Accessibility statement

Dr Katharine Harrison

Associate Lecturer



BA, MA, PhD (York)

Katie is an Associate Lecturer in Medieval Art. Her research explores the medieval creation and adaptation of textual and visual narratives across diverse media, including stained glass, sculpture, manuscripts and wall paintings. She is particularly interested in the transmission and augmentation of hagiographic narratives, and the relationships between monumental narratives and their architectural settings and audiences.

Katie’s interdisciplinary interests stem from her BA in English Literature and History of Art and her MA in Stained Glass Conservation and Heritage Management. Following her MA, she gained conservation experience across Britain and Germany through a forty-week travelling scholarship from the Worshipful Company of Glaziers. These experiences informed Katie’s WRoCAH-funded interdisciplinary doctoral research into the fifteenth-century St Cuthbert Window, York Minster, which she is preparing for publication with the generous assistance of a Paul Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship.

She has taught undergraduate modules on the transmission, revival and reinterpretation of classical antiquity in Western Europe, and fourteenth-century English art and architecture. She has also taught undergraduate and postgraduate seminars on medieval and Victorian stained glass.

Before joining the department, Katie worked as Conservation Research Officer for the York Consortium for Conservation and Craftsmanship (YCCC), as a freelance stained glass consultant and as editor of Vidimus. She recently co-curated York Minster’s exhibition Light, Glass & Stone: Conserving the St Cuthbert Window.


Katie’s research explores medieval narratives and their relationships with the contemporary devotional, architectural and political contexts within which they were created. She is particularly interested in the ways in which medieval artists responded to the challenges of different media and settings, and changes in visual storytelling conventions throughout the medieval period.

Katie’s stained glass research has focused upon the design and reception of medieval narrative windows, as well as later attitudes to medieval stained glass, including the collection, restoration and recreation of medieval artworks and techniques in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Her interdisciplinary doctoral research into the fifteenth-century St Cuthbert Window, York Minster, investigated the history and design of the window, to enable the original narrative of the Life of St Cuthbert to be identified and the window’s relationship with hagiographic narratives in other media to be explored.


‘Narrative from Nonsense: Questions of Identity in the St Cuthbert Window, York Minster’ in Stained Glass Conservation: Preserving Identity: Proceedings of the 11th Forum for the Conservation and Technology of Historic Stained Glass, Girona & Barcelona, 7-9 July 2022, 73-80. Girona: Corpus Vitrearum Catalunya.

Review of [Brigitte Kurmann-Schwarz and Elizabeth Pastan (eds.), Investigations in Medieval Stained Glass: Materials, Methods, and Expressions (Reading Medieval Sources, 3)] in The Burlington Magazine, Vol. 163, No. 1417, Medieval art and architecture (April 2021), 376-377.

Review of [Volker Schier, Corine Schleif, and Anne Simon (eds. and trans.), Pepper for Prayer: The Correspondence of the Birgittine Nun Katerina Lemmel, 1516–1525] in Vidimus, no. 133 (October 2020).

‘“There is no trace of it in the Minster glass now”: An investigation into the east window of St. Martin’s Coney Street and its eighteenth-century acquisition by York Minster.’ York Historian, Vol. 32 (2015), 2-29.

‘Adornment or Allegory? A Consideration of the Significance of the Figural Capitals in the Choir of York Minster.’, York Historian, Vol. 31 (2014), 2-41.

‘The Stained Glass of Steinfeld Abbey Cloister: An Investigation into its Dispersal and Condition’ in Vidimus, no. 81 (June 2014)

‘The Silver Stain Myth’, Newsletter of the ICOM Committee for Conservation, Glass and Ceramics Working Group, Issue 23, January 2014 (ISSN 0960-5657).



Reinventing Antiquity

Jerusalem in Western Medieval Art

Seeing and Being Seen: English Art in the 14th Century


Approaches to an Interdisciplinary Methodology

External Activity

Katie has a wide-ranging interest in art and cultural heritage. She has served as an elected committee member of the British Archaeological Association since 2020, and was elected to the committee of the British Corpus Vitrearum Medii Aevi in 2022. She has previously worked as Conservation Research Officer for the York Consortium for Conservation and Craftsmanship (YCCC), as a freelance stained glass consultant and as editor of Vidimus, an online magazine dedicated to stained glass.

She co-curated the exhibition Light, Glass & Stone: Conserving the St Cuthbert Window, working in partnership with York Minster’s heritage team. The exhibition, which opened in June 2021 at York Minster, will remain on show until 2024.

Katie has extensive experience in the voluntary sector, developing public engagement activities, including demonstrations, talks, STEM workshops, exhibitions and webinars.

Katharine Harrison

Contact details

Dr Katharine Harrison
Associate Lecturer
History of Art
Room V/N/128

Tel: 01904 326698

Current office hours are available to view here