June 2014


Masterclass with Marilyn Horne

  • Monday, 2 June 2014 - 5:00pm
Villa Aurelia

World renowned American mezzo-soprano opera singer Marilyn Horne will lead a masterclass in operatic repertoire for The American University of Rome Summer Vocal Institute. The kick-off event is organized in collaboration with the American Academy in Rome and will be open to attendees of the Vocal Institute. For information on the Vocal Institute and how to apply, please contact Timothy Martin, Program Director at


Rome Reunion 2014

  • Tuesday, 3 June 2014 - 9:00am to Saturday, 7 June 2014 - 9:00pm
American Academy in Rome

The deadline for pre-registration has passed. If you would like to attend the Rome Reunion, please write to

In Fall of 1914, the newly formed American Academy in Rome opened its doors in a new building, designed by architects McKim, Mead & White, on the Janiculum Hill. The event marked in stone the merger of the School of Classical Studies and the American Academy in Rome, which had taken place 3 years earlier. With a building in common, including a magnificent new library, the joined schools ushered in a new beginning, uniting the best of artistic and humanistic endeavour under one roof.

2014 thus marks the 100th anniversary not only of the buildings - the McKim, Mead & White Building and the Arthur and Janet C. Ross Library - but also of the radical experiment in integrating the arts and humanities that is the American Academy in Rome.

To celebrate this centennial, the American Academy invites Fellows, Affiliated Fellows and Residents of every class to gather in Rome for a Reunion. Scheduled to coincide with the annual Trustees’ week, June 3-6, 2014, the Reunion will include a special exhibition, tours, symposia, a wonderful and relaxed opportunity to get to know the Academy’s new president, Mark Robbins, FAAR’97, and, above all, a chance for communities past and present to reconnect with each other, with Rome and with the Academy. Families and friends of past community members are also most welcome.

Highlights for the week will include:

- Special tours for alumni, lead by Academy staff and Advisors
- A symposium, featuring Simon During, Tim Parks, Jed Perl and Taiye Selasi on the future of arts and humanities in the 21st century
- A special exhibition on the McKim, Mead, & White Building in the context of early 20th century Rome
- A Festival with readings and open studio visits by current fellows
- The week will kick-off with the annual fundraising event of the McKim Medal Gala honoring Zaha Hadid. The event raises money to support the Italian Affiliated Fellows Program.
- Lots of time to reconnect with the Academy and your fellowship year

The 2014 Rome Reunion will mark the moment when the Academy became the institution we know and love today: a place that supports artists, writers, and scholars living together and working innovatively in a dynamic, international community. Come back and rejoin the community!

Where can I stay for the Reunion?
While we’d love to house everyone at the Academy, the buildings will be filled with the current crop of fellows, residents and visitors. But we’ve shopped around for the best deals in hotels, both near to the AAR and closer to the center. A list of hotels and prices can be found below, with plenty of choices from B and B’s close by the Academy to luxury hotels in the center.

Can I bring my family?
Families are most welcome. Kids will be welcome at all events except the symposium and conversation with Mark Robbins/Christopher Celenza. Special events for kids will take place during the Festival.


2014 McKim Medal Gala

  • Tuesday, 3 June 2014 - 7:30pm
Villa Aurelia

The American Academy in Rome honors Zaha Hadid

Honorary Dinner Chairman
Mercedes T. Bass

Ginevra Elkann
Valentina Moncada di Paternò

Vice Chairman
Daniel G. Cohen

Founding Chairman
Verdella Caracciolo de Benedictis

Purchase Tickets

The McKim Medal was established by the Trustees of the American Academy in Rome to honor an individual whose work internationally -- most particularly in Italy and in the United States -- has contributed significantly to the arts and humanities, and whose life exemplifies creative and intellectual exchange across the arts, scholarship, language, and culture. The Medal is awarded annually at a gala in Rome.

The net proceeds from the event allow Italian artists to join the Academy community as fellows, and also support an exchange program in the humanities with the Scuola Normale di Pisa. Over 50 Italian fellowships have been awarded since the first McKim Medal Gala in 2005 and are a vital aspect of the Academy’s mission: to support innovative artists, writers, and scholars living and working together in a dynamic international community.

The Medal, named for Charles Follen McKim (1847-1909), noted architect who established the Academy in 1894, was designed by Cy Twombly.

For information please contact Inga Clausing at +39 06-5846-474, or write to

McKim Medal Laureates are:
2013 Bernardo Bertolucci, director and screenwriter
2012 Riccardo Muti, conductor and music director
2011 Luigi Ontani, artist
2010 Miuccia Prada, fashion designer
2009 Ennio Morricone, composer and music conductor
2008 Franco Zeffirelli, producer and director
2007 Umberto Eco, writer
2006 Cy Twombly, artist
2005 Renzo Piano, architect

Conversations That Matter

The Future of the Arts and Humanitites

  • Wednesday, 4 June 2014 - 4:00pm
McKim, Mead & White Building Cortile

Are the humanities in crisis, administered out of existence in places, threatening to disappear from university life? Or has there been too much recent doomsaying and not enough critical thought as to how to maintain them in a fast-changing world? Is the art world facing challenges of perception, as market forces gain prominence, with "branding" threatening to crowd out genuine creativity? How does individual identity inflect creative work of all sorts? Where are the arts and humanities now? Where are they going?

These and other questions will be foregrounded in a Conversation that Matters moderated by AAR Director Christopher S. Celenza, FAAR,'94, with panelists Simon During, Tim Parks, Jed Perl and Kimberly Bowes, FAAR'06, Andrew W. Mellon Professor-in-Charge of the School of Classical Studies.

To participate, please rsvp to

Open Studios

Fellows' Open Studios and Reading

  • Thursday, 5 June 2014 - 6:00pm to 9:00pm
McKim, Mead & White Building

Open Studios in the McKim, Mead & White building offer the public an opportunity to see the studios of the current Rome Prize Fellows in the fields of Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Design, Historic Preservation and Conservation, and Visual Arts and attend a reading by the two Rome Prize Fellows in Literature.

The reading, given by Peter Bognanni and Peter Streckfus, will take place at 8pm in the Lecture Room. The reading can be watched at:

Participants in the Open Studios are: Thomas Kelley and Catie Newell in Architecture; Nicholas de Monchaux and Catherine Wagner in Design; Thomas Leslie, Thompson Mayes and Max Page in Historic Preservation and Conservation; Bradley Cantrell and Elizabeth Fain LaBombard in Landscape Architecture; Anna Betbeze, Hamlett Dobbins, Dan Hurlin and Reynold Reynolds in Visual Arts.

Also participating in the Open Studios are Italian Affiliated Fellows in the Arts Vittorio Montalti, Giuseppe Stampone and Giorgio Vasta, and Dutch Affiliated Fellow Petra Noordkamp.

The event is in part supported by the Syde Hurdus Foundation.


Show Trials of the Fourteenth Century/Processi farsa nel XIV secolo

  • Monday, 16 June 2014 - 2:30pm to 7:00pm
AAR Lecture Room

The first quarter of the fourteenth century saw an explosion of spectacular trials. The Knights Templar were not the only ones to find themselves suddenly and alarmingly in the dock: bishops were arrested, lay leaders were summoned, pious women were cross-examined, and even poor shepherds were required to give depositions before ecclesiastical tribunals. Many of these church processes have a strong ideological and political character to them: Were they simply “show trials” and “kangaroo courts”? This one-day conference presents a series of case studies with the aim of untangling the peculiar intersection of law, theology, and politics from the time of the Roman Pope Boniface VIII to Benedict XII in Avignon.

Papers will be given in Italian and English.

Contact: Patrick Nold,


Identity Problems in Early Italy II: A Workshop on Methodology

  • Wednesday, 18 June 2014 - 9:00am to 5:30pm
AAR Lecture Room

How do we know what we know about Italy’s pre-Roman peoples? In studies of the population groups of Italy in the first millennium BC, the lacunose and contradictory historical, linguistic and archaeological sources present serious problems. While they all indicate that Italy was fragmented into numerous geographically circumscribed population groups at the time of the Roman conquest, the devil is in the details: the historically named peoples, language groups, and archaeological cultures rarely map neatly onto each other, nor do they permit straightforward reconstructions of these groups’ formation and development. Without formal rules for handling the evidence, each of us must gauge independently what data are sufficient to make a convincing argument. In these studies it has been standard practice for the specialists of these various sets of sources (literary, epigraphic, archaeological) to combine multiple categories of evidence to produce a coherent discourse. To do this they are often obliged to use paradigms from other scientific categories as if they were indisputable ontological concepts. This can result in some odd hybrid terms. After all, what is really meant by  "Paleo-Veneti", "Villanovans", "Golasecchians", "etruscophone", "oscophone", "latenian sword", "Samnite belt", or "Romulean walls"?

The purpose of this workshop, the second of its kind, is to explore the methods employed in the study of Italy’s pre-Roman groups. The focus here is on practice, not results. Which types of evidence about ancient identity carry more weight? How can different kinds of evidence be combined in rigorous and effective ways? Can new methods be brought to bear on old data? When must we admit that there are some questions the intractable evidence is not equipped to answer? By bringing specialists in all three categories of evidence together, we hope that in a spirit of cooperation we may share our own perspectives on the challenging task of understanding the peoples of early Italy.

Contact: Emma Blake, University of Arizona; Stéphane Bourdin, École Française de Rome; Christopher Smith, British School at Rome.