Welcome to the first edition of the digital BSR News

We are delighted to present the new digital platform for the BSR News . In it you will find stories covering the range of our activities, which we hope give you a snapshot of what has been happening at the BSR since January. We hope you will enjoy keeping up with our work, our successes and our people. Please do send it on to anyone who might be interested - it will also be available on our website. Please email Natalie Arrowsmith to let us know if you have any comments or suggestions.

Christopher Smith

A singular approach to Rome
There-s no place like dome
This year's Rome Prize-winner in Architecture, Adam Nathaniel Furman, has filled his residency with projects, collaborations and awards. His time at the BSR began auspiciously - coinciding with his winning a 2014 Blueprint Design Award for a project he created during his period as one of the Design Museum's 2013 Designers in Residence - and he has book-ended it with his recent nomination as a finalist for this year's Cramum Art Prize for young artists working in Italy. Whilst at the BSR, Adam and Aristotle Kallis (Balsdon Fellow 2014-15) have contributed several articles to the RIBA Journal, both jointly and separately. As Adam's residency came to a close last month, ArchDaily produced a feature on his BSR project, and you can read more about it on his blog, The Roman Singularity.

In February, we were pleased to host an evening at the British Academy, where a packed room was treated to the annual Giles Worsley Rome Fellowship Event . In addition to an engaging talk by architect N?all McLaughlin, Ricardo Agarez , this year's Giles Worsley Travel Fellow, reported on his BSR project on post-war Roman housing.

And, in case you missed it, the architecture of the BSR itself was featured in Country Life in October of last year.
The BSR and the museum world
Susan Walker
From John Marshall - official purveyor of antiquities to the Metropolitan Museum of New York from 1905 to 1928, and actively involved with the BSR throughout that time - to our present-day alumni, the BSR has a long-standing association with the museum world.

Nicholas Cullinan (Rome Scholar 2004-5), who returned to the BSR last year to give a talk on his blockbuster Matisse exhibition (which showed at Tate and the Museum of Modern Art, New York), this spring joined the National Portrait Gallery as its new Director. Of his time at the BSR, he says 'The BSR really was transformative for me - for me it integrated my art historical training with observing and understanding artists working in the studio and wider spheres of research and debate'.

As you may have heard in the media, Penelope Curtis, current member of the Faculty of the Fine Arts and Balsdon Fellow 2000-1, will be moving from her current post as Director of Tate Britain to become Director of the  Calouste Gulbenkian Museum in Lisbon in the autumn, and we wish her well in her new role.

Our interview with Susan Walker, pictured above (Council and FAHL member, and Chair of Publications; Hugh Last Fellow 2012-13; Balsdon Fellow 2006-7), former Sackler Keeper of Antiquities at the Ashmolean Museum, and her successor, Paul Roberts (Rivoira Scholar 1989-90), gives us fascinating details about how their professional lives have crossed, and why the BSR has played an important role throughout their careers.

Members' events
Bust of Napoleon
To celebrate the British Museum's exhibition on Napoleon , the BSR hosted two events. On 9 March, a full audience of Members and the public heard John A. Davis give a talk at the British Academy entitled 'Liberator, peacemaker or oppressor? Napoleon and Italy'. His lecture richly illustrated how Napoleon's image was constructed, deployed and received in Italy - as well as in France - from the very start of the then-General's First Italian Campaign of 1796-7, a period that saw the production of no less than 37 portraits of Napoleon.

Two interesting BSR links emerged on the night: the speaker's daughter, Lucy Davis, was Rome Fellow at the BSR in 2007-8 and is now Curator of Old Master Pictures at the Wallace Collection; and Faculty of the Fine Arts member Hugh Petter (Rome Scholar in Architecture 1990-92) is the descendant of one of Napoleon's guards on St Helena.

The following morning, Members visited the British Museum for a private tour of Bonaparte and the British: Prints and Propaganda in the Age of Napoleon led by curator Sheila O'Connell. Those fortunate to attend both events delighted in the opportunity to contrast the more dignified images of Napoleon used in Italy and France with the British ones depicting him as 'Little Boney' or 'The Devil's Darling'.

If you would like to discuss membership or other ways of supporting the BSR, please
contact Elizabeth Rabineau.
Domus Aurea
From 19 to 22 March, members of the Ashby Society visited the BSR for their annual study trip. In addition to engaging with the award-holders and staff and visiting March Mostra, they enjoyed guided visits on the theme 'Houses of power, pleasure and grandeur'. Highlights included recently re-opened sites, such as the Houses of Augustus and Livia, the Stadium of Domitian and the Domus Aurea (pictured here). 
Moving forward several centuries, they also took in the Palazzo Altemps and the Palazzo Doria Pamphilj, where they were graciously hosted by Prince Jonathan Doria Pamphilj. The group gathered on the final evening for a dinner hosted by Ashby Society and Council member Loyd Grossman at the Circolo della Caccia, and rounded off the trip with a farewell brunch at the Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna.

For details on joining the Ashby Society, please contact Elizabeth Rabineau.
Treatment for Six Characters
Edward Simpson
Donors dinner and film screening of
Treatment for Six Characters

In February, Ashby Society members and Benefactors enjoyed a dinner in London to thank them for their generous support of the BSR. The evening began with a screening of Treatment for Six Characters, a film begun by Anne-Marie Creamer during her time as Derek Hill Foundation Scholar at the BSR in 2012-13 (a still from the film is pictured above).

The artist's introductory talk put into context the work's relation to Pirandello's masterpiece Six Characters in Search of an Author. It was rewarding to hear how much her work benefited from, and was shaped by, her interactions whilst at the BSR.
Private view at Sir John Cass Faculty of Art, Architecture and Design

In January, donors to Architecture at the BSR and other architecture enthusiasts were treated to a private view of former Rome Prize-winner Edward Simpson's (pictured above) exhibition
Five Rome Housing Projects at the Cass Gallery at London Metropolitan University.

Andrea Medjesi-Jones (Abbey Fellow in Painting 2013-14) was concurrently exhibiting her solo show  The Making of Nedd Ludd in the same space. That, and the fact that those present included several of their BSR cohort, made the event both a celebration of Edward's architectural research and something of a reunion.

Ports and pyramids
Amara West
Utica, Tunisia
BSR archaeologists Sophie Hay and Stephen Kay returned for another season's geophysical surveying in Sudan this spring. The prize-winning image of the geophysics survey in progress (above) was taken by Sophie in the 2014 season at Amara West at the exact point where, this year, Neal Spencer and his team from the British Museum excavated a burial chamber. The door jamb found in the shaft of this pyramid tomb may indicate that one of the occupants was a man called Paser, a prominent official in Upper Nubia under Ramses III.
The British Museum's blog on the excavations at Amara West is an engaging read, full of detail and images on this ongoing project of which we are proud to be a part.

Romping around the Mediterranean

Our flagship archaeological project, the Portus Project, continues to attract attention in the media, whether it be in the recent feature in the popular magazine Archaeology or through the Portus MOOC.

But Portus, the Imperial port of Rome, did not stand in isolation. The BSR is now a partner in RoMP (Rome's Mediterranean Ports project), a five-year project funded by the European Research Council which aims to broaden the study of port sites that linked Rome to her provinces in the Roman Imperial period.

Fine Arts round-up
Paul James Gomes
Eddie Peake
Rome, Venice, Jerusalem

We were delighted to host an artist's talk by Nathan Coley in February, made possible through the kind support of the Craignish Trust. Nathan works across a range of media to explore discrepancies existing within the built world of architecture and the city as actually experienced.

Wouter Vanstiphout, co-curator of the British pavilion at the Venice architecture biennale in 2014, discussed the relationship between architecture, creativity and politics in his lecture 'A Clockwork Jerusalem', as part of our Meeting Architecture: Architecture and the Creative Process programme.

Huge congratulations go to Faculty of the Fine Arts member Helen Sear (Rome Awardee Fine Arts 1992-3), who is representing Wales at the Venice Biennale this year , opening 9 May.

Those who could not make it to Rome for the March Mostra can get closer to the exhibition by virtually meeting the participating award-holders in the Meet the Artists series on our blog.

From Rome to Roman Remains

So far in 2015, BSR residents have been spoilt for choice for exhibitions in Rome involving BSR artists past and present. Rowena Harris (Sainsbury Scholar in Painting and Sculpture 2014-15) and alumnus Eddie Peake (Abbey Scholar in Painting 2008-9) are showing in
Conversation Piece | Part 1 until June at the newly-renovated Fondazione Memmo, where Daniel Sinsel (Abbey Fellow in Painting 2014-15) will be giving a TEDxRoma talk on 29 April. Eddie's solo show a t Galleria Lorcan O'Neill has attracted attention in the international press .

Daniele Genadry (Abbey Scholar in Painting 2013-14) and Ursula Burke (Arts Council of Northern Ireland Fellow 2013-14) both returned to Rome to take part in group shows last month, and Alison Crawshaw (Rome Scholar in Architecture 2010-11) is exhibiting at MAXXI until 3 May.

In the UK, six BSR alumni from 2013-14 have reunited for the group show Roman Remains , which runs until 17 May at Transition Gallery in London. One year after their BSR residencies, Ursula Burke, Archie Franks (Sainsbury Scholar in Painting and Sculpture ), Daniele Genadry , Mason Kimber (National Art School, Sydney, Resident in Drawing), Annika Koops  (Australia Council Resident) and Cathy Lomax  (Abbey Fellow in Painting) will exhibit work that considers how their time in Rome has influenced their individual practices.

We are keen to hear from our former award-holders. Please email our Communications Manager Natalie Arrowsmith to let us know what you are doing.

Conferences and catalogues
Adriatic Connections
EAGLE Project

Our first conference of 2015 was the major centrepiece of the British Academy-funded 'Adriatic Connections' programme. Organised by BSR-BSA Adriatic Connections Fellow Magdalena Skoblar, the conference brought together specialists from Austria, Croatia, France, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands and the UK to discuss the Adriatic from 600 to 1453 - and saw delegates making a trip to Santa Maria Antiqua. The proceedings will be published by CUP.

Many of the conference participants remained at the BSR until the following week, when some of the finest medievalists from across Europe gathered to celebrate the work of Chris Wickham - Professor of Medieval History at Oxford, former Council member and long-time friend of the BSR - who has recently published a book on medieval Rome.

EAGLE Project and new Library catalogue

We are delighted to announce that the BSR Library's new online catalogue, SEARCH, went live on 1 January 2015. It was produced using the open-source software KOHA, and is the product of a joint development project with the libraries of the Belgian and Danish Academies in Rome.

Our Digital Collections website continues to grow, with 15,000 works currently available. Already added to the website this year are two significant collections: the drawings of Italy made by James Hakewill during his Grand Tour of 1816-18, and the very important John Henry Parker collection of early photographs of monuments and archaeological sites in Rome.

The EAGLE Project (Europeana network of Ancient Greek and Latin Epigraphy) is going from strength to strength. The BSR is contributing significant metadata and images from its Photographic Archive, coordinated by BSR Archivist Alessandra Giovenco and our EAGLE consultant Francesca Bigi, both of whom contributed to the proceedings of the first international EAGLE conference, held in Paris in September 2014.

Out and about
Palazzo Altemps
A tour of Spanish Rome
Spoils of history? Negotiating the past in the arts of pre-modern Rome

BSR award-holders and residents have always been generous when it comes to sharing their expertise with other members of the BSR community, whether it be through musings over a coffee in the cortile, or a lively discussion over dinner.

This term Assistant Director Stefania Gerevini provided a more structured forum for such interactions in a series of on-site seminars on the theme 'Spoils of history? Negotiating the past in the arts of pre-modern Rome' held across Rome in February and March.

These seminars allowed BSR research staff and award-holders to look together at the arts of pre-modern Rome to explore issues of historicity, temporality and artistic identity.

A tour of Spanish Rome

In February we celebrated the launch of The Spanish Presence in Sixteenth-Century Italy, edited by former award-holders Piers Baker-Bates (Rome Scholar 2002-3) and Miles Pattenden (Rome Scholar 2006-7), with contributions by many other BSR alumni. As part of the celebrations, Piers kindly took staff and award-holders on a tour of 'Spanish Rome'. Rome Awardee Giorgio Lizzul's blog post gives a flavour of the day.

On a personal note
Stefania Gerevini
New Assistant Director

As you will probably already know Stefania Gerevini has taken up the position of Assistant Director at the BSR, after two years' lecturing at the Courtauld. Her current research focuses on issues of artistic interchange, conflict and cultural identity in the medieval Mediterranean, particularly in Genoa, Venice and Byzantium; and on the conceptualisations and artistic applications of light and transparency in medieval art. When she is not at her desk, Stefania is a keen swing-dancer!

Peppino Parente retires

On 19 December we said goodbye to Giuseppe (Peppino) Parente, who has retired after 40 years working as Cook at the BSR.

Peppino was the guest of honour at this year's Christmas lunch, and graciously agreed to continue BSR tradition by presiding over the tombola for one last time. Auguri Peppino!

BSR welcomes new Council and Faculty members

We are pleased to announce that the following have joined our Council and Faculties in 2015, and we look forward to working with them.

New to the Faculty of the Fine Arts are: Sacha Craddock (critic and curator), Tim Marlow (Director of Artistic Programmes at the Royal Academy of Arts), and Thomas J. Price (Arts Council England Helen Chadwick Fellow 2009-10).

Matthew Reynolds (Professor of English and Comparative Criticism at the University of Oxford) joins the Faculty of Archaeology, History and Letters; and David Mattingly (Professor of Roman Archaeology at the University of Leicester) joins Council and has taken on the role of Chair of Archaeological Fieldwork on the Faculty of Archaeology, History and Letters.

You may have missed...

Luca Albanese started working as Cook at the BSR just before Christmas. Taking the BSR's interdisciplinary approach to heart, Luca has decided to get artistic with his cooking. Here are some images from his dinner on the theme of La ... Continue reading ? ...?
Tom Brigden was Giles Worsley Travel Fellow at the BSR in 2012. Here he tells us about his time at the BSR, his work as an architect at a leading international architectural practice specialising in conservation, and what J.M.W. Turner has ... Continue reading ? ...?

This autumn the Estorick Collection of Modern Italian Art held an exhibition bringing together roman antiquities and modern art. Marbles, mosaics and wall paintings from the archaeological site of Ostia Antica were juxtaposed with the work of two modern Italian ... Continue reading ? ...?

Image acknowledgements 

Christopher Smith: Antonio Palmieri. Adam Nathaniel Furman,  There's no place like dome, 2014. Susan Walker: Rebecca Zamora, Getty Research Center.  Bust of Napoleon from the exhibition  Bonaparte and the British: Prints and Propaganda in the Age of Napoleon  at the British Museum: Kirsten Amor. Ashby Society and BSR residents inside the Domus Aurea: Giorgio Lizzul. Anne-Marie Creamer, video still from  Treatment for Six Characters , High Definition video, 30 mins duration. Edward Simpson: Kirsten Amor. Geophysics research at Amara West, Sudan, 2014: Sophie Hay. View across the excavations of an  insula block in Utica, Tunisia: Sophie Hay. Paul James Gomes (Creative Scotland  document24  Fellow 2014-15) ? Paolo Landriscina photographer. Eddie Peake,  A Historical Masturbators , 2015, installation view Galleria Lorcan O'Neill, Roma: Courtesy Galleria Lorcan O'Neill. T he port of Classe near Ravenna, sixth-century mosaic in the basilica of Sant'Apollinare Nuovo in Ravenna: akg-images/Cameraphoto. P air of funerary altars at Civitella San Paolo, from the Ward-Perkins Collection, South Etruria Series in the BSR Photographic Archive: John Bryan Ward-Perkins. Christopher Smith discusses The Galatian Suicide at Palazzo Altemps: Guido Petruccioli. Bramante's Tempietto in the courtyard of the Chiesa San Pietro in Montorio: Giorgio Lizzul. Stefania Gerevini: Antonio Palmieri. Giuseppe Parente: Sophie Hay. The British School at Rome: Sophie Hay.