Fellows 2011–2012

  • Università Ca' Foscari di Venezia

    Dance libretto as social text: the Italian dance librettos in the Cia Fornaroli collection at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts

    2011-2012: Fall

    Stefano Tomassini studied dance and drama. He currently teaches Dance History at the Ca Foscari Venezia University and Il testo in scena (Drama) at the University of the Italian Switzerland, Lugano. In the area of dance studies he has focused on Salvatore Viganò (Premio Marino Moretti), Enzo Cosimi, the 'choreosophical' writings of Aurel M. Milloss, the lectures of the American dance pioneer Ted Shawn, and dance libretti on the myths of Adonis. In 2008- 2009, he was a Fulbright-Schuman Research Scholar; in 2010, a Scholar-in- residence at the Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival.

  • Università di Roma La Sapienza

    Possessions and reputation in 17th-century Rome

    2011-2012: Fall

    A graduate of La Sapienza Università di Roma, Renata Ago has always taught early modern history, first as a "ricercatore" at La Sapienza, then as a "professore associato" at the University of Cagliari and finally as a "professore ordinario" at La Sapienza.

    During this time she has also been fellow or visiting professor in several institutions: in 1997/98 she was Jean Monnet fellow at the European University Institute in Florence; in 1990 and again in 2008 visiting professor at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris; in 2010 visiting professor at the Stanford University. She has been member of the editorial board of different academic journals like Memoria. Rivista di storia delle donne, Continuity & Change, Melanges de l'Ecole Française de Rome and Quaderni storici (of which she is currently the Director).

    She participates in the Advisory Committee del "Accademia di San Luca Project," carried on by the CASVA (Center for Advanced Studies in the Visual Arts) in Washington, and from 2008 to 2010 she was a member of the "Conseil scientifique" and the "Conseil d'administration" of the Ecole Française de Rome.

    Her scientific interests are specifically devoted to the social history of early modern times. Within this framework she has worked on rural communities and feudality in 16th to 18th centuries, on which she has written several essays and two books (Un feudo esemplare. Immobilismo padronale e astuzia contadina nel Lazio del '700, Fasano, Schena, 1988; and La feudalità nell'età moderna, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 1994).

    She has also worked on family and gender history, and on the relationship between social exchanges, economic practices and institutions, on which she has edited two special issues of Quaderni storici (nn. 88 and 101) and written the book Economia barocca. Mercato e istituzioni nella Roma del Seicento, Roma, Donzelli, 2006.

    More recently her interests have shifted to issues concerning consumption and material culture, on which she edited a special issue of Quaderni storici devoted to "cultural consumption," and published the book Il gusto delle cose. Una storia degli oggetti nella Roma del Seicento, Roma, Donzelli, 2006 (forthcoming in English translation for University of Chicago Press).

    From 2009 to 2014, she is serving as the general scientific coordinator of a European project, "European Network for Baroque Cultural Heritage – ENBaCH," involving eight universities from six different European countries and funded by the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency of the European Commission.

  • Dumbarton Oaks Research Library - Harvard University

    Papal involvement in the spread of Greek culture in the Medieval Latin West

    2011-2012: Spring

    Reka Forrai holds a PhD in Medieval Studies from Central European University (Budapest). Her area of expertise is medieval intellectual history, and in particular the history of medieval translation theories and practices, with an emphasis of Greek-Latin translations. Transmission of knowledge and language are the focus of her research, as well as the question of patronage, issues of learning and power, and cultural policies of medieval institutions.
    She has written both her MA and PhD dissertations on subjects pertaining to Greek-Latin translation (MA, 2000 – "The Latin Tradition of Aristotle's De Anima (1120–1270): the Relationship between Text and Commentary", PhD 2008 – "The Interpreter of the Popes. The Translation Project of Anastasius Bibliothecarius)". The results of both were published in several articles. Dr. Forrai is currently working on a large scale post-doctoral project "The involvement of the medieval papacy in the transmission of Greek learning to the West", investigating the role of the pontifical court in the process of translations from Greek to Latin from late antiquity until the late Middle Ages.

  • State University of New York at Stony Brook

    The contemporary performance of Italian Baroque opera


    Mauro Calcagno is Associate Professor of Musicology at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. His work focuses on early opera (especially those by Claudio Monteverdi and Francesco Cavalli), the madrigal, and performance studies, with an emphasis on early modern Italy. Calcagno has recently completed a book entitled From Madrigal to Opera: Monteverdi's Staging of the Self, to be shortly published by University of California Press. He served as the President of the New England Chapter of the American Musicological Society, and he currently directs a new online digital edition of Luca Marenzio's secular works (http://www.marenzio.org).

  • Université de Fribourg

    Ambiguity in Italian Renaissance images of love

    2011-2012: Fall

    Marianne Koos is Privatdozentin (PD) of Art History at the Université de Fribourg. After completing her MA at the Univ. of Vienna and her Ph.D. at the Goethe-Univ. in Frankfurt/Main (2001), she was Assistant Professor in Art History at the Universities of Basel and Zürich and, since 2006, at the University of Fribourg (working with Prof. V. I. Stoichita; Habilitation and appointment as PD in 2010). Her work focuses on Italian art of the 16th and 17th century, with special emphasis on Venetian and Roman painting, as well as on French painting of the 18th century in a broader European and transcultural perspective. She has published, lectured, and taught on the iconography of love, problems of portraiture, questions of gender and postcolonial studies, skin and surface, tactility in the visual arts, or the material agency of artifacts in an anthropological perspective. She is the author of Bildnisse des Begehrens. Das lyrische Männerporträt in der venezianischen Malerei des frühen 16. Jahrhunderts – Giorgione, Tizian und ihr Umkreis (2006) and Haut, Farbe und Medialität. Oberfläche im Werk von Jean-Étienne Liotard (1702-1789) (Habil. 2009, forthcoming). In 2003 she was awarded the Prix ART-FOCUS (senior) of the Association of Swiss Art Historians (ASHHA/VKKS), and in 2008 the Prix Jubilé of the Swiss Academy of Humanities and Social Sciences (SAGW). She has had numerous fellowships including those from the Deutsches Kunsthistorisches Institut (Max-Planck-Institut) in Florence, the Centro Tedesco di Studi Veneziani in Venice, the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, and the Gerda Henkel Stiftung. In 2012/13 she will be a research fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg, Institute for Advanced Studies in Berlin.

  • University of Massachusetts Boston

    The social affordance model: a sensorimotor view of intentional action and aesthetic involvement


    Maria Brincker received her Ph.D. in Philosophy and Cognitive Science from the Graduate Center at the City University of New York earlier this year. She spent the past semester as a visiting scholar at NYU and will be Assistant Professor of Philosophy at UMass Boston from 2012. She studied Philosophy and Psychology at the University of Copenhagen, in her native Denmark, and also in Paris, primarily at Nanterre and the Sorbonne. This educational path --repeatedly intersecting with both the Continental and the Anglo-American tradition in philosophy and also with both the humanities and the natural sciences-- has left a defining mark on her heavily interdisciplinary approach.

    In her dissertation, directed by Jesse Prinz, she criticizes the traditional theoretical frameworks surrounding the neurological discovery and popularization of so-called mirror neurons. Brincker proposes an alternative "social affordance model" for understanding these and other sensorimotor circuits and their functional role in various cognitive processes. She explicitly uses the analyses of mirror neuron research to advocate for a broader paradigm shift towards more relational and embodied frameworks for understanding the mind.

    This doctoral research will also provide the foundation for Brincker's exploration of what one might call "aesthetic affordances," and the role of motor processes and social relations in the appreciation of art, which she will undertake while at the Italian Academy. For more information see her personal website: https://sites.google.com/site/mariabrincker

  • Università di Bologna

    Techniques for structural damage identification on the basis of uncertain data

    2011-2012: Spring

    Co-sponsored by the Department of Civil Engineering and Engineering Mechanics

    Marco Savoia has been Full Professor of Structural Engineering at DISTART, Faculty of Engineering of the University of Bologna (Italy) since 2000, where he teaches Structural Engineering, Advanced Design of Structures and Earthquake Engineering (in English). He is currently doing his scientific research at the same university. Previously he held the position of Assistant Professor at the University of Bologna (1992-1998) and Associate Professor at the University of Parma (1998-2000). He has been a Visiting Professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute (1990, 1997), Texas A&M University (1993), the University of Virginia (1997), and Florida Atlantic University (2003, 2004). He gave a number of seminars and short courses in those universities. 

    From 2001 to 2010, Marco Savoia has been the Coordinator of the Structural Tests Laboratory of the DISTART Department of the University of Bologna. He is presently the Director of the Building & Construction Interdepartmental Center of Applied Research (CIRI) of the University of Bologna.

    He is author of about 250 scientific papers, more than 60 in international journals with referees. He is presently the director of two research projects, one funded by the Reluis consortium (Civil Protection Department) on the seismic vulnerability of existing RC buildings, and one funded by the European Community on the fatigue behavior of steel railway bridges.

    He is a Member of the CNR Commission for Codes and Guidelines (since 2009), and a Member of the Science Academy of Bologna (since 2007). From 2004 to 2007, he was an expert member of the National Council of Public Works.

    Since 2007 he has been the Chairman of the Civil Engineering Higher Education program of the Faculty of Engineering. He promoted the International Master in Civil Engineering, as well as the Dual Degree program together with the Columbia University in New York. He is presently the Coordinator of a European Project Erasmus – Curriculum Development action named "SASICE – Safety and Sustainability in Civil Engineering," uniting 9 universities in Europe.

    His main research topics are in the area of seismic engineering, innovative systems for seismic protection, computational modeling of reinforced concrete structures, reliability and stability of structures, composite structures, damage in concrete material and structures, advanced technologies for concrete, identification techniques, and health monitoring of structures.

  • Università di Siena

    In the footsteps of Momus: irony and vituperio in early modern art criticism


    After obtaining her degree (1995) from the University of Pisa, Maddalena Spagnolo attended a three year post graduate course of Specializzazione in Art History 1995-1998. She was awarded her Ph.D. in 2003 under the supervision of Professor Antonio Pinelli. Her thesis "Geografia e storia della fortuna del Correggio 1528-1657" was published as a book in 2005. From 2002-2006, Dr. Spagnolo taught Art Criticism at the University of Siena (Arezzo) and is currently teaching Art History Methods. She also supervised numerous degrees and MA theses. From 1999 onwards, she has been spending a substantial part of each academic year in London, working at the Warburg Institute, where she was awarded a Francis Yates Fellowship in 2005. Additionally, she has been awarded with: British Academy- Accademia dei Lincei in 2004; Villa I Tatti (Harvard University) in 2008; Italian Academy (Columbia University) 2006; Bibliotheca Hertziana (Max-Planck-Institut) in 2009; Kunsthistorishes Institut (MPI) in 2008, 2010 and 2011. Her research interests are in European Art and Criticism from late 15th to mid 17th century. However, she focuses on History of Reception of Early Modern Works of Art. Dr. Spagnolo is currently preparing a book on the practice of mocking works of art in early modern Italy and France. Furthermore, she has published on this topic in the Proceedings of International Conferences (2006 and 2008), in the Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes 2011 (2010) and she has given a number of papers at various conferences, such as the RSA in Los Angeles (2009), the AAH at Glasgow (2010), the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florence (2008), the Warburg Institute (2005 and 2010), and has co-organized an International workshop, Bild-Witz, with Nicola Suthor and Gerhard Wolf, at the Kunsthistorisches Institut (2010).

  • Ben Gurion University

    The popular image of Dante as a theologian

    2011-2012: Fall

    Leon Jacobowitz Efron is Visiting Lecturer of Medieval History as Achva College of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel. His dissertation on the religious reception of Dante Alighieri was written at Tel-Aviv University's School for Historical Studies, under the supervision of Dr. Yossef Schwartz (TAU) and Prof. Peter S. Hawkins (Yale). It won Tel-Aviv University's Funkenstein Award for Outstanding and Original Ph.D. Dissertation.
    He is interested in late medieval and early modern secular-vernacular thought, and has a particular interest in questions of authority and specifically in lay subversion of ecclesiastic authority in 14th and 15th century texts and art.
    Presently he is working on a monograph about the popular image of Dante as a theologian at Columbia University's Italian Academy.

  • Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz

    Giuseppe de Ribera and the dissimulation of sight

    2011-2012: Fall

    Dr. Itay Sapir was born in Tel Aviv, Israel, in 1973. He holds an MA in History from Tel Aviv University, and, since 2008, a PhD in Art History and Aesthetics from the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA, University of Amsterdam) and the École des hautes Études en sciences sociales (EHESS), Paris. His doctoral dissertation was titled "Ténèbres sans leçons: the Aesthetics and Epistemology of Roman Tenebrist Painting, 1595-1610"; it will soon be published (in French) by Peter Lang in the "Science, Nature and the Arts" series. Dr. Sapir has published numerous articles on artists such as Caravaggio and Adam Elsheimer.
    Sapir was a doctoral fellow at ASCA, where he taught several Art History and Cultural Analysis courses; he later taught courses at the Liberal Studies Program of NYU in France, and at the History and Art History departments of Tel Aviv University. Since 2009, Sapir is a post-doctoral fellow at the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz, working on a research project about the Port Scenes of Claude Lorrain.

  • Università di Messina

    Passion play and via crucis in northern Italy: History of art and social anthropology

    2011-2012: Spring

    Francesco Faeta is Professor of Cultural and Visual Anthropology at the University of Messina (Italy), where he is Vice-director of the Department of Cognitive Sciences, and Director of the PhD Program Anthropology and Cultural Studies. He is also Director of the School of Visual Ethnography (SEV) at the Istituto Superiore di Fotografia e Comunicazione Integrata (College of Photography and Integrated Communications) in Rome.
    He has been appointed guest speaker at several seminars and lessons; in Italian Universities and abroad (University of Calabria, University of Rome 'La Sapienza', University of Siena, University of Torino, University of Palermo, University of Basilicata, College "Suor Orsola Benincasa" of Naples, University of Salzburg, University of Toulouse, University of Paris " La Sorbonne", École Pratique des Hautes Études, École Française de Rome, University of Valladolid, University of La Curuña, etc.). Dr. Faeta's essays and ethnographic photographs have been published in the most reputable Italian reviews and in some of the most valued foreign reviews, including "Terrain" and "Gradhiva" in France. His essays and works have been translated in French, English, Spanish, German, Rumanian and Hungarian.
    Director of an operative staff of the Research Project "Cultural Heritage" of CNR and, for Franco Angeli, publisher in Milan, of the collection "Imagines. Studi visuali e pratiche della rappresentazione" (Imagines. Visual studies and practices of the representation), he was a member of the National Committee for the Study of the Anthropological Heritage, founded by the Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Cultural Affairs. He is currently a member of AISEA (Italian Association for Ethnological and Anthropological Studies) and holds a board position at SISF (Italian Society for the Study on Photography).
    Dr. Faeta has performed extensive research in the field of anthropology of Europe, focusing on Southern Italy and, in it, especially on Visual Anthropology production, the social and cultural organization of territories and folk- architectures, the ethnological and anthropological museums, and popular religious beliefs and the dynamics of festivals and rituals. He has a particular interest in the relationships between Anthropology and Art History, mainly in the field of popular religion, and is now engaged in the study of the cultural imaginary related with the making of Italian Nation-State; in a wide research project, carried on at an European scale, in the theoretical perspective of an Anthropology of memory, on cemeteries and remembrance techniques in the urban and rural contexts; in the study of the (ancient and contemporary) holy drama of Cerveno (Brescia), in Northern Italy.

  • Università di Padova and Columbia University

    Combined analysis of multimodal brain imaging data for the study and prevention of major depressive disorders in high risk offspring


    Alexander Bodini Research Fellow in Developmental and Adolescent Psychiatry

    Francesca Zanderigo has always enjoyed applying her mathematical skills to define and solve problems related to human health care. As a graduate student at the Department of Information Engineering, University of Padova, Italy, she focused on the quantitative analysis of cerebral hemodynamics in patients with carotid artery stenosis using Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) (Zanderigo et al., IEEE Transaction on Biomedical Engineering 56(5), 2009, 1287-97), and the hypo/ hyperglycemia prevention in diabetics by on-line monitoring and prediction of blood glucose concentration (Sparacino et al., Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice 74, 2006, S160-S163; Sparacino et al., IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering 54(5), 2007, 931- 937; Zanderigo et al., Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology 1(5), 2007, 645-651). As a Research Scientist for the interdisciplinary Division of Molecular Imaging and Neuropathology, Department of Psychiatry and New York State Psychiatric Institute, Columbia University, she implemented mathematical models to analyze Positron Emission Tomography (PET) data in neuroreceptors system investigations. Specifically, Dr. Zanderigo developed a Bayesian approach to reduce the estimates variability in parametric images generation (Zanderigo et al., Nuclear Medicine and Biology 37, 2010, 443-51) and the application of alternative fitting methods to improve the sensitivity in occupancy studies (Zanderigo et al., Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism 30(7), 2010, 1366-72), and collaborated in the assessment of a minimally invasive approach for PET data analysis (Ogden et al., Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism 30(4), 2010, 816-26), the investigation of new radioligands (DeLorenzo et al., Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism 29(7), 2009, 1332-45; Milak et al., Journal of Nuclear Medicine 51(12), 2010, 1892-900), and their use in the study of the serotonin neurotransmitter system (Parsey et al., Biological Psychiatry 68(2), 2010, 170-8). She recently began working on the combined analysis of multimodal brain images (i.e. PET, MRI, Diffusion Tensor Imaging, functional MRI) to provide biomarkers for personalized treatment of Major Depressive Disorders in high risk offspring by predicting and identifying individual factors that may favor certain treatments over others. She is also investigating and developing a novel unified automated approach for PET non-invasive full quantification to promote the use of PET in clinical practice.

  • University of Sussex

    Music in the Italian Renaissance home

    2011-2012: Fall

    Flora Dennis is Lecturer in Art History at the University of Sussex. After completing a doctorate in Musicology at the University of Cambridge (2002), she was a Research Fellow at the AHRC Centre for the Study of the Domestic Interior (2001-6); co-curating the V&A exhibition At Home in Renaissance Italy (2006-7) and co-editing its accompanying book. She has been awarded fellowships by Villa I Tatti, the Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies (2007-8); the UK's Arts and Humanities Research Council (2010-11) and was made an Honorary Fellow of the Research Department at the V&A (2007- 11). She has published on music, sound and interiors in fifteenth and sixteenth- century Italy, and is currently working on a monograph about music and the visual and material culture of the domestic sphere.

  • Università di Roma La Sapienza

    Galileo and the Roman Curia: modern science and Catholic Reformation c. 1610–1700

    2011-2012: Fall

    Federica Favino graduated in Philosophy from the University of Rome 'La Sapienza' and received her PhD in History from the University of Naples. She is currently working as a Research Fellow and Lecturer in History of Science at the Sapienza University of Rome. Dr. Favino's area of expertise is on Giovanni Battista Ciampoli (1589-1643), papal secretary and disciple of Galileo. She is the author of several essays which focus on the circulation of the "new science" in the papal court, the practice of experimental physics in Rome in the 17th century, and science teaching at the University of Rome from the 16th century to the Great Reform of Pope Benedict XIV.

  • Max Planck Institute for the History of Science

    A paper archive of everything written: Ulisse Aldrovandi's Pandechion Epistemonicon (Fall 2011 and Spring 2012)


    Fabian Krämer is a historian interested primarily in the History of Science in early modern Europe. He has been trained as both a historian and literary scholar. Both of these disciplinary backgrounds are present in his current research, which pays special attention to the scholarly practices of reading and writing that were in use across the porous disciplinary boundaries of the "Republic of Letters", the early modern world of learning. Other recent research interests include the history of the case history and the history of the book.
    Fabian Krämer recently finished his PhD dissertation (How Did a Centaur Get to Early Modern London? Observation and Reading in the Study of Nature, ca. 1550-1650), which he wrote under the supervision of Professor Helmut Zedelmaier at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich and Professor Lorraine Daston at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science Berlin. At the latter institution, his dissertation project was part of a research project on The History of Scientific Observation. He also received grants for doctoral research at Herzog August Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel and at Forschungsbibliothek Gotha. Furthermore, the Fazit and the Gerda Henkel Foundations supported his dissertation project.
    His research contributions to date correspond to the fields of specialization mentioned above. Fabian Krämer's publications primarily deal with matters of early modern history of science and especially the "how" and "why" of description and depiction of "natural particulars" in early modern medicine and natural history. His most recently published article examines the rich biography of one of the woodcuts commissioned by the eminent Bolognese natural historian Ulisse Aldrovandi (1522-1605) for his huge encyclopedia of natural history, the depiction of a curious, two-legged centaur.

  • St. Mary's College of Maryland

    Kabbalistic notions of time in Italian Renaissance thought

    2011-2012: Spring

    Alexander Bodini Research Fellow in Culture and Religion

    Brian Ogren is a scholar of religion with a concentration on Jewish thought in the Italian Renaissance. He was raised in California, was educated in the United States and in Israel, and has spent extensive periods of time studying in Europe. Similar to his own personal trajectories between worlds, his intellectual concentration has been upon the flow and reception of ideas among diverse intellectual communities. He has examined issues of change and continuity in the thought of learned Jews and Christians, including their modes of argumentation as a means of shaping identity. He is attracted to themes of center and margin, interior and exterior, and differing notions of time, space, and self. As a fellow at the Italian Academy, Brian will be exploring kabbalistic concepts of cyclical time in Italian Renaissance thought. This is an ongoing project that examines the construction of history, as well as the usage of eschatology, for polemical purposes related to differing ideas of "messianism."

  • Università di Bologna

    The relationship between democracy and inequality in developed and stable economies

    2011-2012: Spring

    Alexander Bodini Research Fellow in Global Development and Finance

    Anna Soci studied in Bologna (I) and Princeton (USA). She is currently Full Professor of Economics at the University of Bologna, life-member of Clare Hall in Cambridge (UK), Visitor at the Land Economy Department, University of Cambridge (UK) and member of the Academy Advisory Board of the Network for European Studies, University of Helsinki. Responsible of several international and national research projects, she has just finished coordinating the project TERA financed by the European Union in the 6FP. Dr. Soci's main research topics have been through time, social accounting frameworks, new-economic geography, foreign direct investment, and macroeconomic theory. Her research work was published in refereed international and national journals and presented in international and national seminars and conferences. Her personal web page is http://www2.dse.unibo.it/dsa/profile.php?id=81

  • Institut Jean Nicod


    The viewer as simulated artist

    2011-2012: Spring

    Alessandro Pignocchi studied Biology and Cognitive Science. He received a PhD in philosophy of art and cognitive science, directed by Roberto Casati, at the Institut Jean Nicod in Paris. His thesis supported the proposal that when perceiving a drawing we automatically simulate some aspects of the gesture of the draftsman and that this "motor perception" is a first step of the recovery of the draftsman's intentions. Furthermore, he discussed the consequence of the motor perception hypothesis for the learning of drawing and for the appreciation of drawings and pictures. Dr. Pignocchi recently published a book in which he claims that when perceiving an artwork we automatically and in part unconsciously attribute intentions to the artist, and that the details of the intentional process that we reconstruct determine all our experience of the artwork, including its perception. He is currently working on a second book in which he uses this intentional model to analyse a set of artworks, including movies, novels, comics and paintings.