Announcing the 2023–24 Rome Prize Winners and Italian Fellows

The American Academy in Rome announced today the winners of the 2023–24 Rome Prize and Italian Fellowships. These highly competitive fellowships support advanced independent work and research in the arts and humanities. This year, the Rome Prize—the gift of “time and space to think and work”—was awarded to 36 American artists and scholars, who will each receive a stipend, workspace, and room and board at the Academy’s eleven-acre campus on the Janiculum Hill in Rome, starting in September 2023.

“This class of Rome Prize winners once again includes some of America’s most gifted scholars and artists,” said Mark Robbins, President and CEO. “Their fellowship experience, living and working in a multidisciplinary community in Rome, has an enduring impact individually and on the wider intellectual and cultural sphere.”

Rome Prize winners are selected annually by independent juries of distinguished artists and scholars through a highly competitive national competition. The eleven disciplines supported by the Academy are: ancient studies, architecture, design, historic preservation and conservation, landscape architecture, literature, medieval studies, modern Italian studies, music composition, Renaissance and early modern studies, and visual arts.

This year’s competition received 988 submissions from applicants in 44 states, Washington, DC, Puerto Rico, and 4 different countries. The acceptance rate was 3.6 percent. This group of Rome Prize winners is among the most diverse in the Academy’s history: approximately 50 percent identify as persons of color, representing a new high for this demographic. Eleven percent were born outside the United States. The incoming class ranges from 28 to 68 years old, with an average age of 41. This year AAR awarded the inaugural Tsao Family Rome Prize, which supports humanities research in the history of ideas and cultural exchange between the East and West.

The Academy also announced three Italian Fellowships, through which Italian artists and scholars join the AAR community and pursue their own projects in a collaborative environment with their American counterparts. The Italian Fellows are also selected through a national jury process. AAR additionally announced the winner of the Terra Foundation Affiliated Fellowship for a Chicago-Based Visual Artist.

The Rome Prize and Italian Fellowship winners will be presented in person during the annual Arthur and Janet C. Ross Rome Prize Ceremony, taking place in the Great Hall at Cooper Union in New York on Monday, April 24 at 6:30pm. The ceremony will also feature a conversation between the acclaimed artist Carrie Mae Weems (2006 Fellow) and AAR President Mark Robbins (1997 Fellow).

Meet the Winners


A full list of the 2023–24 Rome Prize winners and Italian Fellows is below.

Ancient Studies

Andrew Heiskell Rome Prize
Kate Meng Brassel
Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of Classical Studies, University of Pennsylvania
Autopsy of a Satirist: Book and Body in the Satires of Persius

Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Rome Prize
Mary C. Danisi
PhD Candidate, Department of Classics, Cornell University
Rovings: Wool and the Ancient Ecology of a Cosmic Medium

Arthur Ross Rome Prize
Christopher Erdman
PhD Candidate, Department of Classics, University of California, Santa Barbara
Voting Culture and Political Theater in Late Republican Lawmaking

Emeline Hill Richardson/Jesse Howard, Jr. Rome Prize
Mary-Evelyn Farrior
PhD Candidate, Department of Classical Studies, Columbia University
Inscribing Community: Mapping Greek Inscriptions in Imperial Rome

Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Rome Prize
Ryan Haecker
Research Fellow, William Temple Foundation, England; Course Tutor, London Jesuit Centre
Theology of Logic in Origen of Alexandria


Arnold W. Brunner/Frances Barker Tracy/Katherine Edwards Gordon Rome Prize
César A. Lopez
Assistant Professor, School of Architecture and Planning, University of New Mexico
Citizenry Actions

Lily Auchincloss Rome Prize
Ajay Manthripragada
Design Critic, Department of Architecture, Harvard Graduate School of Design
Imbrex and Tegula


Rolland Rome Prize
David Weeks
Designer, Brooklyn
Movable Beasts

Cynthia Hazen Polsky and Leon Polsky Rome Prize
Elizabeth Whelan
Principal, Elizabeth Whelan Design, Brooklin, Maine
Silk in the Alchemy of History

Historic Preservation and Conservation

Adele Chatfield-Taylor Rome Prize
Aaron Cayer
Assistant Professor, Department of Architecture, University of New Mexico
Building Legitimacy: Designing, Disseminating, and Preserving a New Religion

Suzanne Deal Booth Rome Prize
Emily B. Frank
Objects Conservator and PhD Candidate, Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, New York University
Object Agency and Intervention in Roman Art 

Landscape Architecture

Garden Club of America/Prince Charitable Trusts Rome Prize
Miranda E. Mote
Visiting Assistant Professor, School of Architecture, Pratt Institute; Lecturer, Program in Architecture, College of Arts and Sciences, University of Pennsylvania
Botanography and Botanic Gardens: The Italian Art of Nature Printing and Its Influence on Early American Gardens and Botanical Language

Gilmore D. Clarke and Michael Rapuano/Kate Lancaster Brewster Rome Prize
Lauren Stimson
Partner, STIMSON, Princeton, Massachusetts
Seeing Rural: Embracing Art, Craft, and Slowness in the Italian Landscape


John Guare Writers Fund Rome Prize, a Gift of Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman
Elif Batuman
Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of English, Barnard College, Columbia University

Joseph Brodsky Rome Prize, a Gift of the Drue Heinz Trust
Erica Hunt
Bannerman Visiting Associate Professor of the Practice, Department of Literary Arts, Brown University
The Mood Librarian Tells Stories

Joseph Brodsky Rome Prize, a Gift of the Drue Heinz Trust
Katie Kitamura
Clinical Professor, Creative Writing Program, New York University

Rome Prize in Literature
Shruti Swamy
Writer, San Francisco
Margret and Vishnu: Stories

Medieval Studies

Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Rome Prize
Christopher Bonura
Member, School of Historical Studies, Institute for Advanced Studies
The Apocalypse of Pseudo-Methodius: Empire, Eschatology, and Political Theology from Late Antique Mesopotamia to the Global Imagination

Paul Mellon Rome Prize
Dov Honick
PhD Candidate, Medieval Institute, University of Notre Dame
Beyond the Talmud: Revisiting Christian Anti-Jewish Polemic Sources in the Twelfth Century

Modern Italian Studies

Rome Prize in Modern Italian Studies
Jessica L. Harris
Assistant Professor, Department of History, St. John’s University
Black America and Italy: African American Women in Post-Fascist Italian Culture

Millicent Mercer Johnsen/National Endowment for the Humanities Rome Prize
Erica Moretti
Assistant Professor, Department of Modern Languages and Cultures, Fashion Institute of Technology, State University of New York
Across the Colonial Sea: Family Reunification, Vatican Humanitarianism, and the End of Empire (1943–1950)

Samuel H. Kress Foundation/Donald and Maria Cox Rome Prize
Sara L. Petrilli-Jones
PhD Candidate, Yale University and Scuola Normale Superiore
Drafting the Canon: Legal Histories of Art in Florence and Rome, 1600–1800

Musical Composition

Samuel Barber Rome Prize
Baldwin Giang
PhD Candidate in Music Composition, University of Chicago
Transnational Queerness: Three Compositions Reflecting on City Life, Queerness, and Romance

Frederic A. Juilliard/Walter Damrosch Rome Prize
Kate Soper
Composer, Northampton, Massachusetts; Iva Dee Hiatt Professor of Music, Smith College; Codirector, Wet Ink Ensemble
Orchestra Orpheus Opus Onus

Rome Prize in Musical Composition
Anthony Vine
Composer in Residence, Filomen M. D’Agostino Greenberg Music School
Little Clay Vases

Renaissance and Early Modern Studies

Samuel H. Kress Foundation/Marian and Andrew Heiskell Pre-Doctoral Rome Prize
Gabriella L. Johnson
PhD Candidate, Department of Art History, University of Delaware
Galatea’s Realm: The Art of Coral, Shells, and Marine Fossils in Early Modern Sicily, Naples, and the Maltese Islands

Anthony M. Clark Rome Prize
Nhung Tuyet Tran
Associate Professor, Department of History, University of Toronto
Cosmopolitanism, Trans-Imperial Subjects, and the Vietnamese Confession Crisis in the Making of the Early Modern Global Church, 1660–1800

National Endowment for the Humanities Rome Prize
Anne L. Williams
Assistant Professor, Department of Art History, University of Hong Kong
Imago humilis: Humor, Irony, and Rhetoric in Art and Devotion

Visual Arts

Carla Fendi Rome Prize
Kamrooz Aram
Artist, Brooklyn
Renegotiating Ornament

Philip Guston Rome Prize
Nao Bustamante
Professor of Art, Roski School of Art and Design, University of Southern California

Jules Guerin Rome Prize
Mike Cloud
Associate Professor, Department of Art, Theory, and Practice, Northwestern University
Holistic Abstraction

Nancy B. Negley Rome Prize
Zachary Fabri
Artist, Brooklyn

Nancy B. Negley Rome Prize
Jeanine Oleson
Associate Professor, Department of Art and Design, Rutgers University
Untitled, Work-in-progress

Philip Guston Rome Prize
Estefania Puerta Grisales
Artist, Burlington, Vermont
Embodied Excess: Feeling the Ruins

Abigail Cohen Rome Prize
Dread Scott
Faculty, MFA Fine Arts Department, School of Visual Arts
Temporal Shifting

Tsao Family Rome Prize

John Delury
Professor of Chinese Studies, Yonsei University
Thinking through Tianxia in Rome

Terra Foundation Affiliated Fellow for a Chicago-Based Artist

Lan Tuazon
Associate Professor, Department of Sculpture, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Future Fossils: Ever Given

Italian Fellows

Franco Zeffirelli Italian Fellow
Nicola Barbagli
Scholar, Florence
Domitian as Pharaoh: The Hieroglyphic Inscriptions of the Pamphilj Obelisk

Fondazione Sviluppo e Crescita CRT Italian Fellow in Visual Arts
Fatma Bucak
Artist, Turin
We possess all things

Enel Foundation Italian Fellow in Architecture, Urban Design, and Landscape Architecture
Sabrina Morreale
Architect, London and Rome; Studio Master, Architectural Association School of Architecture; Cofounder, Lemonot Studio
Roman Foraging: Spontaneous Convivial Acts within the Edgelands

Press inquiries

Andrew Mitchell

Director of Communications

212-751-7200, ext. 342

a.mitchell [at] (a[dot]mitchell[at]aarome[dot]org)

Maddalena Bonicelli

Rome Press Officer

+39 335 6857707

m.bonicelli.ext [at] (m[dot]bonicelli[dot]ext[at]aarome[dot]org)