Restoration and Conservation (One-Year Certificate)

The Restoration and Conservation Certificate is a structured program that aims to train a new generation of future professional conservators in the fundamentals of the ancient Italian and Florentine tradition of restoration and conservation, while integrating it with state-of-the-art techniques and knowledge. The goal is to ensure that students arrive at the highest standard of practice to set them on their path to work professionally in the field.

The Program is structured as a sequence of courses that embrace both theoretical academic knowledge and technical skills needed in this profession. Through a hands-on approach to restoration with a focus on frescoes, paintings, and polychrome wooden sculpture, students learn to engage in a dialogue with each work by embracing it in its complex entirety. The student must manage both the language of art and science to arrive at the most appropriate treatment. In order to accomplish this, there must be a complete understanding of how a piece was created and of the techniques and materials utilized while taking into consideration their properties and characteristics.  

During lab sessions, students take part in the preparation of ancient painting materials, such as egg tempera, handmade oil paints, gesso-colletta primer, gold leaf tooling, and how to use pigments for frescoes and more in order to understand the properties of each work. In order to fully appreciate the characteristics of ancient works of art, students also learn how to create frescoes from the drawing stage to the finished product as an exercise in restoration and conservation. Students are then ready, under the experienced guidance of the instructor, to undertake original paintings and wooden sculptures from the 14th to 19th centuries available in the restoration lab. 

Students learn in our professionally equipped laboratory or on-site in and around Florence on varying projects. Facilities also provide students with a computer lab, and a continuously updated library of books and periodicals. 

The field of conservation and restoration has widened recently lending to a larger scope of career opportunities. Conservators can find careers in areas such as museum conservation, conservation science, preventive conservation, project management and even advocacy work. Students who have successfully completed the One-Year Certificate in Restoration and Conservation, may move onto the Professional Year, thereby completing a two-year program in Restoration and Conservation.


  • RES 160 F – Fresco Painting and Restoration I
    3 credits/90 hours
  • RES 175 F – Painting Conservation I
    3 credits/90 hours
  • RES 185 F – Drawing for Conservators
    3 credits/90 hours
  • ART XXX F – Art History elective
    (to be selected by candidate)
    3 credits/45 hours
  • CHM 135 F – General Chemistry I with Lab
    4 credits/90 hours
  • RES 245 F – Historical Painting Lab I
    3 credits/90 hours
  • RES 260 F – Fresco Painting and Restoration II
    3 credits/90 hours
  • RES 275 F – Painting Conservation II
    3 credits/90 hours
  • ART XXX F – Art History elective
    (to be selected by candidate)
    3 credits/45 hours

Choice of one of the following:

  • CHM 136 F – General Chemistry II with Lab
    4 credits/90 hours
  • PDM / PRI / PHO / SCU XXX F – Fine Arts elective (to be selected by candidate)
    3 credits/60-90 hours

Course descriptions are available in the Academic Catalog.


Fully equipped lab features:

– Authentic pieces from 14th to 19th centuries to restore
– Industry skills with the collaboration with professional institutes of Florence
– Computer lab
– Continuously updated library of books and magazines