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In my recent statement on Brexit, I said that ‘The Warburg owes its academic mission to the movement of people, collections and ideas across national borders.’ Such movements have marked the Institute’s history from the start, and they remain central to the values and activities that drive our work—above all on Aby Warburg himself.
At the end of last term, Warburg’s three lectures on Leonardo da Vinci (written during his years in Florence) made their debut in London—120 years after they were given as his first public lectures in Hamburg. On 16th December Aby Warburg’s grandson John Prag performed the last of the lectures to a rapt audience, who also enjoyed the small exhibition curated by our MA students. The full English translation, supported by the Italian Embassy as part of their celebrations marking the 500th anniversary of Leonardo’s death, is available at the Institute or on our website.
We are now looking ahead to April, when Warburg’s original working materials for his legendary Bilderatlas Mnemosyne will return to Germany for two exhibitions at Berlin’s Haus der Kulturen der Welt and Gemäldegalerie. The entire atlas (with nearly 1,000 images on more than 60 panels, mapping cultural memory across time and space) will be reconstructed in its entirety for the first time since 1929; and to mark the occasion we will be publishing a new facsimile edition—the first in colour, in English and in extra-large format. If you are in Berlin between the beginning of April and the end of June do be sure to visit this once-in-a-lifetime display.
Finally, as momentum gathers for our Warburg Renaissance project, we are pleased to be building on the long-standing support of our American Friends by rolling out the Institute’s first programme for Friends in the UK and around the world—a truly global community.
Professor Bill Sherman


China Academy of Art: Mind, Art, Value

On 28-30 October 2019, the China Academy of Art in Hangzhou held the Gombrich Memorial Conference titled Mind, Art, Value where Professor Bill Sherman gave the Gombrich Memorial Lectures on The Reader’s Eye. The conference featured other distinguished scholars such as Leonie Gombrich, Yiqiang Cao, Sir Nicholas Penny, Carlo Ginzburg and Partha Mitter. Professor Paul Taylor also delivered a Warburg intensive seminar to attendees called An Introduction to Iconography. This was a fantastic opportunity to build on Gombrich’s legacy of disseminating Warburgian ideas in China and it is evidence for the passionate interest in the Institute and our work around the world.

Since the 1980s, when his works were translated into Chinese by the China Academy of Art, Chinese artists and scholars have been fascinated by Sir Ernst Gombrich’s work and each year celebrate his life and impact with the Memorial Conference. In fact, shortly after his death, a large part of Gombrich’s private library was donated to China Academy of Art and currently, their Gombrich Library holds 5,000 volumes of materials and books as well as possessions, such as his typewriter. We are looking forward to further collaborations with the China Academy of Art in the future and continuing to influence students, scholars and institutions across the world.
Graduation - 6 December 2019

We were delighted to celebrate graduation with the class of 2019 on Friday 6 December. Congratulations to all our MA and PhD students who completed their studies in the 2018-19 academic year and we wish them all the best in their future endeavours.

Graduation was extra special for the Institute this year because we had the privilege of nominating the Honorary Graduand for 2019, Professor Roger Chartier, Paris and UPenn (pictured below with our students and faculty after the ceremony). Along with an inspiring speech at the graduation ceremony, Professor Chartier also held a Masterclass for postgraduate students on 'The Book as Body, The Life as Editions. From Quevedo to Machado de Assis' and a public lecture entitled 'Between Cultural History and History of the Book'. Listen to the lecture here.
The Warburg Institute in Hamburg

In November, a trip to Hamburg allowed us to connect with the Institute’s origins and celebrate a momentous occasion in our history. On November 25, Professor Bill Sherman had the honour of giving the annual Warburg lecture on Aby Warburg and the Renaissance of the Library. The lecture was held at Warburg-Haus the original site of Aby Warburg’s Library featuring an elliptical Reading Room which is an inspiration for the Warburg Renaissance project.

This was followed, on November 28, by a dinner to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Eric Warburg and the University of London signing the Trust Deed granting the Warburg Institute to the University to maintain and preserve Aby Warburg’s legacy. This special event was attended by members of the Warburg family and close friends, and hosted by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, who have played a considerable role in the Institute’s future with the generous lead donation of £1m towards the Warburg Renaissance.

The Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg also marked the occasion with a letter of thanks to Professor Rick Rylance, the Dean for the University’s School of Advanced Study where the Institute sits, for ‘conserving and continuing a timeless world of thought, books and images assembled by Aby Warburg, which had lost their spiritual home in Hamburg.’


"There is no other place like this. Even if you are not studying something that is strictly related to the Institute, the support and resources available are something that you can’t find anywhere else." 

Sarah Coviello, MA and PhD Student
New Funding Opportunities
For the academic year 2020-21, we are delighted to be able to offer an expanded range of scholarships thanks to the goodwill of past and present donors to the Warburg Institute.
MA/MRes Funding

Peltz Scholarships

Thanks to an increase in support from Daniel and Elizabeth Peltz, we are now able to offer four scholarships for the 2020-21 academic year. We are extremely grateful for their continued generosity and Daniel Peltz OBE said: “Our aim is to give something back to the next generation of postgraduate students and enable them to access the amazing opportunities offered by the Warburg Institute’s academic programmes.

American Friends of the Warburg Institute Scholarships

Thanks to The American Friends of the Warburg Institute, we are once again able to offer two scholarships which will cover the fees for a student from North America to study on one of our MA programmes/MRes programmes in 2020-21.

Find out more and how to apply for an MA/MRes scholarship here

Mphil/PhD Funding

Gombrich-Saxl Scholarship


The Gombrich-Saxl Scholarship is open to Home/EU students who have been offered a place on the Institute’s MPhil/PhD Programme. It will cover international fees and provide an annual £15,000 maintenance payment for a maximum of three years.

JB Trapp Scholarship

The JB Trapp Scholarship is open to international students who have been offered a place on the Institute’s MPhil/PhD Programme. It will cover international fees and provide an annual £15k maintenance payment for a maximum of three years.

Find out more and how to apply for an MPhil/PhD scholarship here

Considering postgraduate study options? Interested in studying at the Warburg?

On Thursday 19 March, prospective students can join us to learn about the programmes we offer, meet our staff and current students, discover the Institute’s collections, and find out what it’s like to study at The Warburg Institute. 

Postgraduate programmes that we offer:
  • MA, MRes and Postgraduate Certificate in Cultural, Intellectual and Visual History
  • MA in Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture
  • MRes and Postgraduate Certificate in Art History and Renaissance Culture
  • MPhil/PhD 
You can study all our programmes either part-time or full-time, and we accept distance learning applications for our MPhil/PhD programme.

Find out more and register


We are delighted to be able to offer six Short-Term Fellowships for the 2020/21 academic year.
These fellowships are funded by generous donations in memory of Frances A Yates, Greta Sondheimer, and Nikolai Rubinstein.

The aim of these awards is to provide financial support towards living and subsistence costs in London to enable scholars to undertake a period of research in intellectual, cultural or art history at the Warburg Institute. Awards are open to both early-career and experienced researchers.

Find out more and apply


2-4 April 2020: Philadelphia, USA

The Warburg is delighted to be organising a special panel titled 'Operating the Artist's Workshop: Location, Diversification, Identityat The 66th Annual Meeting of the RSA, organised and chaired by Deputy Director Michelle O'Malley, on Thursday 2 April, 2.00pm at the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown.

A number of other Warburg staff, fellows and students will also be participating throughout the conference across a wide range of subjects and formats.

Find out more


The Warburg continues its active programme of Postgraduate and Doctoral research training in 2020, with some new classes for the Summer Term, including: 

Resources and Techniques for the Study of Renaissance and Early Modern Culture

12 - 15 May 2020
By combining insights from research fields such as art history, book history, and intellectual history, with skills development across a number of areas, this is an opportunity for doctoral students to sharpen the skills needed for successful research. 

Renaissance Latin Intermediate Refresher

29 June - 3 July 2020

This course is aimed at students at intermediate level Latin. Language consolidation will be coupled with a focus on reading a range of Neo-Latin texts from the 14th to the 17th century. 

Beginners Renaissance Latin 5-Day Intensive

2 - 8 September 2020

This course is designed for beginners, and focuses on Latin texts from the 14th to the 17th century, drawing on a wide range of sources. The aim is to help students develop the ability to read primary sources in the original Latin.


" has significantly changed my approach to studies and research - perhaps even the ultimate goal of my studies..."

Summer School 2019 participant

Following on from last year's successful inaugural Warburg Institute Summer School, this year's course will take place across two independent, but complementary, weeks: 13 - 17 July and 20 - 24 July.

The two weeks will focus on the work of Aby Warburg and his picture atlas Mnemosyne, and questions around the Institute’s unique approach to the organisation of knowledge. The courses will combine lectures, discussions of readings, hands-on-work with primary materials in the Warburg Institute, and visits to relevant collections around London.

Read this blog post by Francesco Mercuri, a participant from last year’s summer school, to discover more about what the group got up to and what he took away from his time at the Institute.

Find out more


View the full events programme


Beyond Cambridge: Feasting and Fasting in London and Los Angeles


In our latest blog post, we hear from the V&A's Dr Tessa Murdoch who tells us more about the Fitzwilliam Museum’s exhibition ‘Feast & Fast: The Art of Food in Europe 1500-1800’ and some of the cookery books that are on display.


The Warburg Library Commons is our new Open Access digital repository for library collections, arranged on the themes of the Warburg Library classification system. We are launching the repository at the end of January. 
We welcome all publications related to the subject areas and collections of the library: art history, the history of literature and its transmission, the history of philosophy, religions, magic and science, and the history of society and culture in the medieval and Renaissance periods. 

Publications can include the full texts of journal articles, book chapters, books, and conference proceedings. Every deposited publication will be catalogued and classified according to the library's historic and unique classification system created by Aby Warburg. 

The site is hosted on local servers at the university and runs on Samvera software. 

We encourage you to send us your work.
We can answer your copyright queries. We will first check the Sherpa/Romeo database to comply with publishers' copyright policies on Open Access. If you already have articles on Open Access, we may be able to use those versions. We can use final typeset versions of your articles on the Commons in some circumstances, or the author's accepted version or final text before typesetting.

The Warburg Library Commons site address is or email your publications in Word (.doc) or PDF format to
Copyright © 2020 School of Advanced Study, University of London, All rights reserved.

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