Elizabeth Merril

elizabeth merrill



Elizabeth Merrill specializes in the art and architecture of Renaissance Italy. She studied at Columbia University (B.A. 2007) and at the University of Virginia (M.A. 2010, Ph.D. 2015). 

Her research focuses on Early Modern architectural practices, and the means by which architects designed, communicated and developed their buildings. Her book project, The Complete Renaissance Architect: Francesco di Giorgio Reexamined, explores the multifaceted career of this extraordinary architect in its entirety, considering the defining conditions of his practice, and elucidating the previously obscure relationships that connected the many, seemingly disparate, components of his professional life.

In addition to her independent research, Elizabeth is the editor of Creating Place in Early Modern European Architecture (forthcoming, Amsterdam University Press, 2020). She is also active as a book review editor for Architectural Histories, and has co-edited a special issue for the journal on Resilience in Architectural History (2019). 

She has received fellowships from the Renaissance Society of America, Humboldt Universität Berlin, The Morgan Library and Drawing Institute, the Thomas Jefferson Memorial Foundation, and the Samuel H. Kress Foundation. From 2016 – 2019, she was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin.

Selected Publications

“The Spedale di Santa Maria della Scala and the Construction of Siena.” Creating Place in Early Modern European Architecture. Ed. E. Merrill. Amsterdam University Press, 2020. (forthcoming)  

“Combining the intrinsic and the extrinsic: Francesco di Giorgio's model drawings.” The Creation of Space and the Connection between Models and Drawings as Design Tools. Ed. L. Bosman. Leiden: Brill, 2019. (forthcoming)

“Copying Models and Creating Theory: the Education of the Architect in Renaissance Italy.”

Proyecto, Arquitectura y Sociedad en la edad Moderna (Siglos XIV al XVII). Ed. Guido Cimadomo. Madrid: Ediciones Asimétricas, 2019. 90 – 119.

“Zaha Hadid’s Contemporary Art Center and the Perils of New Museum Architecture.” Architecture Research Quarterly 23.3 (2019), 1-15. doi:10.1017/S1359135519000204

“From the Pantheon to the Anthropocene: Introducing Resilience in Architectural History,” with Stylianos Giamarelos. Architectural Histories 7(2019): 1–11, DOI: https://doi.org/10.5334/ah.406

“The ‘professione di architetto’ in Renaissance Italy.” Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 76, 1 (2017): 13-35, DOI: 10.1525/jsah.2017.76.1.13

“Pocket-size architectural notebooks and the codification of practical knowledge.” The Structures of Practical Knowledge. Ed. Matteo Valleriani. Cham: Springer Press, 2017. 21 – 54.

“A Brief History of Beauty in the Planning and Design of American Cities.” The Beautiful: Thriving Cities Endowment Brief. University of Virginia, Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture, 2014. 6 – 12. http://thrivingcities.com/sites/default/files/Endownment-Brief-The-Beautiful.pdf

“The Trattato as Textbook: Francesco di Giorgio’s Vision for the Renaissance Architect.” Architectural Histories Journal 1 (2013): 20, 1 – 19, DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5334/ah.at