Dr. Carmen Belmonte

Associate Scholar

Carmen Belmonte is a postdoctoral researcher at the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz. Her research focuses on the visual culture and legacy of Italian colonialism and fascism, as well as on the history and theory of cultural heritage after natural disasters.

She received her Ph.D. in Art History from the University of Udine (2017). During her doctoral studies, she was a visiting student at the European University Institute in Fiesole, Florence (2016), a Ph.D. candidate in the Swiss Doctoral Program in Civiltà Italiana at the University of Lugano (2013–2016), and she held a fellowship from the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research (MIUR). She previously studied at the University of Calabria (B.A. 2004, M.A. 2007) and at the University of Pisa ("Diploma di Specializzazione" in Art History, 2011). At the LARTTE LAB of the Scuola Normale Superiore she was a research fellow within the project Osservatorio delle politiche per il patrimonio culturale (2009–2011).

At the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz she was a Wissenshaftliche Assistentin (2012–2015) and starting from 2014, she co-developed together with Gerhard Wolf and Elisabetta Scirocco the ongoing project Storia dell'arte e catastrofi: L'Italia sismica. As part of this project she co-led the group L'Aquila as a Post-Catastrophe City and curated the exhibition Photography and Catastrophe. Antonio Di Cecco in dialogue with the collections of the Photo Library.

Carmen was awarded several postdoctoral fellowships from international research institutions, including the Bibliotheca Hertziana – Max-Planck-Institut for Art History (2017–2018), the American Academy in Rome (2018–2019), and the Italian Academy at the Columbia University, New York (2020). Since 2019 she is an external lecturer in Modern and Contemporary Art History at the University of Florence. She published her research in international peer review volumes and journals, and organized the conference A Difficult Heritage: The Afterlife of Fascist-Era Architecture, Monuments, and Works of Art in Italy (11–12 March 2019, Bibliotheca Hertziana, American Academy in Rome.


  • Italian art, illustration, and photography between nineteenth and twentieth centuries
  • Visual strategies and transmediality in nineteenth century colonial propaganda
  • Visuality and cultural politics in Fascist Italy
  • Fascist and colonial legacy in Italy
  • History and theory of conservation and restoration
  • Cultural heritage and natural disasters

Storia dell'arte e catastrofi (I): L'Italia sismica (sta-sis)

Fascist-Era Artefacts in Italy: From Iconoclasm to Critical Preservation

Arte e colonialismo in Italia tra Otto e Novecento. Dinamiche politiche e strategie visive nella prima Guerra d'Africa


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