Friday 20 March 2020

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The winner of the 2020 School of Advanced Study (SAS) PhD Research Seminar Series Prize is Lydia Goodson, a research student with the Warburg Institute. It is the second year running that a Warburg student has taken the honours.

Announced by the co-convenors of the award scheme, Dr Sue Onslow, deputy director of the Institute of Commonwealth Studies (ICWS), and Naomi Wells of the Institute of Modern Languages Research (IMLR), it carries a £500 prize. Lydia Goodson earned it for her presentation: Painted Performance: Art and Theatre in an Umbrian Confraternity.

Lydia’s paper came out of her research on artistic patronage in Umbria between 1488 and 1540. The lay religious associations, known as confraternities, of Perugia were prolific patrons of art in this period. 

‘My paper focussed on showing how one painting commissioned by the S Agostino confraternity conveys important information about the practice of devotion and theatrical performance in confraternities and about a deep interconnection between that practice and artistic commissions, that has not previously been explored,’ explained Lydia. ‘The seminar was a great opportunity to widen my experience of presenting and I now plan to submit the paper for publication in a peer-reviewed journal.’

Dr Onslow commented: ‘We felt that Lydia’s presentation was outstanding even in a field of many other high-quality presentations, underlining the strength and variety of PhD research at SAS. We want to thank all the presenters and students in our academic community for their energy, participation and support for their colleagues throughout this year's seminars. It has been a particularly impressive year, and they are to be congratulated as well.' 

'Lydia Goodson was a promising MA student at the University of Sussex and has been an excellent PhD student at the Warburg,' said Professor Michelle O'Malley, the institute's deputy director. 'I am delighted that she is receiving recognition for her thoughtful and original scholarship.'

The call for proposals for next year's SAS PhD seminar series will be circulated in the early summer 2020.