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Flavia Vanni

Flavia Vanni
Newcastle University
Defining the “East”: Byzantine Stucco Decoration in a Mediterranean Context

Dr. Vanni is interested in sculpture in Byzantine architecture and its materialities. She is a postdoctoral researcher at Newcastle University (2024–2027). Previously, she was a postdoctoral researcher at Università degli Studi di Salerno and the British School at Athens. She received her PhD in Byzantine Studies from the University of Birmingham in 2021. Her project at ANAMED will deepen her PhD research on architectural plaster reliefs in the middle and late Byzantine period (ninth–fifteenth century) for a forthcoming monograph.

She investigates plaster reliefs by drawing together an array of sources, ranging from epigraphy to literary texts and manuscripts, combined with cutting-edge stratigraphical analysis, which she carries out in situ.

This allows her to explore the lives of the artisans, their economic conditions, and their specialization levels compared with their status and education in previous centuries. In turn, this facilitates a detailed exploration of micro-regional patronage patterns and provides new insights into cross-cultural exchanges across the Mediterranean, notably with Italy and Islam. At ANAMED, she explores the connections between Byzantine and Seljuk stucco production and the first centuries of the Ottoman Empire.