Civita Institute Fellows

Since 1985 the Civita Institute has funded the creative explorations of local Northwest designers and artists on an annual basis. Below is a lineage of this work, documenting the breadth of the program and the variety of inspiration and discovery offered in this cultural exchange.

2015

Astra Zarina Fellowship
Margo and David Aspholm

Civita Institute Fellowship
Plamena Milusheva & Choong Ng

2014

Astra Zarina Fellowship
Stephanie Bower

Civita Institute Fellowships
Thomas Allsopp
Donald Stewart

2013

Astra Zarina Fellowship
David Boyd
Trained as an architect/urban designer at MIT and the University of Washington, Dave has worked as a consultant and in the public sector. Building on his work from the 1984 Italian Hilltowns Program, Dave will return to Civita to document the remarkable group of properties assembled by Astra Zarina and Tony Heywood and its evolution in the 50+ years of restoration under their ownership.   

Civita Institute Fellowship
Anita Lehmann
Anita, an architect, artist, and teacher created a lesson book that illustrates a visual note taking process for architectural and urban design elements. The book will be used to instruct others on the essential elements of design drawing, with evocative and depictive concepts.   

Dan Shaw
Dan will explore how topography shapes culture, food production, and livable density through a series of drawings which will be part hybrid art-piece, diagrams, and technical drawings. 

2012

Astra Zarina Fellowship
Sharon Mentyka
​Sharon is a graphic designer and writer practicing in Seattle. During her fellowship, Sharon worked on a series of storytelling maps, using visual means to create an 'atlas' designed to envision Civita through multiple lenses, some of which might include culture, geography, food, history and the built environment. The visual results of her fellowship and her contemporaneous notes can be found on her design blog.

Liza Mickle
Liza is a planner and historic program specialist for the City of Portland. Liza investigated adaptive reuse in Civita and the surrounding region, while researching Italian strategies and approaches to older buildings in the hope of finding commonalities that will be useful to her ongoing work.   

Don Fels
Don is a Seattle artist, writer and teacher whose fellowship was focused on pursuing his interest in the relationship between commodity production, culture and landscape, with a particular focus on alum and its historic role in the area nearby Civita.   

Isabel Sitkov
Isabel used her fellowship to research native plants and herbs in the Civita area and investigate how those plants have been managed in a public space and the applicability of that management to community participation.   

2011

Amanda Sturgeon
Amanda investigated the enduring qualities of beauty, spirit and sustainability in the Civita region, with the goal of incorporating her findings as part of the "Living Building Challenge" of the International Living Building Institute.   

Kit Coty
Kit built on her work as a graduate student in Art History at the University of Washington, Kit continued her study of the iconography of the “grotesque” in Italian gardens.   

Jonathan Hartung
Jonathan is an architect and Principal at SHKS Architects in Seattle. His practice is focused on the renovation and re-use of existing buildings throughout the Pacific Northwest. During his fellowship, he drew in pencil and watercolor, documenting Civita in fragments, as wel as using the opportunity to graphically explore other urban areas in Italy.   

Betty Merken
Betty is an artist, an architectural colorist, and an educator. During her two month fellowship in Civita she researched and documented the colors and light of Civita and over a dozen additional Italian Hill towns, creating a visual narrative of differences and similarities in their use of color.   

Jon Gentry and Lauren Walker
Jon and Lauren Walker are Seattle architects whose fellowship project explored an alternative and parallel universe in Civita, using "biocentric collages" - visionary tales of several non-human species and their imagined lives in Civita, graphically presented.    

2010

Robert Zimmer
A Seattle-based architect for the past 25 years, Robert Zimmer is a founding partner of zimmerraystudios. His work is diverse in size, type and location for clients in Seattle, the Pacific Northwest, the Desert Southwest, as well as nationally and internationally. In a joint-fellowship with architecture photographer Lara Swimmer, they systematically photo-documented Civita's streets and surrounding landscapes. Their carefully catalogued photographs will be manipulated into a translation of Civita mapping multiple layers of data. Their collaboration will result in an artistic expression that illustrates the interplay between Civita's unique topography, built environment and human history.  website 

Lara Swimmer
Lara Swimmer is a Seattle-based architecture photographer who travels on assignment nationally, and whose work appears regularly in Metropolis, Architectural Record, Interior Design, NW Home, Residential Architect & LUXE. She has devoted much of her early career to documenting major civic building and renovation projects in the Puget Sound area, and while in Civita, had a joint fellowship with her husband, architect Robert Zimmer, to document and create a photographic mapping of the town and its surroundings. For full portfolio visit www.swimmerphoto.com or her assignment blog: www.facebook.com/laraswimmerphotography.  website 

Perri Lynch
Perri Lynch is a Seattle-based artist and member of the Seattle Phonographer's Union. Her work examines the relationship between human perception and sense of place. Through combined techniques in sound, light, sculpture, and image, Perri's work explores multiple attributes of a place simultaneously. This Fellowship is devoted to documenting sound as a spatial force in the landforms and architecture of Civita and surroundings. Field recordings, video and photographs will be gathered as source material for public art, paintings, and live performances in the Pacific Northwest upon return.  website 

Jennifer Milliron
MiLa is a collaboration of urban activism by Jennifer Milliron and Edward Lalonde which originated through a series of architectural investigation of various city conditions.  Jennifer is a designer at NBBJ in Seattle and holds a Master of Advanced Architecture from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Architecture from Washington State University.  Prior to returning to the Pacific Northwest, she lived in New York City where she worked for Daniel Libeskind on large urban projects. VERTICAL CITY: SEATTLE a joint project for Civita by Jennifer Milliron and Edward Lalonde, examines the distressed pedestrian condition at the city's urban core.  Specifically, this project is a critical analysis of how Seattle's growth and historic Master Plan has superimposed itself upon a place of extreme natural topography to create a challenging urban condition at the human scale.  Our architectural proposal offers solutions based upon research and case studies here in Seattle and abroad in Civita di Bagnoregio.   

Edward Lalonde
MiLa is a collaboration of urban activism by Jennifer Milliron and Edward Lalonde which originated through a series of architectural investigation of various city conditions.  Edward is an Associate at Olson Kundig Architects in Seattle and holds a Master of Advanced Architecture from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Architecture from Washington State University.  Prior to returning to the Pacific Northwest, he lived in New York City where he worked for Steven Holl on several utopian urban projects. Jennifer Milliron and Edward Lalonde's joint project for Civita, entitled VERTICAL CITY: SEATTLE examines the distressed pedestrian condition at the city's urban core.  Specifically, this project is a critical analysis of how Seattle's growth and historic Master Plan has superimposed itself upon a place of extreme natural topography to create a challenging urban condition at the human scale.  Our architectural proposal offers solutions based upon research and case studies here in Seattle and abroad in Civita di Bagnoregio.   

Gabriela Denise Frank
Gabriela Denise Frank is a Seattle writer engaged in the exploration and storytelling of great urban places. During her two month fellowship, she studied the layers where people, architecture, food, language, time, and culture meet to create Civita's story. Drawing on her daily blog entries as source material, she will publish a book of essays about her experience in January 2011.  website 

Lesley Bain
Lesley Bain is an architect and urban designer, and a principal at Weinstein A|U. As a NIAUSI Fellow, she studied the "intimate streetscapes" of Civita and other Italian towns. These human-scaled streets provide an inspiration for reconsidering how we use public rights-of-way and alleys, and for finding new opportunities for pedestrian routes in Northwest cities. She is currently working on a book on streets, and will incorporate some of the ideas generated in Italy.   

2009

Betty Torrell
Betty Torrell is a Seattle architect. During her residency in Italy, she studied "Hearth as Home", an architectural and cultural analysis of more than fifty historic hearths located in Civita di Bagnoregio. This study was the first comprehensive documentation of this central feature of the historic houses and public cooking spaces of Civita. Betty was also a past student of AIR 1975 and IHT 1976, and a program assistant for IHT 1979.   

Clair Enlow
During her two month Fellowship in Civita, journalist Clair Enlow focused on Italian approaches to modern interventions in historic sites, considering both the decision making processes and the ensuing results. Clair received additional support from the American Academy in Rome, and her investigations encompassed locales in both Lazio and Umbria.   

2007–2008

Kristian Kofoed
Kristian Kofoed is an urban planner, attorney, photographer and art critic. While in Civita, Kristian explored and documented transitional edges - the interfaces between the historic built environment and recent building, between inhabited space and uninhabited space, as well as the physical edge conditions at Civita itself and their implications for the town and its future.   

Bill Hook
Bill Hook has been one of the foremost architectural illustrators in the Northwest for over 20 years. While in Civita, he experimented with different ways of observing and communicating the built environment, and of conveying a sense of place, through mixed media drawings done on-site in this remarkable Italian Hilltown.  website 

Ann Hirschi
Ann Hirschi is a graduate of UW's Architecture in Rome and Hilltown programs and has been working as an arborist in the Seattle area, after practicing architecture for many years. She helps steer Green Footprints Action Works, implementing forest and wetland restoration projects in her Madison Valley neighborhood. During her fellowship in Civita she studied the ancient Chestnut grove in the valley adjacent to Civita, looking at its history, its meaning to the residents, and how community stewardship of the grove has evolved over time. She is currently a NIAUSI board member. www.greenfootprintsactionworks.org  website 

2006

Miriam Ginsberg
Miriam Ginsberg was selected as a NIAUSI fellow in 2006. She is a graduate of SCI-Arc in Los Angeles. Miriam is currently working as an architectural designer for the Clark Design Group and has experience in both carpentry and design. Miriam is "intrigued by the way buildings remember their occupants." Through a series of journal entries, letters, and drawings (including the creation of a remarkable 20 foot scroll) Miriam documented various aspects of life, death and rebirth that take place in Civita.   

Alan Maskin
Alan Maskin is a principal architect at Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen Architects where he has worked for 15 years. Alan has also taught architectural design at Syracuse University and the University of Washington. His primary work has been museum and exhibition projects, including the Frye Art Museum in Seattle, designed with Rick Sundberg. Alan studied with Astra Zarina in U.W's Architecture In Rome Program in 1986 and returned to Italy with a NIAUSI fellowship in 2006. Alan's trip to Civita provided a chance to pick up threads of work and thought that he had started 20 years ago in his student work - but this time returning as a professional - analyzing historical layers, spaces and architectural relationships through pencil, ink and mixed media, including PowerPoint manipulations.   

Dan Corson
Dan Corson is a visual artist working in the public realm. His public artworks can be found in State Capital buildings, city parks, light rail stations, city halls, as well as the more intimate settings of interpretive centers and meditation chambers. His passion is creating immersive environments that viscerally effect the viewer; which clearly led to his interest in exploring constrained spaces. While in Civita, he explored and documented the caves, cisterns, grottos and other subterranean spaces in and around Civita. Through a series of stop action movies, photographic light boxes, he hopes to share his understanding of these haunting spaces.  website 

2005

James Harrison
As an artist, James investigated the types of masonry based on the actions of making: stacking, spanning, turning, rebuilding, filling, etc.   

2004

Mary Ann Peters
Mary Ann was a resident fellow and is an artist who explored the ways that imagery is integrated into architecture, particularly within the fresco tradition, and to compared these observations to similar examples in non-Western cultures.  website 

2003

M. J. Anderson
M J is an artist who researched the placement of the architectural niche as it provides intimate emotional content to the fabric of village life.  website 

Cory Crocker
Cory was a resident fellow who analyzed factors that have contributed to Civita's timeless inhabitability: local climate, integration of building and site, regional materials, vernacular technologies, and formal qualities. He is an architectural designer and sustainability consultant.   

2000

Jeff Joslin
An Urban Planner for the City of Portland, Jeff studied urban environments in Florence and Tuscany by exploring the interweaving of human activity and the built environment in a comparative context with cities of the Pacific Northwest. He is currently the Director of Current Planning for the City of San Francisco.   

1997

Lorna Jordan
Lorna is an artist who studied the Italian garden as a theater for ideas and experiences at the nexus of nature and culture. Her findings are incorporated into her environmental art projects within the Pacific Northwest and beyond.  website 

Valerio Cruciani
Valerio was an Italian scholar.   

1996

Sue Partridge
Sue is an architect who investigated the historical context and contemporary uses of public and government buildings in Rome.   

Iole Alessandrini
Iole Alessandrini is an architect and artist. Her Fellowship supported a presentation at the Seattle Art Museum of Art in the Park, a case study project on natural light and digital media as a result of her Post Professional Master Program at the University of Washington. She is Civita Institute President (2016-18). More: Art in the Park

1995

Kenichi Nakano
A landscape architect, Kenichi studied and recorded the quality of streetscape and open space connections in Rome. Observations to be incorporated in a Seattle case study using the Pine Street Corridor.   

1994

Judy Anderson
Judy is an artist who, with the architect Philip Helms Cook, planned to design and produce a published work which expresses the vitality of particular urban spaces in historic Rome and how it translates to Seattle.   

Lisa Ronchi
Lisa is an artist & architect who presented an historic overview of Women in Architecture in Italy, with focus on projects from her own practice and others from renowned architectural offices in Europe.   

1993

Joan Stuart Ross
Joan, formerly Joan Ross Bloedel, is an artist who created new art works using the unique inspiration of color, light and layered texture of the Roman environment; displayed these works and shared what she has learned with architects, urban designers and students.  website 

1992

Carolyn Geise
Carolyn is an architect who studied densely populated neighborhoods - how people live, with emphasis on how they use open spaces as a social environment.   

Ellen Sollod
Ellen is an artist who studied and recorded the relationship of the built and natural environments and the activities which take place in them.  website 

1991

Tony Mazzella
Tony is a planner who studied the community planning process and its relationship to the development and protection of the built environment on the island of Procida in the Bay of Naples.   

1990

Denise Johnson Hunt
Denise was an architect who explored multi-family housing patterns in the neighborhoods surrounding Rome's historic core.   

Don Brubeck
Don is an architect who looked at design ideas with special focus on the technical, aesthetic and philosophical challenges of remodeling existing historic structures.   

Lynn Shimamoto
Lynn is an architect who looked at design ideas with special focus on the technical, aesthetic and philosophical challenges of remodeling existing historic structures.   

1989

Beliz Brother
Beliz is a conceptual artist and set designer who studied current theater design in the European tradition of the 'theater of images' as abstract expressions of emotion and narrative ideas.   

Nancy Hammer
Nancy is a landscape architect and public artist investigated the integration of architecture, landscape form, and sculpture; concentrated on the relationship between buildings, people and art and the places they inhabit.   

1988

Catherine Barrett
Catherine is an architect who studied street vistas of Rome, including monuments and portals; planned to publish a book of drawings as a record of her study.   

Rysia Suchecka
Rysia is an interior designer who studied how old Roman interiors are transformed to fit modern needs, including technical and aesthetic aspects; shared her findings through teaching, lectures, and articles in professional journals.   

1987

Richard Unterman
Richard is a landscape architect who conducted a comparative study of old and new mixed-use housing in Rome and its environs, expanding on Gordon Cullen's book, TOWNSCAPE; incorporated their conclusions into the UW Urban Design Program and in professional journals.   

Gail Elnicky
Gail is a landscape architect who conducted a comparative study of old and new mixed-use housing in Rome and its environs, expanding on Gordon Cullen's book, TOWNSCAPE; incorporated their conclusions into the UW Urban Design Program and in professional journals.   

Ellen Ziegler
Ellen is an artist and graphic designer who focused on the role of water features and fountains and the lives of Roman citizens; used her observations in her work in the Pacific Northwest, a region with strong ties to water.   

1986

Diana Painter
Diana is a transit planner who studied how various Roman streets and public spaces have been adapted to changing uses over time; published results of this work in ARCADE magazine and at a national transportation symposium.   

Robert Wagoner
Robert is an architect who studied the adaptation of older buildings for new commercial uses; produced an illustrated resource book for designers working in the Pacific Northwest.   

Arne Bystrom
Arne is an architect who studied the uses of wood in Roman construction to enrich the Northwest's architectural heritage of wood.   

1985

David Hoedemaker
David is an architect who explored Italy's lessons in urbanism as a model for the Pacific Northwest.   

Rebecca Barnes
Rebecca is an urban designer who studied the role of public open space in Rome; edited an issue of ARCADE based on this research.   

Stuart Silk
Stuart is an architect who studied the idea of procession in architecture; recorded impressions in a series of paintings.