INCREDIBLE–you don’t just learn about traditional fresco, sgraffito, egg tempera and oil techniques in the classroom, but you actually try them out. The studio has to be one of the most beautiful in the world–a former Franciscan monastery looking out over the gorgeous Umbrian countryside. San Gemini itself is a charming little town that retains its medieval character–it’s small, but there are several restaurants and bars, summer festivals, and the amazing surrounding countryside to explore. I was also able to travel on the weekends, exploring places like Narni and Assisi. Sometimes trips can be coordinated, if you plan in advance, or you’re free to travel on your own–the coordinators are always ready and willing to help! I would participate in this program again in a heartbeat and highly recommend it. It will be a summer well spent!”

Kelly Cooper (Virginia Tech)
2018 participant in Restoration and Analysis of Historic Buildings

“The San Gemini Preservation Studies program gave me incredible skills, incomparable experiences, and beautiful memories I will carry with me throughout my life. I continue to think in awe of the hands-on opportunities I was given by the wonderful and intelligent faculty. I do not know of any other program that is so dedicated to providing its participants with strong skills in restoring/preserving historic materials and an understanding of interdisciplinary approaches to preservation. Additionally, the amazing friends and people I met in the program and in the town have filled my heart with joy. While many of us are scattered throughout the world, we share a unique experience together of preserving historic materials in a small hill town in Umbria and traveling through Italy. For anyone who wants to see their passion for historic preservation grow beyond measure and obtain real hands-on skills, there is no better program.”

Emily Joyce (Queen’s University)
2018 participant in Traditional Painting: Materials, Methods and Restoration Issues

“I had the most AMAZING experience in the Traditional Paintings course at San Gemini Preservation Studies. I learned so much in my lectures and studio class from professors and teachers working in the field of preservation. The professors are very passionate about their work and so talented at what they do, which shows in the amount of care they put into their lessons. There were many times where the teachers and program coordinators went out of their way to make sure students felt welcomed and comfortable in San Gemini, which really helped when settling in for the 4 weeks you spend there. San Gemini is also one of the most beautiful places in Italy I have ever been, with amazing food, people and scenery. I wish I could go back! I couldn’t think of a better way to have spent my summer. would HIGHLY recommend!!”

Lori Davis (Texas Women’s University)
2018 participant in Paper Restoration in Books and Archival Documents

“The paper preservation and restoration course was led by experts in the field of archives, preservation, and conservation. These teachers led us through the history of paper making to repairing documents. The experiments, field trips, guest lecturers, and more were unforgettable and fueled my future studies to archival work. I cannot recommend this program enough. When I searched for similar programs, none were as extensive or complete as this one. Not only are the studies and professors incredible, the people, scenery, and food are just as lovely. Our group ranged from 19 to 83, and everyone there would tell you to go as soon as you can!”

Alexandra Ayoob (West Virginia University)
2018 participant in Restoration and Analysis of Historic Buildings

“I can’t recommend this program enough. Not only do you get hands on conservation experience in such a historically rich area, but you get to work with the incredible, interdisciplinary minds that this field attracts! The program coordinators provide the utmost insight and warmth to the point where every encounter with the team is both familial and a learning experience. My heart is full as I think back to my time there. The experience is unforgettable to say the least! I myself hope to continue learning with them one day.”


Gabriele Vigilante (Cuneo Academy of Fine Arts)
2018 participant in Traditional Painting: Materials, Methods and Restoration Issues

“This summer I had the chance to be part of the San Gemini Preservation Studies. The experience has allowed me to meet competent and available teachers, to enhance and safeguard the cultural heritage, both locally with trips organized in the Italian territory and internationally with theoretical lessons and practices of the Ancient Traditional Painting. The course has been useful to broaden the ethical and practical principles of the foundations that regulate the Italian conservative restoration, while working and sharing ideas with students from all over the world have made this experience fundamental to my education. For more information about the course, please contact me.”


Sampoorna Bhattacharya (Carleton University)
2018 participant in Restoration and Analysis of Historic Buildings

“I highly recommend San Gemini Preservation Studies for anyone interested in the field. I was a participant in the Touching the Stones program in 2018 and came from an architectural history background. The lessons were fantastic, with esteemed, respected guest lecturers. The practical elements of drawing and documenting or performing restoration made me feel much more connected to the field and to history. It was intense and rich and opened my eyes to all elements in historic building restoration carried out by different sectors. It is simply an amazing opportunity to meet people interested in conservation from around the world, to immerse yourself in Italian culture and to make life-long memories. This was my first program abroad and the San Gemini group and the town itself made me feel extremely safe! If you are interested in history and architecture, this is a program you should not miss.”


Beatriz Sierra Guzmán (Birkbeck, University of London)
2018 participant in Traditional Painting: Materials, Methods and Restoration Issues

“I had such an UNBELIEVABLE experience during my stay in San Gemini. I didn’t only learn so much in this course but also met amazing people! Teachers were very supportive during lectures and workshops, and my colleagues were talented, hard-working and friendly. I also had the opportunity to travel around San Gemini with friends. Italy is a beautiful country with incredible Medieval and Renaissance Art, and I had the big pleasure to stay there for a month!”


Simeone Colucci (Academy of Fine Arts in Naples)
2018 participant in Restoration and Analysis of Historic Buildings

“This amazing summer school gave me the opportunity to meet new people and improve my skills thanks to the all friendly and academic activities organized during the period. All the professors we met gave us important and precious lessons, but also important tips for our careers. The programme is the perfect example of seriousness and professionally conservation course in Italy, and not only in Italy.”

San Gemini Preservation Studies
International Institute for Restoration and Preservation Studies

203 Seventh Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11215, USA
tel. 718 768 3508