Alumni News

LIFE AFTER PRATT – Meet Megan Welchel, HAD alumna!


Oh my! Major Media Outlets Cover Pratt Professor’s Work to Restore Roman Painting Buried by Volcano

A number of prominent publications, including Forbes, National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, and Archeology Magazine, have recently spotlighted the cutting-edge work of Eleonora Del Federico, professor of chemistry at Pratt Institute, and a network of scientists and researchers to restore a Roman painting in the ancient town of Herculaneum. The work was discovered in the early 20th century after being buried by soot and ash from an eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 A.D that led Herculaneum to suffer the same fate as Pompeii, which is located nearby.


Del Federico worked with a team that included Pratt School of Liberal Arts and Sciences faculty member Cindie Kehlet, professor in the department of Math and Science, and Pratt alumnae Haerin Kang, (B.A. Fine Arts ’17) and Megan Welchel (B.A. History of Art and Design ’07), who also serves as Math and Science Lab Technician at Pratt. The coverage has focused on how the team used a portable machine provided by XGLab, that allowed them to scan the painting, a portrait of a Roman woman, using a new type of high resolution X-ray technology.


In 2015, X-rays revealed a hidden figure in Rembrandt’s An Old Man in Military Costume. Scans of the abstract painter’s famous pieces revealed he sometimes used common house paints, rather than more pricey art oils, making him one of the first artists to do so.

The technique, which reveals how stunning the original painting was and gives information on materials and processes used to create it, could help conservators to more precisely restore the image as well as other ancient artworks.

“By unraveling the details of wall paintings that are no longer visible to the naked eye, we are in essence bringing these ancient people back to life,” Del Federico said in a press release. She believes that by learning about the quality and sophistication of a painting, characteristics such as the aspects of social life could be revealed.

Source : Sarah Gibbens , National Geographic

Read the articles in Forbes, Smithsonian Magazine, Archeology Magazine, and Sci-News.

Images: Courtesy of Roberto Alberti


M.S. HAD/M.F.A. Alumna Adele Rossetti Morosini Awarded Fullbright Grant

Adele Rosseti Morosini has recently been awarded a Fulbright grant to travel to Rio de Janeiro this August. While in Brazil, Adele will be making scientific drawings and full color paintings to document endangered plant species of the Atlantic Forest. Among these will be illustrations for the publication of the Brazilian IUCN Red List. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) is the world’s main authority on the conservation status of species.
This travel grant and research will be a collaboration with the Brazilian Ministry of the Environment and the Botanical Garden of Rio de Janeiro. The images she creates will aid in the dissemination of scientific information about these plants internationally, in their visual identification and in their conservation.
Adele is and alumna of both the M.S. HA&D/M.F.A, and Pratt in Venice programs. Congratulations, Adele!


MS graduate to present at the Colours 2015 Conference

Our 2013 MS graduate, Katelin Fallon, will be a presenter with professors Elenora Del Federico and Cindie Kehlet, at the conference Colours 2015: Bridging Science with Art at Évora University from 24 to 26 September. Her talk, “Reconstruction of Wall Paintings at Herculaneum”, is based on her thesis and describes how two of the reconstruction paintings from the House of the Neptune and Amphitrite Mosaic were created.

A Demonstration and Discussion with Tim Hawkinson


Artifex Press and Tim Hawkinson are pleased to announce the publication of Tim Hawkinson’s digital catalogue raisonné. To mark the public launch of this catalogue, the New York Public Library hosts a discussion between Tim Hawkinson; Hannah Barton, Editor of the Tim Hawkinson catalogue raisonné; and Peggy Fogelman, Acting Director of the Morgan Library and Museum, on March 10, 2015, at 6PM (doors open at 5:30PM). An introduction by David Grosz, President of Artifex Press, opens the event.

The event features a demonstration of the catalogue, an in-depth look at the breadth of Hawkinson’s career, and an exploration of the collaborative formation of the publication. The Tim Hawkinson catalogue raisonné is the latest example of Artifex Press’s “living catalogues raisonnés,” the publisher’s new take on this essential, authoritative artist catalogue, which documents in real time the most up-to-date incarnation of an artist’s complete body of work.

 To see the full New York Public Library event announcement, click here.

 This event is free and open to the public.

 March 10, 2015, 6-8 PM

New York Public Library

Stephen A. Schwarzman Building

South Court Auditorium

5th Ave at 42nd St, New York, NY 10018

Alumna Katie Blake Curated Barnard College Zine Collection, Edits Catalog

Katie Blake, who graduated from the MS program last year is now working remotely from Alaska with Barnard College to edit their zine collection catalog.

In spring 2014 Blake curated and designed an exhibition of Barnard College’s zine collection called “ReVision: Zines and Collage, an exhibit” during an internship there. The exhibition can be viewed online here.


Joseph Kopta, Pratt Alumnus, Recently Delivered a Paper on Byzantine Lectionaries

Joseph Kopta (BFA/MS, ’10) is a Ph.D. student in the department of Art History at Temple University. He recently delivered a paper, “Καὶ τὸ φῶς ἐν τῇ σκοτίᾳ φαίνει : Color in Byzantine Gospel Lectionaries,” at the 2014 Graduate Student Conference on Byzantine Studies at the Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture in Boston, Massachusetts.

The Jaharis Gospel Lectionary, fol. 3r: Opening page of the Gospel of John. Constantinople, ca. 1100. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (2007.286).
The Jaharis Gospel Lectionary, fol. 3r: Opening page of the Gospel of John. Constantinople, ca. 1100. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (2007.286).; Inset: Joseph Kopta at The Cloisters

Alumna Update: Gumpel will be speaking at the Southeastern College Conference in November

Emily Gumpel who graduated in February 2013 will be in the session called Focus: Revealing A Single Work for the 2013 SECAC Conference meeting in Greensboro, NC, October 30-November 2, 2013She will be talking about her thesis: “The Exaltation of the Slum: Manet’s Modern Interpretation of Piety and Sensuality.” The session will be chaired by James Boyles and Arthur Marks.

Alumni Update: Stephanie Wooster

Stephanie Wooster is a 2003 MFA/MS alum. She will
graduate from The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. in
May 2013 with a Masters of Professional Studies (M.P.S.) degree in
paralegal studies with specializations in international law and
intellectual property law. She is currently an intern at an intellectual
property law firm called Gardner, Linn, Burkhart & Flory, LLP in the
greater Grand Rapids, Michigan area. She is also working on a master’s
thesis that argues for the fair use defense for appropriation artists
(like Sherrie Levine, Jeff Koons, and so forth) using the recent
“Patrick Cariou v. Richard Prince” 2011 case as a foundation for her
argument. She was also recently chosen by The George Washington University
for inclusion into the prestigious Golden Key International Honour

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