The days are divided in a theoretical morning followed by practical work in the afternoon.

After a general introduction on historical technology and knowledge mediation you will be introduced to art technological sources and recipes relevant for the study of black dye, ink, and paint from pre-industrial Northwest Europe.

Through theoretical courses, we will focus on recipes and protocols, and the difficulties typically experienced during reading and interpretation, such as ambiguities related to the procedures, materials and the ingredients’ nomenclature.

During the practical part of the summer school you will work in duo and practice different techniques such as dyeing black on textiles, making inks and pigments. The goal is to experience, observe and assess.

As social activities, we will have dinner in Antwerp and a visit to the Museum Hof van Busleyden in Malines where we will visit the exhibition Back2Black.

You will document your practical work, methodology, ingredients and the obtained results.

In the end, you will have acquired the skills necessary for reading, understanding, interpreting and reconstructing historical recipes.