Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage


Let me be the first to welcome you to the Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage, where Yale’s extraordinary museum collections meet leading scholars from the sciences and the humanities.  The IPCH is a research institute where we delve into the materiality of the past, from dinosaurs to Marcel Duchamp to F. Holland Day.  Our laboratories are a membrane away from the conservation studio where University collections are studied and treated, and just across the way from modern collection storage facilities and high-tech classrooms for object examination. Here our scientists work to understand cultural objects and manage the natural changes to their materials, so that we may preserve the past and safeguard access today and long into the future.  Our work brings together technical experts and students and teachers in the humanities, providing insight needed to understand and interpret creations across boundaries of time and culture.  We act to preserve the world’s cultural heritage, including its most vulnerable, helping to defend it from the depredations of commerce, war, and indifference.

Founded in 2012, the IPCH is having impact that stretches from present-day Syria to 12-year-olds everywhere. Scholars and schoolchildren are encouraged to examine a cuneiform tablet of Pythagoras’s famous theorem in three dimensions, and to come along on the discovery of the lost recipes of 3rd-century Roman paints. Our efforts bring the study of cultural objects into the real world as well, as we assess the evidentiary impact of photographs on behalf of the Innocence Project.  Come back to our site often, and you will find out what we are discovering; with news of the past and meaning for today.

Yours truly,
Mary Miller
Senior Director, Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage
Sterling Professor of the History of Art


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