Call for participants: South Etruria Survey project

Monte del Forno (Tenuta il Forno), Casale S. Giulia, from a mausoleum in the Fosso di Piansacoccia, Ward-Perkins Collection, South Etruria Series
Courtesy of the BSR Photographic Archive

The British School at Rome is seeking to establish contact with any Alumni who took part in the South Etruria Survey, 1955–75, who would be happy to share their experiences as part of an AHRC-funded PhD project.

The BSR has recently commenced a collaboration with Durham University on an AHRC-funded Northern Bridge Collaborative Doctoral Award, supporting the research of CDA Student Poppy F. Grima into the John B. Ward-Perkins photo archive from the South Etruria Survey, 1955–75.

A short abstract for the project can be found below. In order to develop some wider context for the archive material, Poppy would be very pleased to hear from anyone who might have taken part in the survey and who would be willing to share any photographs or memories from their days in the field.

Should you wish to get in touch, please contact Poppy directly at:

Project Summary:

The field site and the photographic archive: Landscape archaeology, photography, and the post-war imagination through the lens of the South Etruria Survey, 1955–75.

‘Monuments Man’ John Ward-Perkins became Director of the British School at Rome in 1946, a time of radical change in the Italian countryside. New agricultural methods were both revealing and damaging previously unknown ancient sites. In response, he instigated a ‘salvage’ project, the South Etruria Survey, thereby pioneering ‘landscape archaeology’ in the Mediterranean. The Survey’s archaeological data have recently been reanalysed (Patterson, Witcher & Di Giuseppe (2020): The changing landscapes of Rome’s Northern Hinterland: the British School at Rome’s Tiber Valley Project) but its 7500-strong photo archive remains under researched. This PhD project will use the archive to investigate how photographic methods and archaeological ideas developed amid post-war anxieties about destruction and preservation, shaping the imagination of both ancient and modern Italian landscapes.

Funded by AHRC Northern Bridge; supervised by Dr Robert Witcher & Professor Christina Riggs (Durham) and Alessandra Giovenco (BSR).