Project Team

‘Music in the Art of Renaissance Italy’ brings together a team of researchers led by Dr Tim Shephard, including Research Associate Sanna Raninen, doctoral students Serenella Sessini and Laura Cristina Stefanescu, and Dr Beth Williamson (Reader in Art History, University of Bristol) as Project Advisor.

Principal Investigator - Dr Tim Shephard
Tim is a Lecturer in Musicology at the University of Sheffield and Visiting Research Fellow at the Centre for Music, Gender and Identity (MuGI), University of Huddersfield. Tim's work on music, visual art and identity has appeared in numerous journals, including Renaissance Quarterly, Renaissance Studies, Viator, Early Music and Journal of Design History among others. He is author of Echoing Helicon: Music, Art and Identity in the Este Studioli (Oxford University Press, 2014), and co-editor with Anne Leonard (Chicago) of The Routledge Companion to Music and Visual Culture (Routledge, 2013).

Research Associate - Sanna Raninen
Sanna completed her BMus (hons.) and MMus at the University of Glasgow under the supervision of Dr. Warwick Edwards, specialising in the study and edition of fifteenth-century manuscript and Latin contrafacta in Central European music manuscripts. Sanna is completing her PhD thesis at the University of Manchester under the supervision of Prof. Thomas Schmidt on the early printed sources of polyphony. The thesis is a part of an AHRC -funded project 'Production and Reading of Music Sources'. Sanna's research interests include mise-en-page, notation, and manuscript and print studies, with a particular interest in woodcuts. Sanna is currently researching the depiction of the musical elements in images relating to festivities in the Renaissance.

Project Adviser - Dr Beth Williamson
Beth is a Reader in History of Art at the University of Bristol. Her research interests include fourteenth-century visual and material culture, the relationships between liturgy, devotion and visual culture, materiality and media, and the sensory and bodily experience. She published a monograph on the image of the Virgin seated on the ground, The Madonna of Humility: Development, Dissemination and Reception (Boydell and Brewer, 2009) and also several articles in journals such as Speculum, Studies in Iconography and Art History.

Doctoral Student - Serenella Sessini
Serenella graduated in Art History at the University of Pisa, Italy (2009) and in Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture at the Warburg Institute in London, UK (2014). During her academic career she has focused on Italian Renaissance art and culture, and researched the attribution of two Italian Renaissance paintings in a private collection, the symbolism of the lion in art and the use of precious stones in Renaissance Florence. Her interests span Renaissance art and music, iconology, and material culture. Serenella is currently researching depictions of musical angels in religious paintings and domestic devotion.

Doctoral Student - Laura Cristina Stefanescu
Laura graduated from an MA in Medieval Studies at Utrecht University, the Netherlands (2010), following a BA in History at the University of Bucharest, Romania (2008). Her previous research is related to the representation of the cycle of Arthurian legends in visual art and to votive depictions of Romanian princes from the late medieval and early modern periods, focusing on gift-giving, Memoria and art patronage. Her interests also include Renaissance art and music, devotion and the history of the senses. Laura is currently researching the iconography of the Virgin connected to music and Marian devotion, with a special focus on the relationship between the sacred and the profane in the iconography of the Virgin in  the garden.

Research Assistant - Patrick McMahon
Patrick is a Music Undergraduate at the University of Sheffield, and is currently completing his final year. Patrick participates to the project through the SURE scheme. After studying a Renaissance Music module with Dr Tim Shephard, Patrick produced an essay on the attribution of emotional effects with modes, and has since contributed towards the research project ‘Stupid Midas: Visualising Musical Musical Judgement and Moral Judgement in Italy ca.1520.' His contribution here will result in him being named co-author alongside Dr Shephard in a published book, and he is now beginning work on his final year dissertation on satyrs and music in Renaissance art.