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Kaja Tally-Schumacher

Ph.D. Student in History of Art


Kaja’s research interests include ancient architectural theory, the relationship between public and domestic space, landscape design and garden archaeology, and expressions of imperialism in the Roman world. She is particularly interested in the translation and replication of space. Her secondary area of interest includes nineteenth and twentieth century urbanism and architecture. 

Kaja’s dissertation, “Cultivating Empire: Transplanting and Translating Rome,” responds to the silence in recent elite Roman garden publications, exhibits, and catalogues on the slave labor that made these spaces possible. Her project investigates the rise of professional slave, freedmen, and free gardeners in the first centuries BCE and CE.

Kaja holds a B.A. in Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology and in Political Science from the University of Minnesota (2007), an MA with distinction in Ancient Art History from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst (2012), and is currently pursuing a PhD in Ancient Art and Archaeology at Cornell.  She is also a recipient of two teaching awards, the University of Massachusetts-Amherst Distinguished Teaching Award (2011-2012), and the Cornell University James F. Slevin Assignment Sequence Writing Center Instructor Award (2017). Kaja was a Junior Fellow in Garden and Landscape Studies at Dumbarton Oaks in Fall 2017, and in Spring 2018 is an Exchange Scholar in the Art and Archaeology of the Mediterranean World Program at the University of Pennsylvania. She has primarily excavated at Messene, Greece, and in the ancient Vesuvian towns in the Bay of Naples. 


  • Archaeology Program
  • History of Art and Visual Studies


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