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Reko Rennie and Angela Valamanesh to take part in prestigious Rome residency

Two celebrated Australian artists have been announced as the latest recipients of the Mordant Family/Australia Council Affiliated Fellowship at the American Academy in Rome.

Reko Rennie is a renowned interdisciplinary artist who explores his First Nations identity through contemporary media. The fellowship will enable him to spend two months in residence at the Academy, during which he plans to research marble sculpture for future works. He will also travel to Carrara to speak with local artisans.

Angela Valamanesh is a leading Australian ceramicist and will use the residency to research early Roman ceramics, including mosaics, votive offerings and functional objects.

The fellowship is made possible through the generous support of the Mordant family. On behalf of the Mordant family, Simon Mordant AO said:

“We are delighted to extend this opportunity to two more exemplary Australian artists – including, for the first time, a First Nations recipient. Reko Rennie has already achieved considerable recognition within Australia and internationally with his dynamic and provocative work.

Angela Valamanesh is also a highly experienced and established artist whose intriguing and highly personal work has traversed a number of mediums over more than four decades. We look forward to seeing what they will produce, drawing on the world-class resources of the American Academy,” he said.

Rennie and Valamanesh are the fifth and sixth recipients of this opportunity. Previous recipients include Barbara Campbell, Alex Seton, Jenny Watson and Lynne Roberts Goodwin.

Australia Council CEO Adrian Collette AM said:

“This residency offers a unique opportunity for Australian artists to extend their international networks and to further develop their practice, with access to a wealth of history and resources at the American Academy in Rome. We thank the Mordant family for their continued support.”

Established in 1894, the American Academy in Rome is the oldest American overseas centre for independent study and advanced research in the arts and humanities.

Through the Affiliated Fellowship Program, artists and scholars from all over the world have the opportunity to pursue their work in an inspiring, collaborative and supportive environment, with accommodation and studio space provided in an historic building on the Janiculum Hill.

More information on partnerships and co-investment with the Australia Council is available on our website.



Brianna Roberts


(02) 9215 9030


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