With the pressures on students as fees increase, and on institutions as budgets shrink, philanthropic support is more important than ever.

Prof Bill Sherman, Director

The Warburg Institute is committed to attracting students from across the world, to study and learn at all levels, regardless of background or circumstance. Student scholarships and bursaries make it possible for students, who might not be able to otherwise, to attend the Institute. We strive to be a haven for people and collections who are displaced, offering a refuge as well as a cultural memory bank in line with the original mission of the Institute.

Thanks to a number of generous donations we are able to offer scholarships and bursaries to students studying at the Warburg Institute, which not only provide financial support, but as last year’s Peltz Scholar who is studying on the MA in Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture course noted, "it places confidence in the student to continue with their education. Without the generosity of foundations or donors, some educational opportunities for many, as they were for me, are very difficult to obtain"

If you are interested in helping to aid student scholarships and bursaries please get in touch with us at warburg@sas.ac.uk.

Current students to have received scholarships

American Friends Scholarships

Kari Nupson | MA Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture 2021-22

Kari Nupson is a graduate of Cedarville University (Cedarville, Ohio, USA), where she earned her BFA in Studio Art with concentrations in painting and ceramics, as well as a minor in Biblical Studies. Her primary interests include the regulation of biblical symbolism and veneration given to art within the church during both the Protestant Reformation and Catholic Counter-Reformation. She is thrilled for the opportunity to learn in an institute known for its cross-disciplinary studies in symbology and iconology. Through the Warburg Institute’s MA in Art History, Curatorship, and Renaissance Culture, as well as the American Friends’ generous funding, Kari hopes to pursue a career in the museum field, and possibly pursue her doctorate.

Nathan Deschamps | MA Cultural, Intellectual and Visual History 2020-21

Nathan Deschamps is a recent graduate from the University of British Columbia (UBC), in Vancouver, Canada. While completing the Honours History program at UBC, he studied at Humboldt Universität zu Berlin, Bauhaus Universität, and Kassel Universität. His dissertation, Marketing the Musenhof: Weimar Classicism and Kleinstaaterei Germany, 1772–1832 used primary sources from the Goethe-Schiller Archive in Weimar to explore strategies of political, aesthetic, and economic legitimisation employed by Weimar’s literati during the Goethezeit. Through the Warburg Institute’s Cultural, Intellectual and Visual History program, Nathan seeks to develop an interdisciplinary, comparative approach to historical scholarship as he pursues his doctorate.

Zahra Syed | MA Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture 2020-21

Zahra holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto in Architectural Design and Visual Studies with a minor in Art History. Having cultivated an interdisciplinary approach to research, she looks forward to specializing in the Italian Renaissance through the MA in Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture at the Warburg Institute. She aims to pursue a career in art curation and continue her research through a PhD.

Peltz Scholarships


Ewa Zakrzewska | MA in Cultural, Intellectual and Visual History 2021-22

Ewa is a graduate from the University of Warsaw particularly interested in early modern intellectual and cultural history with emphasis on scientific institutions and scholarly communication. Having obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy within Interdisciplinary Individual Studies in the Humanities, she focuses her research on topics such as epistemic premises, classificatory thought and the framing of information shaping early modern institutions of knowledge (museums, cabinets of curiosities and encyclopaedias in particular), early modern projects of universal languages, sign systems and ideograms; and, last but not least, methodological issues involved with writing intellectual history, which she tried to trace in her BA thesis devoted to semantic and pragmatic approaches to the history of ideas.  

The Warburg Institute greatly appeals to Ewa as a place to research the history of knowledge, first and foremost, by its one-of-a-kind focus on the early modern period, but even more so by its interdisciplinary ethos. She is looking forward to intellectual exchanges, crossing disciplinary boundaries, which are vital for studying pre-modern knowledge, while completing rigorous training in methods and skills essential to intellectual historians of the early modern period. Pursuing this long-time goal and dream as an international student would have hardly been possible without the generous support of the Peltz Scholarship, and Ewa is deeply grateful and humbled for being offered this unique opportunity.  

Sikeena Karmali Ahmed  | MA in Cultural, Intellectual and Visual History 2021-22

I am interested in pursuing a Masters of Research in Intellectual, Cultural and Visual History at the Warburg Institute as a stepping-stone towards a PhD, to bring full circle an intellectual journey that began at the age of 16 studying classics at Bologna in Italy. It was during this time that I was introduced to the incredible contribution of Muslim scholars to the preservation, interpretation and understanding of classical literature, philosophy, astronomy, medicine, physics, alchemy – in short all the humanities and sciences. I would like to continue my research by pursuing a PhD that would allow me to thoroughly explore and understand a historical question that has increasingly and over a long career become a passion. Upon completing a PhD I hope to be able to pursue the path of the scholar – teaching, researching, writing and lecturing.  

I have chosen to study at the Warburg for many reasons however three of these are the most compelling. i) The Warburg offers a unique opportunity to adopt a multidisciplinary approach where culture, the humanities and the sciences are intertwined. This civilizational approach is ideally suited to the questions I would like to explore, such as the idea of humanism across disciplines and approaches. ii) I am very much inspired by the work of Professor Charles Burnett and eager to have an opportunity to learn from him by enrolling in his classes. Finally iii) the Warburg offers a renowned programme in Renaissance studies and I believe the strength of my research arguments will be more convincing if they are situated within an understanding of the Renaissance to document the influence of Muslim intellectual thought rather than without – in the field of Islamic Studies for example. I believe fundamentally that we are a single humanity, united across every frontier, including the aspiration towards knowledge and towards evoking the sublime in our everyday lives.  

The Peltz Scholarship will enable me to return to university after a hiatus of 20 years to pursue scholarship about which I have become passionate.  

Eleanor Lerman | MA Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture 2021-22

Eleanor holds a First Class undergraduate degree in History of Art from the University of Bristol. Her interests centre around the religious rituals, gendered iconography, and cultural exchange of the medieval and Renaissance periods. Her dissertation, Bitter Women and the Bread of Affliction: Exploring the Relationship between Gender, Food, and Ritual in Illuminated Haggadot from Fourteenth Century Iberia, uncovered clear visual connections between Jewish women and food within the ritual context of Passover, proposing an argument in favour of female patronage and reception in three Haggadot.  

Eleanor’s wider interests encompass the Netherlandish Renaissance and Jewish manuscript making. She centres her study around devotional activity, and the emotions and belief systems tied to ancient liturgy. This year, Eleanor founded an art history journal titled Dustcover, which focuses on the emotional responses and lived experiences behind art. The journal explores how art absorbs us, ultimately shaping the way we interact with our surroundings.  

"I chose to study at the Warburg Institute because the Art History, Curatorship, and Renaissance Culture MA closely aligns with my ardent interest in medieval and Renaissance art history. I am particularly drawn to the MA’s interdisciplinary focus on images, language, and cultural memory. Additionally, I am eager to build upon my curatorial experience within the National Gallery’s famed collection and archive, hoping to acquire first hand experience in the conservation, curation, and technical examination of works from the period.  "

"The funding from the Peltz scholarship will allow me to pursue my studies at a specialist Institution amongst like minded students and staff. The financial aid has provided me with the confidence and unrivalled educational opportunity to continue my studies at a cutting edge Institution."  

Jakub Ochocinski | MA Cultural, Intellectual and Visual History 2020-21

I completed my BA in anthropology and art history at SOAS in 2019. It is there that I cemented my interest in the productions, behaviours, and histories of people. My thesis, “From Turner’s Liminality to Nietzsche’s Dance Imagery: Tracing Inner Transformations through 5 Rhythms Dance”, summarised the broad spectrum of my interests. My aim in this particular work was to contribute to scholarship of dance, religion and the body through fieldwork orientated around both auto-ethnographical accounts as well as ethnographical information from interviews and encounters. Ultimately, my argument was led by examining the 5 Rhythms, a contemporary form of movement meditation, through multiple scholarly lenses including liminality, collective effervescence and the revaluation of Christian values in Nietzsche’s Gay Science- finding that dance as theopraxis (theo- God, Praxis-practice) holds the ability to allow individuals, through group and solo practice, to find embodiment and thus an ability to change their actions, ways of thinking, or habits. 
Alongside my background, it is my personal and academic interests in the occult that drew me towards the Warburg Institute. Through my studies I seek to unite hidden histories with time-sensitive philosophies that shaped individual and collective identities. I am interested in symbols and magic existing as archaic primitive experiences across time, or those which have been ascribed a particular force with a certain influence dependant on time. And how such experiences seep into contemporary life- whether they are found in Ficinio’s astrological image, Poliziano’s humanistic poetry or Simon Forman’s eclectic diaries. 
The Peltz Scholarship has allowed me to enter a world which facilitates my interests and passions beyond measure. I am glad and thankful to be a part of a community which seeks to unite past and present mysteries with an inspired future. Through the Warburg, I seek to be a part of a generation that imagines a future inspired by wisdom of the past, community collaboration, and meaningful education. 

Florence Forte | MA Cultural, Intellectual and Visual History 2020-21

Florence is a teacher of Classics with over five years’ experience in the UK and Italy. She completed her BA (Hons) at Nottingham followed by a PGCE at King’s College London. In 2015, she moved to Florence where the Renaissance captured her imagination and she has been drawing links between ancient and modern culture ever since. In her spare time, Florence runs “Classics Abroad” events, promoting the study of classical reception in Italian art, history and literature with students from all backgrounds. 

Gniewomir Jedrzej Hawrasz | MA Cultural, Intellectual and Visual History 2020-21

Gniewomir Hawrasz is a history student passionate with a strong desire for becoming a professional scholar one day. His current research focuses on the reception of Platonism in Renaissance Italy with particular attention for works of Florentine humanists. Gniewomir graduated from the Ancient History and History course at Swansea University with the First Class honours overall award on his diploma. His dissertation focused on Marsilio Ficino’s representation and views on friendship, based on the first volume of Ficino’s Letters, De Amore (Ficinos’ commentary on Plato’s Symposium) and Theologia Platonica. He investigated potential traces of Socrates/Plato, Neoplatonists (Plotinus, Plethon, Iamblichus, Porphyry) and other intellectual influences (e.g. Stoics, Pythagoreans, Aristotelian scholasticism, Stilo nouvo love poetry) on Marsilio’s views on eros and philia.

Gniewomir’s professional interests lay in the study of the history of ideas and emotions, their development and correlation between cognitive perception of sentiments and languages. Over the past three years of his undergraduate studies, one of Gniewomir’s main focus was developing his linguistic proficiency in English, Ancient Greek and Latin. Learning ancient languages through the medium of his second language (English) allowed him not only to reason better in different languages, according to peculiar intellectual substratum conveyed by a structure of each language, yet also to widen horizons of his own understanding of himself.

Inspired by the ideas of the Greek paideia, Roman classical rhetorical education, and Jesuit eloquentia perfecta, Gniewomir’s aim is not only to become a scholar but a modern humanist. The Warburg Institute is an embodiment of intellectual and moral properties Gniewomir is striving for. Thus an opportunity to study in the university is one of a kind. Thanks to the Peltz Scholarship Gniewomir has a chance to focus on this very aim and contribute to restoring what has been lost over centuries. 

Harriet Cheema-Grubb | MA Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture 2020-21

Harriet holds a first class honours degree from the University of Durham; she is fluent in German and Italian and has pursued courses of study at the prestigious University of Rome, ‘La Sapienza’, and institutions in Salzburg, Florence, and Munich. Her research is concerned with the determinants of man’s historical, collective and individual gaze, and the pivotal role played by art in the formation and propagation of collective identities. In the course of her undergraduate studies, she examined Austro-Italian cultural exchange during the Renaissance and Baroque, the subordination of reality to the pursuit of myth legitimised by proponents of the Italian Social Republic, reflections of theocracy in the art of Reformation Europe, and the relationship between the sacred and the secular, temporal and spiritual, in medieval and early modern expressions of power.

Through her research, she has recognised that the academic exploration of art history is enhanced by an understanding of critical curatorship and the vital role played by curators - both historical and contemporary - in directing the viewer’s gaze. She is therefore excited by the opportunity to engage with collections and study under experts at the Warburg and the National Gallery, further exploring the link between written word and painted work. Recognising the profound effect that artists, patrons and curators can have as storytellers, she hopes through her own research at MA and PhD level to encourage others to engage with the extraordinary power of art which transcends the boundary of centuries.

Jagoda Pawlak | MA Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture 2020-21

Jagoda Pawlak is a graduate of History of Art at UCL and a prospective student of MA in Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture at Warburg Institute. Her interests include early modern print culture and its role in constructing modern global geographies. During her MA at Warburg, Jagoda hopes to deepen her understanding of the Italian Renaissance culture. She intends to explore these themes further in doctoral research in the future.

JB Trapp Scholarship

Guillermo Ezequiel Willis | PhD 

Guillermo earned a Bachelor of Arts in History of Art and a Bachelor of Education from the University of Buenos Aires (2015). He pursued postgraduate studies at the Warburg Institute, where he achieved a Master of Arts in Cultural and Intellectual History of the Renaissance (2018). His MA dissertation, ‘The Heart-Machine: Giovanni Alfonso Borelli on the Movement of the Heart’, led to a further exploration of the impact on the field of anatomy of the French philosopher Pierre Gassendi’s revival of Epicurus’s thought in the 17th century, which is the subject examined by his current PhD research project.

In past years, Guillermo had also been researching and cataloguing 16th and 17th-centuries prints and drawings in the collection of the National Museum of Fine Arts (Argentina), and held the Michael Bromberg Fellowship at the Department of Prints and Drawings of the British Museum (2019). In addition to his academic interests, Guillermo earned a Bachelor of Music in Bandoneon from the Conservatorio Superior de Música ‘Manuel de Falla’ (2015), and is keenly interested in playing Tango music.  

Rita Yates | PhD

While studying for my MA in Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture I knew that I wanted to continue onto the PhD programme at the Warburg. Foremost, the library is exceptional (I always find what I need); the events programme (particularly the Work in Progress seminars) offers invaluable opportunities to hear from scholars working in a variety of disciplines; and informal conversations with the wonderful research community of staff, students, and readers continue to open up new lines of enquiry. 

Due to the current circumstances, I have been unable to undertake any archival research. As I enter my final year, this scholarship will enable me to travel back and forth to libraries, archives, and museums in France as needed, free from the financial and time related constraints associated with short-term travel grants. Put simply, without such an award, I would have struggled to complete the remainder of my primary research.  

Saxl-Gombrich Scholarship

Elisa Stafferini | PhD 

Thesis title: Women in Arms: Female Warriors in Italian art 1500-1700

Elisa's PhD project focuses on the ethical and political allusions of armed women in 16th- and 17th-century Italian painting. The early modern period saw a substantial increase in the number of images of women bearing weapons and/or wearing armour, but they have yet to receive sustained scholarly attention. With a combined study of visual, archival and literary material, her research aims to unravel the ideological importance of this widespread literary and iconographic figure.

On a broader level, Elisa's investigations focus on 1. the interconnections between textual sources and visual representations 2. the allegorical meaning of the imagery 3. the role of patronage in relation to the political situation of the time.

Before starting her PhD, Elisa completed her BA and MA in Art History at Università La Sapienza, both awarded with summa cum laude. Elisa's studies in Rome laid the foundation for her continued graduate work. Her MA thesis focused on the visual corpus of Tasso’s Gerusalemme Liberata and connected moral and allegorical meanings of the poem with 17th-century society and politics. This research was assembled into an article, being published by the Journal Studi Tassiani.

In 2018 she was awarded the scholarship “Perfezionamento all’estero” (Università La Sapienza) involving two-terms of postgraduate research abroad, which she undertook, after being offered a place as a Recognised Student, at Oxford University. There, in the Department of Art History, she analysed the interrelations between visual art, literature and the theoretical debate on women’s virtues, focusing on the understudied Discorso della virtù femminile e donnesca by Torquato Tasso, an important contribution to the late 16th-century querelle des femmes. These investigations are incorporated into her current PhD research.

In 2019, through the Project “Torno Subito 2019” Elisa was given the opportunity to undertake two internships of digitalization of iconographic materials. The first one was carried out between September 2019 and March 2020 at the Photographic Collection of the Warburg Institute. The second will take place at the Fototeca of the Bibliotheca Hertziana.

Rubinstein Scholarship

Rossella Monopoli | PhD 

The Warburg Institute is renowned to be one of the world’s major centres for the study of the Renaissance in all its aspects and applying for a PhD at the Institute stood for me as the best and natural progression of my education as an art historian interested in the study of this fascinating period. 

This generous funding will give me the opportunity to conduct my research in London, being part of the stimulating community of the Warburg and interact with scholars from all over the world collaborating with the Institute. I am sure that this experience will contribute to widen the scope of my research and to enrich my approach to the study of the Renaissance art and culture, giving me stronger methodological insights and, not least, the opportunity of living in the amazing city of London. 

If you are interested in helping to aid student scholarships and bursaries please get in touch with us at warburg@sas.ac.uk.