BA/MA (Cambridge), Ph.D. (Courtauld Institute of Art, University of London)

Contact details:

The Courtauld Institute of Art

Somerset House


London WC2R 0RN

Fax: +44 (0)20 7848 2410

Georgia Clarke discussing architecture
'Discussing architecture on the street, Siena July 2009

Temporary and permanent architecture and performance in Certaldo, July 2009.
Temporary and permanent architecture and performance in Certaldo, July 2009.

A ‘Streetlife’ discussion of the performance and processional qualities of Siena’s Piazza del Campo, July 2009.
A ‘Streetlife’ discussion of the performance and processional qualities of Siena’s Piazza del Campo, July 2009.

Georgia Clarke read Classics at Cambridge and was involved in archaeological projects in Tours, Pompeii, and Rome. She did her Ph.D. on Renaissance architecture at The Courtauld Institute of Art. She has taught at The Courtauld since 1993 and was appointed a Reader in 2004. She has also taught for the Open University, at Cambridge University, at UEA, and at the Architectural Association in London. She has held a number of fellowships, including a Rome Scholarship in Italian Studies at The British School at Rome, in 1987-88, a Charter Fellowship in History of Art at Wolfson College, Oxford, in 1992-93, and in 1999-2000 was Deborah Loeb Brice Fellow at Villa I Tatti, The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies, Florence.

Her book, Roman House – Renaissance Palaces. Inventing Antiquity in Fifteenth-Century Italy (Cambridge University Press, 2003), received the Alice Davis Hitchcock Medallion from the Society of Architectural Historians of Great Britain in 2005, as well as Honourable Mentions by the Renaissance Society of America for the Phyllis Goodhart Gordan Prize, and by the Fondazione Salimbeni per le Arti Figurative for the 22nd ‘Salimbeni Prize for Art History and Critics’.

Her MA option at The Courtauld explores aspects of the architectural, urbanistic, and cultural life of Rome from the 15th to 17th centuries, and Rome in the 15th century will be the subject of her next major publication. Her teaching extends from the 15th-17th centuries but her own research is mainly concentrated on the 15th to mid-16th centuries.

She is currently co-investigator, with the Award holder Dr Fabrizio Nevola (University of Bath), of an AHRC-funded ‘Beyond Text’ Research Network (2008-10). This is a two year project entitled ‘Street life and street culture: between Early Modern Europe and the present’ . This project involves art historians, architectural historians and theoreticians, planners, public officials, artists and critics, film-makers, a sound artist and an actor, to create an interdisciplinary, international community drawn from the UK, Europe, and the USA. During 2009-10 – through two thematic Study Days, a session at the International Conference of the European Association of Urban Historians in Ghent , & a final conference at The Courtauld Institute on 2 October 2010 – the Network is considering how streets shaped and informed the daily lives of urban communities in the past, and how this historical experience relates to contemporary realities.

Research Interests


  • the architectural, urbanistic and cultural life of fifteenth- and sixteenth-century Rome
  • the urban, artistic, and political culture of fifteenth- and early sixteenth-century Bologna
  • the relationship between the Renaissance and Antiquity
  • issues of architecture and language
  • ways that buildings and cities functioned and were experienced in the past as physical and cultural entities

No courses being taught during 2010-11 – on research leave

Titles of PhD theses Supervised

  • Urbanism in Siena (c.1452-1512). Policy and Patrons: Interactions between Public and Private (1998)
  • The Religious Artistic and Architectural Patronage of Cardinal Pietro Aldobrandini (1571-1621) (2005)
  • Mapping Farnese Rome: the Urban Planning Process and Projects under Pope Paul III, 1534-49 (2005)

PhD theses currently in progress

  • Patterns in Ownership of Urban, Commercial Property  in Rome, 1500-1527, Reflected in the Holdings of the Società di San Salvatore ad Sancta Sanctorum and Leading Members and Officials of this Confraternity
  • The Urban Placement of Pope Gregory XIII’s Missionary Colleges in Rome - the Promulgation of Catholic Faith through Education




‘History, Politics, and Art on Palace Façades in Early Sixteenth-Century Rome’, in Some Degree of Happiness. Studi di architettura in onore di Howard Burns, ed. M. Beltramini and C. Elam (Pisa, 2010), 233-58

Leonardo da Vinci, Penguin Active Reading Level 4 (Pearson Longman, 2010) – a biography of Leonardo written for non art-historical English Language learners

 ‘Architecture, Languages, and Style in Fifteenth-Century Italy’, JWCI 76 (2008), 169-89

‘Giovanni II Bentivoglio and the Uses of Chivalry. Towards the Creation of a “Republican Court” in Fifteenth-Century Bologna’, in Artistic Exchange and Cultural Translation in the Italian Renaissance City, ed. S. Campbell and S. Milner (Cambridge University Press, 2004), 162-86

‘Vitruvian Paradigms’, Papers of the British School at Rome 70 (2002), 317–44

 ‘Filarete and his Treatise on Architecture’, in The Renaissance in Europe: Courts, Patrons and Poets, ed. D. Mateer (New Haven and London, 2000), 98–116

Georgia Clarke and Paul Crossley eds, Architecture and Language: Constructing Identity in European Architecture, c.1000–c.1650 (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge and New York, 2000)

 ‘Magnificence and the City: Giovanni II Bentivoglio and Architecture in Fifteenth-Century Bologna’, Renaissance Studies 13 (1999), 397–411

‘Fra Giocondo’, in The Encyclopedia of the Renaissance, ed. P. Grendler (New York, 1999), vol. 3, 57–59

‘“La più bella e meglio lavorata opera”: Beauty and Good Design in Italian Renaissance Architecture’, in Concepts of Beauty in Renaissance Art, ed. F. Ames Lewis and M. Rogers, (Aldershot and Brookfield, Vermont, 1998), 89–100

‘Ambrogio Traversari: Artistic Adviser in Early Fifteenth-Century Florence?’, Renaissance Studies 11 (1997), 161–78

‘Gazeteer’ with R. Ling in R. Ling ed., The Insula of the Menander at Pompeii. Vol. 1: The Structures (Oxford, 1997), 257–324

‘The Palazzo Orsini in Nola. A Renaissance Relationship with Antiquity’, Apollo (July 1996), 44–50

‘Paul III and the Façade of the Casa Crivelli in Rome’, Renaissance Studies 3 (1989), 252–66


Renaissance; Architecture; Cultural History; Rome; Bologna; Architecture and Language; Palaces; Renaissance Architecture