Prof. David M. Stone has joined the board of a leading center for the study of the arts and humanities in Rome.

American Academy trustee

Art history professor elected to board of scholarly center in Rome

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3:08 p.m., Feb. 13, 2012--David M. Stone, professor of art history at the University of Delaware, has been elected to the board of trustees of the American Academy in Rome, a leading American overseas center for independent studies and advanced research in the fine arts and humanities.

In 1997-98, Stone was the winner of the Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Rome Prize Fellowship, one of up to 30 highly competitive Rome Prize Fellowships that the Academy offers to artists and scholars. Fellows are chosen by juries of experts in the fields of ancient, medieval, Renaissance and early modern studies; modern Italian studies; architecture, landscape architecture, design, historic preservation and conservation; literature; musical composition; and visual arts. 

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"The academy is a place where gifted artists, writers and scholars live together, experience Rome and share ideas while also working on individual projects," Stone said.

The American Academy in Rome began as a collaborative effort in 1893 at the World's Columbian Exhibition when a small group—including architects Charles Follen McKim and Daniel Burnham, painters John LaFarge and Francis Millet and sculptors Augustus Saint-Gaudens and Daniel Chester French—resolved to create a center to study art amid the classical tradition of ancient Rome. They chose Rome as the site of the academy because, in their words, "with the architectural and sculptural monuments and mural paintings, its galleries filled with the chef d'oeuvres of every epoch, no other city offers such a field for study or an atmosphere so replete with precedents."

In 1894, McKim founded the American School of Architecture in Rome. He involved not only artists and architects but also the financial geniuses of his time; J.P. Morgan, John D. Rockefeller, Jr., and Henry Clay Frick all contributed to the enterprise. A year later, the Archaeological Institute of America established the American School of Classical Studies in Rome, and in 1911, the board of trustees voted to merge and the two schools, which became today's American Academy in Rome.

Stone has taught at UD since 1987. He earned his bachelor's degree at the University of California at Berkeley and his master's and doctoral degrees at Harvard University. A specialist in Italian 17th century art, he is best known for his studies of Caravaggio (especially his works for the Knights of Malta) and the paintings and drawings of the Bolognese artist Guercino. In addition to the Rome Prize, Stone has received senior fellowships at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton.

The board of trustees, to which Stone was elected to a renewable three-year term, meets annually both in Rome at its main campus on the Janiculum and at its New York offices.  A list of current and prior board members includes the painter Chuck Close, editor of the New York Review of Books Robert B. Silvers, performance artist and musician Laurie Anderson, poet Mark Strand, historian Anthony Grafton, architect Michael Graves, art historian John Pinto and classicist Michael Putnam.

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