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7 July 2005

Lautenschläger Research Prize 2005 for Prof. Dr. Tonio Hölscher

The 250,000-euro Lautenschläger Research Prize 2005 goes to classical archaeologist Professor Dr. Tonio Hölscher — The Polish minister of science Michal Kleiber will present the Prize in the Great Hall of the University on 23 September 2005

Tonio Hölscher, Professor für Klassische Archäologie am Institut für Altertumswissenschaften der Universität Heidelberg  
Professor Tonio Hölscher
Foto : Hubert Vögele

Tonio Hölscher, professor of classical archaeology at the University of Heidelberg's Institute for the Study of Ancient Civilisations, has been selected to receive the Lautenschläger Research Prize of the University of Heidelberg 2005. The award is worth 250,000 euros and will be presented to Professor Hölscher in September by the Polish minister of science Michal Kleiber. This was announced today by the Awarding Committee, made up of 12 internationally renowned scholars and scientists.

The distinction goes to Professor Hölscher in recognition of his research on the political and social functions of images in ancient Greek and Roman art. Both in thematic and methodological terms his research work and publications have opened up new vistas for classical archaeology by establishing fruitful links with methods and approaches adopted in historical studies, textology, media research, religious studies, semiotics and cultural anthropology. He has succeeded in placing his subject on an interdisciplinary footing and his research has been instrumental in directing attention to issues of universal significance, such as the legitimisation of rule, the use of iconography for propaganda purposes, the role of myths, the understanding of the function of public spaces and monuments and the conception of otherness.

Hölscher's research is aimed at enhancing our understanding of the significance of visual images for political and social life in ancient Greece and Rome. Central concerns in his work centre around the representation of states and statesmen in political monuments, the portrayal of normative societal concepts in pictorial artworks and the shaping and experience of public and private spaces by way of architecture and the rituals taking place in them.

The Lautenschläger Prize is donated by the founder of the MLP AG financial services company, Manfred Lautenschläger, and is Germany's most generously endowed research prize from a private individual. It is awarded every two years to renowned scientists and scholars from the University of Heidelberg or to highly-regarded researchers from foreign universities with a record of academic cooperation with the University of Heidelberg. Representatives of all areas of academic inquiry are eligible for the Prize, whether they are engaged in basic or applied research.

The presentation ceremony will take place at 7 p.m. on 23 September in the Great Hall of the Old University in Heidelberg. The Prize will be presented by the Polish minister of science Michal Kleiber, who will also deliver the ceremonial address. The speech in honour of Professor Hölscher will be held by Professor Wolfgang Frühwald, president of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.

(Editors are cordially invited to apply to for photographs of Professor Hölscher.)

Please address any inquiries to
Dr. Jens Hemmelskamp
Research Department
University of Heidelberg
Seminarstrasse 2
D-69117 Heidelberg
phone: 06221/542145, fax: 543599

Dr. Michael Schwarz
Press Officer of the University of Heidelberg
phone: 06221/542310, fax: 54317

Irene Thewalt

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