Irene Romano

Professor, Anthropology

Arizona State Museum North, Room 316

About Irene Romano

Archaeologist Irene Romano holds a joint appointment as Professor of Art History in the School of Art and Professor of Anthropology in the School of Anthropology at the University of Arizona. She also has an affiliated appointment in the Department of Religious Studies and Classics and is the Curator of Mediterranean Archaeology in the Arizona State Museum of the University of Arizona. From 2012 to 2015 she held the administrative appointment of Deputy Director of the Arizona State Museum. She teaches courses on plundered art, cultural heritage issues, museum studies, as well as on ancient art and archaeology of the Mediterranean region.

Dr. Romano earned her Ph.D. in Classical Archaeology from the University of Pennsylvania. She has more than 30 years of experience as a teacher and museum professional, holding many positions, including as registrar, curator, researcher, consultant, and coordinator of the collections' division at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology in Philadelphia. Dr. Romano moved to the University of Arizona in 2012 from a position she held for six years as Executive Director of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens.

She is the author or co-author of seven books as well as numerous articles on ancient Mediterranean collections, Greek and Roman sculpture, pottery, terracotta figurines, Greek cult practice, and marble provenance studies. She has extensive archaeological field experience in Greece, Spain, Italy, and Turkey, and has worked with scholars from many countries on international research and museum projects. Her current research is focused on the fate of antiquities in the Nazi era, in collaboration with German and American scholars and inspired by her participation in the German-American Provenance Research Exchange Program (PREP) in 2018. In addition, Dr. Romano is preparing a monograph on a marble portrait of Alexander the Great from Beth Shean (Israel). 


Selected Publications


1980. Early Greek Cult Images, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Pennsylvania. Distributed by University of Michigan Microfilms, Ann Arbor.

1995, reprinted 2003. Jointly with Keith DeVries, David G. Romano, Yelena Stolyarik, and Donald White, The Ancient Greek World, University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, Philadelphia.

1995. The Terracotta Figurines and Related VesselsGordion Special Studies, Vol. II, University of Pennsylvania Museum, Philadelphia. (peer-reviewed)

1999. Jointly with David Gilman Romano, Catalogue of the Classical Collections of the Glencairn Museum, Bryn Athyn, PA.

2002. Jointly with Donald White, Ann Blair Brownlee, and Jean MacIntosh Turfa, Guide to the Etruscan and Roman Worlds at the University of Pennsylvania Museum, Philadelphia.

2006. Classical Sculpture: Catalogue of the Cypriot, Greek, and Roman Stone Sculpture CollectionUniversity of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, Philadelphia. (peer-reviewed)

2018. Co-editor and co-author with Gianfranco Adornato, Gabriella Cirucci, and Alessandro Poggio, Re-staging Greek Artworks in Roman Times. Proceedings of the International Colloquium at the Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa, April 3-4, 2014. Milano: LED Edizioni Universitarie. (peer-reviewed articles)  

ARTICLES AND REVIEWS 2012-2022                                       

2012. First author, jointly with Scott Pike and Elaine Gazda, “The Use and Symbolism of Pentelic Marble in Domitianic Rome,” in A. Gutierrez Garcia, P. Lapuente, and I. Roda, eds., Interdisciplinary studies on ancient stone. Proceedings of IX ASMOSIA Conference, Tarragona, Spain, June 8-13, 2009. Tarragona: Institut Catala d’Arqueologia Classica (ICAC), pp. 772-779. (peer-reviewed)

2013. Review of Elise A. Friedland, The Roman Marble Sculptures from the Sanctuary of Pan at Caesarea Philippi/Panias (Israel). American Schools of Oriental Research Archaeological Reports No. 17. Boston: American Schools of Oriental Research, 2012, in Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2013.03.41, pp. 1-4.

2013. “La collezione di sculture del Santuario di Diana Nemorensis nel Museo di Archeologia e Antropologia dell' Università della Pennsylvania a Filadelfia: l’età giulio-claudiana,” in F. Coarelli and G. Ghini, eds., Caligola. la trasgressione al potere: il Catalogo della Mostra su Caligola in occasione del bimillenario. Roma: Soprintendenza per i beni archeologici del Lazio, pp. 245-250.

2013. Invited Review of Milette Gaifman, Aniconism in Greek Antiquity. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012 in New England Classical Journal Vol. 40.3, November 2013, pp. 235-237.

2014, 2017.  First author, jointly with Jack L. Davis, “American School of Classical Studies at Athens (ASCSA),” in C. Smith, ed., Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology, Vol. 1. New York: Springer, pp. 190-192 (in hard copy and online; a.o. 2/28/17: 240,000 downloads). Revised article for 2nd edition, 2017.

2014.  “Glencairn’s Minerva Victoria in Light of the Discovery of a 5th Century B.C. Greek Original of Athena Nike,” Glencairn Museum News, Glencairn Museum, Bryn Athyn, PA, May 2014, pp. 1-11:

2014. “A Ptolemaic Royal Portrait in the Arizona State Museum, University of Arizona,” Journal of Ancient Egyptian Interconnections (JAEI) Vol. 6:4, pp. 48-54. (peer-reviewed)

2015. First author, jointly with George H. Davis and David Gilman Romano, “The Monument Landscape and Associated Geology at the Sanctuary of Zeus on Mt. Lykaion,” in Proceedings of ASMOSIA X International Conference, “La Sapienza,” Universita di Roma, Rome: Bretschneider, May 21-26, 2012, pp. 399-406. (peer-reviewed)

2016. First author, jointly with David Gilman Romano, “All that Glitters is Not Gold”: Glencairn’s Siren Cauldron Attachment,” Glencairn Museum News 3, 2016: 1-19.

2016. “Old World Meets New World: Biography of an Egyptian Collection in the Sonoran Desert,” Journal of the Southwest 58,2, pp. 189-235. (peer-reviewed)

2017. Jointly with Luisa Passeggia, “Traditional Stone Working Tools” and “Marble Working Techniques in Carrara: An Annotated Bibliography,” in G. Biagini, ed., Hands at Work: The Carrara Marble/ Le Mani che Lavorano: Il Marmo di Carrara. Milan: International Traditional Knowledge Institute-US/Bandecchi & Vivaldi, Chapter 6, pp. 60-75; Chapter 8, pp. 92-96.

2018.  First author with W. John Tait, Christina Bisulca, Pearce Paul Creasman, Gregory Hodgins, and Tomasz Wazny, “An Ancient Egyptian Senet Board in the Arizona State Museum,” Zeitschrift für Ägyptische Sprache und Altertumskunde (ZÄS) 145, 1, pp. 71-85. (peer-reviewed)

2018. “A Re-examination of the Glencairn Athena/Minerva and its Relationship to the Sorgente Group Athena,” In Irene Bald Romano and Gianfranco Adornato, eds., Re-staging Greek Artworks in Roman Times. Proceedings of the International Colloquium at the Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa, April 3-4, 2014. Milano:  LED Edizioni Universitarie, pp. 15-33. (peer-reviewed)

2018. First author jointly with Hans Rupprecht Goette, Donato Attanasio, and Walter Prochaska, “Two Imperial Monuments in Puteoli: Use of Proconnesian Marble in the Domitianic and Trajanic Periods in Campania,” Proceedings of ASMOSIA XI International Conference in Split, Croatia, May 18-23, 2015. Split: University of Split, pp. 267-273 Split: University of Split, pp.  267-273. (peer-reviewed)

2020. First author, jointly with Kathryn L. Gleason, James G. Schryver, Jennifer H. Ramsay, and John E. Foss, “Gardens and Landscape of the Roman Villa by Lake Nemi, loc. S. Maria,” in M. Moltesen and B. Poulsen, eds., A Roman Villa by Lake Nemi: The Nordic Excavations at Lake Nemi, loc. S. Maria (1998-2002), vol. 2. Occasional Papers of the Nordic Institutes in Rome Vol. 10. Roma: Edizioni Quasar, Chapter 15, pp. 326-365. (peer-reviewed)

2020. “A Colossal Roman Acrolith from Scythopolis,” In Angelos Delivorrias, Nikolaos Kaltsas, Ismini Trianti, Eugenia Vikela, and Angelos Zarkadas, eds., ΣΠΟΝΔΗ - Αφιέρωμα στη μνήμη του Γιώργου Δεσπίνη. [Spondy: Tributes in Memory of George Despinis]. Mouseio Benaki 120 Παράρτημα. Athens: Benaki Museum, 2020, pp. 941-954. (peer-reviewed) 

2020. “Apulian Column Krater Given to Hitler by the Fascist Party in 1938,” In Céramique italiote en accèss ouvert (CIAO) 11 December 2020. (peer-reviewed)

2020-2021. Lead author, with Appendix by Dimitris Tambakopoulos and Yannis Maniatis. “A Roman Portrait of Alexander the Great from Beth Shean: The most important Hellenistic sculpture found in the Holy Land,” Israel Museum Studies in Archaeology 10, 2020-2021, pp. 2-28 (peer reviewed).


2022. First author, with Kyle Mahoney; Appendix by Dimitris Tambakopoulos and Yannis Maniatis, Beth Shean Studies: Aspects of History, Religion, Art, and Archaeology in Hellenistic and Roman Nysa-Scythopolis. Book manuscript accepted for publication by American Philosophical Society Publications, Philadelphia.

2022. Academic editor and co-author, The Fate of Antiquities in the Nazi Era.  Special Issue of the Journal of RIHA (International Association for Research Institutes in the History of Art), in collaboration with the Getty Research Institute and the Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte, Munich.