My research breaks down into a few distinct areas. First, my period of research of early modern painting and drawing. Centered mostly on the Italian peninsula and the period after the Council of Trent, I am interested in the ways in which images were put to new uses due to religious demands, and the way in which the art functioned as a kind of visual technology.

My interest in Rudolf Arnheim and the psychology of art has resulted in a book and numerous papers. I am focalizing this work into a new discipline, cognitive iconology, which is a delimited area of study of the psychological contribution toward the image's meaning. All of this research is informed of critical realist, that is, a philosophical stance toward the world (realism) that situates its knowledge production in social, interested labor (critical). The main protagonist of this thought of Roy Bhaskar but I have made a special study of Maurice Mandelbaum.

Federico Barocci/Early Modern Painting

  • (with John Marciari) "A Newly Reattributed Painting by Francesco Vanni in Malta," Melita Historica 16 (2012).
  • "Due varieta' in se: Practices of Engagement in Bronzino's Portraits," Source 30 (2011): 26-32.
  • (with John Marciari) "Grande quanto l'opera: Scale and Function in Barocci's Drawings," Master Drawings 46 (2008): 289-321. 
  • "Federico Barocci invented Light and Color," Source 26 (2007): 18-23.
  • "Barocci, Cartoons, and the Workshop: A Mechanical Means for Satisfying Demand," Notizie da Palazzo Albani 34/35 (2005/2006): 101-124 (published 2007).
  • "Three Cartoon Fragments for Barocci's Madonna di San Simone," Master Drawings 41 (2003): 378-383. 
  • "The Apostasy of Michelangelo in a Painting by Federico Barocci," Source 22 (2003): 27-34.
  • "Federico Barocci, Federico Borromeo and the Oratorian Orbit," Renaissance Quarterly 56 (2003); 56-87.


  • “Francesco Paciotti, Military Architecture, and the European Geopolitics,” Renaissance Studies 24 (2010): 1-22.
  • "A Classification of Perceptual Corrections of Perspective Distortions in Renaissance Painting," Perception 39 (2010): 677-694.
  • "Between Presence and Perspective: The Portrait-in-a-Picture in Early Modern Painting," Zeitschrift für Kunstgeschichte 71 (2008): 513-526.
  • “Tacit Skills in the Perspective Treatise of the Late Renaissance,” in Karl Enenkel and Wolfgang Neubehr, eds., Cognition and the Book (Intersections: Yearbook of Early Modern Studies) (Leiden: Brill, 2005.
  • “The Embodied Perspective Viewer and its Implications for Semiotics,” in Winfried Nöth, ed., Körper, Verkörperung, Entkörperung (Kassel: Universität Kassel, 2004).

Historiography/Philosophy of History

Rudolf Arnheim/Psychology of Art/Aesthetics

Critical Realism/Theory/Philosophy

  • "Dispositional Realism and the Specificity of Digital Media," Leonardo 47 (2014): 167-171.
  • A Realist Theory of Art History (London: Routledge, 2013). 
  • "Is William Epstein a Gestalt Psychologist?" Gestalt Theory 34 (2012): 179-190.
  • “Teoria della gestalt, enattivismo, e la rettorica di ‘realismo,’” in Fiorenza Toccafondi, ed. Fenomenologia e scienza. Punti d'incontro passati e presenti (Firenze, Le Lettere, 2012), 244-278.
  • Maurice Mandelbaum and American Critical Realism (London: Routledge, 2010). 
  • “Mona Lisa's Smile: The Place of Experimental Phenomenology within Gestalt Theory.” Gestalt Theory 27:2 (2005): 91-106.
  • "Campo, Forze, Singularità: Prospetti per la spiegazione arnheimiana del ordine percettuale," in Lucia Pizzo Russo, ed., Rudolf Arnheim: Arte e Percezione Visiva (Palermo: Aesthetica Preprint, 2005).
  • "Gestalt Psychologists on the Gestalt-Switch," Il Cannocchiale: Rivista di studi filosofici 2 (2001): 3-9.
  • "Maurice Mandelbaum as a Gestalt Philosopher," Gestalt Theory 20 (2000): 46-58.