David Park

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David Park

Professor and Director, Conservation of Wall Painting Department
David Park

David Park was educated at Manchester University and the University of Cambridge. From 1980 to 1985 he was a Leverhulme Research Fellow at The Courtauld Institute of Art, undertaking the National Survey of Medieval Wall Painting, of which he remains the Coordinator. Since 1985, he has been Director of the Conservation of Wall Painting Department, which he established with Sharon Cather.

In 2001 David was a Visiting Professor in the History of Art, Université Paris 1, Panthéon-Sorbonne, and was the lead researcher for an exhibition on medieval polychrome sculpture at the Henry Moore Institute (Leeds) in 2002-03. He organised The Courtauld’s 2009 conference ‘A Rajput Pleasure Palace: the Art of Nagaur in Context’, featuring one of the Conservation of Wall Painting Department’s current projects in India . He has been Chairman of the Paintings Committee of the Council for the Care of Churches, and is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries and of the International Institute for Conservation.

David is also Director of The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Centre for Buddhist Art and Conservation at The Courtauld, including its MA programme and related events such as the Buddhist Art Forum of 2012 (published in 2013 as Art of Merit: Studies in Buddhist Art and Conservation). His art-historical publications focus mainly on western medieval art, the most recent co-authored book – Wall Paintings of Eton – being awarded the 2013 William M. B. Berger Prize for British Art History.


  • MA in the Conservation of Wall Painting
  • MA in Buddhist Art: History and Conservation

PhD students


  • Sanjay Dhar, ‘Assessing and Managing Risks to Buddhist Wall Paintings in Ladakh’, supervised with Professor Deborah Swallow
  • Sreekumar Menon, ‘Early Period Buddhist Wall Paintings of Ladakh from the 11th to the Early 13th Century: Materials, Techniques and Conservation Issues’, supervised with Prof. Sharon Cather
  • Jane Spooner, ‘Royal Wall Paintings in England in the Second Half of the Fourteenth Century’, supervised with Professor Paul Crossley

Recently completed

  • James Cameron, ‘Sedilia in Medieval England’, supervised with Prof. Joanna Cannon
  • Jessica Barker, ‘Monuments and Marriage in Late-Medieval England, 1300-1500’, supervised with Prof. John Lowden (2014)
  • Michael Carter, ‘The Art and Architecture of the Cistercians in Northern England in the Late Middle Ages, c.1300-1539’ (2013)
  • Géraldine Victoir, ‘Gothic Wall Painting in Picardy, ca.1250-ca.1350, supervised with Prof. Paul Crossley (2010)
  • Mellie Naydenova-Slade, ‘Images of the Holy Kinship in England, c.1170 to c.1525’, supervised with Prof. Paul Crossley (2008)
  • Jun Zheng, ‘Conservation at Heritage Sites: A Critical Review and Case Studies’ (2008)

Research interests

  • Medieval wall painting, especially in England and France
  • Medieval art in northern England
  • Asian wall painting
  • Buddhist art

Recent publications


  • Art of Merit: Studies in Buddhist Art and its Conservation (Proceedings of the Buddhist Art Forum 2012), ed. with K. Wangmo and S. Cather, London 2013.
  • Wall Paintings of Eton (with E. Howe, H. McBurney, S. Rickerby and L. Shekede), London 2012.   Winner of William M. B. Berger Prize for British Art History 2013.
  • Cistercian Art and Architecture in the British Isles, ed. with C. Norton (paperback edition, with new Preface), Cambridge 2011.
  • The Temple Church in London: History, Architecture, Art, ed. with R. Griffith-Jones, Woodbridge 2010


  • ‘The decoration of the Cathedral and Priory in the Middle Ages’, in Durham Cathedral: History, Fabric and Culture, ed. D. Brown, New Haven and London 2015, 167-85.
  • ‘New approaches to conserving the wall painting heritage of Bhutan’ (with S. Rickerby, L. Shekede, D. Tshering and T. Gyalpo), in An Unbroken History: Conserving East Asian Works of Art and Heritage (Contributions to the IIC Hong Kong Congress, 22-26 September 2014; Studies in Conservation, 59, Supplement 1), ed. A. Nevin et al., London 2014, 127-30.
  • ‘The earliest Holy Kinship image, the Salomite controversy, and a little-known centre of learning in northern England in the twelfth century’ (with M. Naydenova-Slade), Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, 71 (2008), 95-119.

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