I am a PhD Candidate at the Centre for the Study of the Renaissance, co-supervised by prof. dr. Ingrid De Smet and dr. David Lines.
Combining perspectives from my background in Italian Studies and Book History, in my doctoral thesis I study the development of the town atlas genre in early modern Europe, with Joan Blaeu’s Theatrum Italiae (Amsterdam, 1663 - 1682) as a main focal point.
My research sets out to show how the texts and images presented in town atlases - meant to capture the essence of Europe’s urban centres in strong connection with contemporary interpretations of geography and chorography (following the rediscovery of Ptolemy’s Geography in the Renaissance) - made sense to their compilers and readers. By looking at imagery and (para)textual elements appearing in the Theatrum Italiae and studying archival sources related to its creation, I investigate the purpose of this particular town atlas to three, closely connected parties: its intended audience, its publishers, and the powerful Italian patrons who lent essential creative and financial support in exchange for the particular portrayal of their territories in the atlases.
I am particularly interested in the socio-cultural value of the monumental Theatrum Italiae not only as an aide mémoire – helping physical and mental travellers study Italy’s towns and monuments from home, complement experiences abroad, and retain memories – but just as much as a vehicle asserting individual erudition, social prestige, and worldly power through print.
- ‘Publishers at the Intersection of Cultures. The significance of Italo-Dutch contacts in the creation process of Joan Blaeu’s Theatrum Italiae (1663)’ in Incontri. Rivista europea di Studi Italiani, 30:2 (2015), 70-79.
- ‘A Changing Perspective on the Eternal City Revealed: Blaeu's Admiranda Urbis Romæ (1663) Compared to Later Editions of the Town Atlas of Rome’ in Quaerendo, 45: 1-2 (2015), 108-124.
- MA in Book and Digital Media Studies;
- BA in Italian Language & Culture (cum laude, both at Universiteit Leiden, the Netherlands).
- CADRE Scholarship fully funding PhD (2015 – 2019);
- Humanities Research Centre Doctoral Fellowship, for the organisation of ‘More than meets the page: Printing text and images in Italy, 1570s-1700s’, a one-day, interdisciplinary conference on 4 March 2017 (further supported by the Society for Renaissance Studies);
- NIKI Fellowship for research in Florence at the Nederlands Interuniversitair Kunsthistorisch Instituut;
- Newberry Renaissance Consortium Grant to present at Multidisciplinary Graduate Student Conference 2016 at the Newberry Library, Chicago;
- My MA thesis 'Discovering Rome through Joan Blaeu’s Admiranda Urbis Romæ: the creation of the town atlas of Rome (Amsterdam, 1663) in the light of Italian-Dutch relationships in the seventeenth century' was awarded the Elsevier – Johan de Witt Thesis Prize 2014 for best thesis on the Dutch Golden Age.