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Dear Colleagues,

I am very pleased to be able to write to you, at this turn of the year, to announce Bard Graduate Center’s inaugural Summer School in Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material Culture to be held on West 86th Street from June 29-July 10, 2020. This launches an annual program for undergraduates that will be open to rising 3rd and 4th year students and will provide an intensive, two-week seminar taught by BGC faculty aimed at exposing students to object-based learning and the interdisciplinary methodologies that underpin graduate level work. Instruction will take full advantage of the outstanding collections of New York City.

The 2020 Summer School, “Dress—Design—Material Culture,1850-2000” will be co-taught by Professors Paul Stirton and Michele Majer and will carry three undergraduate credits. Their exciting program will cover the broad range of topics and approaches used by our faculty, such as history of collecting and display; design studies; fashion, dress, and textiles; conservation; and book arts. Instruction will take place in small seminars, museum galleries, and conservation studios and laboratories. Workshops will incorporate BGC’s spring exhibition on designer Eileen Gray with teaching in BGC’s Gallery.

We have developed this program to help prepare undergraduates in the humanities to think critically using object-based approaches. We hope that this program will help them develop research and writing skills as well as provide practical exposure to the field of museum/curatorial studies. We all know how important it is to excite and attract future students to the advanced study of the past through things. Further information can be found on our website at and we hope you might share this announcement, as well as this flyer, with interested students.

Peter N. Miller
Dean and Professor