Paint and Culture in Medieval England: a study of medieval English art and culture using archives of paint samples.
Supervisors: Professor Gervase Rosser & Dr Lucy Wrapson, with additional supervisory support from Dr Spike Bucklow.
My doctoral project combines the complementary perspectives of art history and technical study to examine the materials and techniques of English medieval painting. I will explore how technical data about paintings, from existing samples collected by conservators, can be harnessed to address questions about culture and society in medieval Britain.
My research draws on the archive of paint samples housed at the Hamilton Kerr Institute (HKI), the paintings conservation department of the Fitzwilliam Museum (Cambridge). The study of paint samples in cross-section, often conducted in tandem with conservation treatments, can yield information on the pigments, binding media, and layer structures of paintings. This technical data can lead to extraordinary insights when integrated into broader historical enquiries. For example, uses of certain materials can reflect workshop organisation or patterns of trade. I am particularly interested in examining artworks which span a variety of media, genres and contexts, the crossovers between disciplines including art history, conservation and archaeology, and approaches to the study of fragmentary artworks in the historiography. I am excited to draw on the expertise of academics across the humanities and conservation spheres.
I completed a BA in History of Art at the University of Warwick and a Postgraduate Diploma (now an MA) in the Conservation of Easel Paintings at The Courtauld Institute of Art, followed by a two-year paintings conservation internship at the Hamilton Kerr Institute. My DPhil is generously supported by a Cowley Scholarship in association with an OOC-AHRC-DTP Scholarship, and the Clarendon Fund.
Waldron, K., Burnstock, A., van den Berg, K. J., van Eikema Hommes, M., Megens, L. and de Groot, S., 2021. ‘The characterisation of discoloured oil bound copper green glazes in a 17th-century harpsichord lid, with reconstruction research’, Studies in Conservation, DOI: 10.1080/00393630.2021.1954440
Waldron, K., 2020. ‘Exploring the work of Sir Gerald Festus Kelly PRA (1879-1972), ‘the most reliable portrait painter of his time’’. In: A. Wright, S. Woodcock, L. Wrapson, C. Braybrook and F. Campbell, (eds.), Hamilton Kerr Institute Bulletin (8), 83-103.
Waldron, K. and Mercer-Golden, Z., 2018. ‘Lid paintings and their conservation’. In: T. de Paepe, (ed.), 2018. Antwerp: City of Harpsichords. Antwerp: Museum Vleeshuis, 2-69.
‘The polychromy of a group of late 15th-century angel roof sculptures at St Agnes Church, Cawston, Norfolk (UK)’, presented at Working Materials and Materials at Work in Medieval Art: The Courtauld Institute of Art 25th Annual Medieval Postgraduate Student Colloquium, 8 February 2020.