Studies in the Arts (SINTA)

Portraits of doctoral students

Françoise Delavy

Postal Address
Universität Bern
Graduate School of the Arts and Humanities (GSAH)
Doktoratsprogramm Studies in the Arts (SINTA)
Françoise Delavy
Muesmattstrasse 45
3012 Bern

Françoise Delavy

Françoise Delavy is currently a doctoral candidate in the SINTA program of the Walter Benjamin Kolleg at the University of Bern. She is enrolled at the Institute of History at this University, and she is part of the Institute of Materiality in Art and Culture at the Bern University of Applied Sciences. In October 2023, she achieved a Master of Arts in conservation-restoration of painting and sculptures, specializing in “Investigation” at the Bern University of Applied Sciences. In 2005, she obtained a Degree in conservation-restoration of paintings and sculptures at the Bern University of Applied Sciences. In 2009, she became a scientific collaborator at the Museum of Fine Arts in Lausanne, where she was in charge of the workshop on conservation-restoration. At the same time, she opened her own conservation-restoration workshop in Sion. She continues to work at the Fine Arts Museum in Lausanne.


Prof. Dr. Christian Büschges, institute of History, University of Bern

Prof. Dr. Hanna Hölling, Institute of Materiality in Art and Culture,  Bern University of Applied Science (HKB)

Doctoral project

Colour production in indigenous Colombian communities: a reflection of identity and a partnership with the territory

The aim of this research project is to list and document the ancestral techniques still used to extract and manufacture pigments and dyes in several indigenous Colombian communities living in different ecosystems. The study of materials (pigments and dyes) enables us to investigate the nature of the link between communities and their territory. Investigating the way they are used, including the emergence of shapes and colours, provides a cosmological approach. Transcribing these aspects of their identity helps to reinforce their cultural specificities. Collaboration with different indigenous communities will enable a comparative study of the development of different pictorial languages, linked to specific environments. Through these different parameters, we will attempt to answer the following questions: can we affirm that pigments and dyes are part of the visible aspects that materialize the bonds of partnership and co-creation with a territory? Does each community living in a specific ecosystem materialize its own language through colours and pigments? This project fits in with several ongoing processes: it resonates with a broad movement within regional and national indigenous organizations, where the reactivation of millennia-old knowledge is crucial.


Indigenous Colombian communities / Manufacture of pigments and dyes / Pictorial languages / Conservation of materiality / Identity - Territory / Ecosystem