CIMA 2019–20 Fellowships

Each year the Center for Italian Modern Art (CIMA) awards multiple CIMA Fellowships to support research and study of Italian modern and contemporary art for doctoral and postdoctoral scholars. Citizens of all nationalities are eligible. CIMA offers a unique experience to its fellows: the annual exhibition serves as a hub for scholars from diverse academic backgrounds to share research derived from the artworks on view with each other and the public. Emphasis is split between individualized study—gaining an intimate knowledge of artists represented through close looking and through researching in depth a topic raised by the installation—and public discourse, as represented by collaboration on public programming and leading interactive exhibition tours. During their residency, fellows also have the opportunity to pursue their own research and connect with scholars and other professionals in and around New York.

In addition, CIMA supports a Travel Fellowship for candidates residing outside of Italy who would like either to enroll in Italy at the master’s level or above at an accredited academic program or who wish to conduct research for a dissertation, book, or other scholarly project related to modern Italian art. As the mission of this fellowship is to provide an opportunity to study in Italy for those who have not had that opportunity, preference will be given to candidates who have never studied in Italy. While this fellowship is unrelated to CIMA’s annual season of exhibition and programs, efforts will be made to arrange an opportunity for the selected fellow to present the outcomes of their research for a public audience at CIMA following the completion of the fellowship.

CIMA is also pleased to offer an Affiliated Fellowship with the Civitella Ranieri Foundation
in Umbertide, Italy, to support an art historian seeking a six-week residency in 2020 at this storied artist community in Umbria. The fellowship includes round-trip travel, room, board, and workspace. Like the Travel Fellowship, this opportunity does not need to pertain to CIMA’s exhibition and program season. In the case of this Civitella Fellowship, applicants may be working on subjects in any area of art history; they do not need to be specializing in twentieth century Italian art. It is recommended that applicants be at a late stage in their projects, when they are ready to write for extended periods rather than conduct research, in order to take full advantage of Civitella’s community and offerings.

2019–20 Fellowships
The exhibition for CIMA’s next season (October 2019–June 2020) focuses on the series of nudes created by Marino Marini (1901-80) between 1936 and 1945. Though Marini’s place within the history of sculpture of the first half of the twentieth century is well established, this series remains the least studied of his oeuvre. After having launched his career with works that explicitly referenced archaic styles (such as Egyptian or Etruscan art), and after having looked to late Romanesque sculpture for solutions to the problems of expression in three dimensions, Marini focused on the theme of the female nude, which became the means for him to continuously explore his innovative artistic vision.

The sculptures on view at CIMA will attest to Marini’s attention to the details of pose, shape, and modeling. Together, they examine one of the central modes of sculptural research of the interwar period: the reduction of the body to pure plastic forms, while the surfaces of those forms exhibit, paradoxically, a perceptible, provocative carnality. The installation will also include a series of Marini’s drawings on this subject, offering further insight into the artist’s creative process. In keeping with CIMA’s tradition of juxtaposing work by better known artists within its exhibitions, the installation will also include select drawings by Willem de Kooning. In dialogue with Marini’s sculptures that lie at the boundary between figuration and abstraction, these works on paper will further underscore the importance of this theme to many artists at mid-century, offering visitors alternate paths to understanding the Italian artist’s search for a means to portray in a contemporary way a classical subject such as the female form.

While any topic related to Marini’s artistic career is welcomed, CIMA is particularly interested
in proposals that enrich our understanding of the larger context of sculptors working, in Italy
and abroad, during the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s who were engaged with the boundary between abstraction and figuration. How was the subject of the female body in particular addressed in sculpture in the prewar, wartime, and immediate postwar period? How did the choice of material (such as bronze, wood, plaster) affect the sculptural process?

The deadline for the Fellowship application is Sunday, January 27, 2019. Finalists will be interviewed via video or phone in the second half of February, and the selection process will be completed by March 1, 2019. Application materials must be submitted in English.

Fellowship Details

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Qelle: CIMA