Brandon Clifford Awarded Rome Prize in Architecture

Brandon Clifford receives the 2017-18 Founders Rome Prize in Architecture from the American Academy in Rome. His project is titled 'Ghosts of Rome'.

Ghost /gõst/ n. an apparition of the ancient that becomes manifest to the contemporary.

When a red granite obelisk was transported from Egypt and erected in St. Peter's Sq., a massive spectacle surrounded the armature and celebration of its assumed final positioning. Not only is little known of the megalith's origin, little is also known of this spectacular effort. The ghosts of this knowledge intentionally erased in favor of a mystical understanding of power. I am fascinated with erasures of knowledge, for the potentials they offer through contemporary manifestations. Rome is full of ghosts; of which I am most interested in three types—petrification, spectacle, and spatial. This proposal seeks to exercise a series of Roman translations, through conversations with fellow collaborators. Not only is Rome an ideal incubator for mining these pockets of knowledge, but also the social and cross-disciplinary conversations that emerge through the residency are an ideal scenario for such a research method. What kinds of architectures emerge when the ghosts of Rome manifest today?