The American School of Classical Studies at Athens is pleased to announce a gift from Rob Loomis, President of the Board of Trustees, to name a room in honor of Alison Frantz. This gift is a tribute to her outstanding achievements as a scholar and archaeological photographer, for which the School is both honored and proud.
The Frantz Room is located on the second floor of Loring Hall. On Thursday, May 25, 2023, the School celebrated this room naming with a dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony.
Photo on the left: William T. Loomis, President of the Board of Trustees
Photo on the right: Cutting the ribbon (from left to right: John McK. Camp II, Marie Mauzy, Craig Mauzy)
About Alison Frantz
Alison Frantz received her A.B. in Classics from Smith College in 1924 and spent a year at the American Academy in Rome and two years on the Index of Christian Art staff before she first came to the American School in 1929–1930. In 1934, she returned to the School to join the team of the Agora Excavations, eventually becoming Agora Photographer (1939–1964) and Research Fellow (1964–1995).
Alison Frantz doing the photograph of the amphora P 18348 with a Leica, using a sliding focus and artificial lighting. (1947)
In 1937, she received her Ph.D. in Byzantine Archaeology from Columbia, and as a scholar, she is known primarily for her work on post-classical Athens, notably Agora XX: The Church of the Holy Apostles (1971) and Agora XXIV: Late Antiquity A.D. 267–700 (1988).
She is equally well-known for her archaeological photography: (a) her comprehensive visual record of 25 years of Agora excavations, (b) her classic black-and-white photos of Greek sculpture (notably the Parthenon frieze and the Temple of Zeus at Olympia), and (c) her meticulous recording, over the course of two hectic days in 1939, of more than 600 Linear B tablets, which enabled scholars to work on their decipherment during and immediately after World War II.
Alison Frantz at the Athenian Agora Excavations, photo lab
As Cultural Attaché of the U.S. Embassy in Athens (1946–1949), she established the Fulbright Exchange Program in Greece and was instrumental in reviving the Athens Symphony Orchestra. In 1995, the School’s first Gennadius fellowship was renamed in her memory as the M. Alison Frantz Fellowship.
"Alison Frantz will go down in the annals of the American School as its most prominent Byzantine archaeologist and its most accomplished photographer of Greek sculpture and architecture,” said Rob Loomis. “Honoring Alison in this way ensures that future generations will always remember her significant contribution to the American School and the history and culture of post-classical Athens.”
About the Loring Hall Campaign
The Campaign was launched in October 2018 to raise funds for renovating and expanding the three aging buildings that have served as the intellectual and residential heart of the American School: Loring Hall, the Annex, and McCredie House. The Loring Hall buildings remain where members of the School community gather for meals, tea, ouzo hour, holiday celebrations, and lectures—a source of lifelong professional and personal relationships that characterize the school's collegial and intellectually vibrant atmosphere. This modernized setting enhances that experience and will meet the School community’s needs well into the future.
Support the Loring Hall Campaign
The goal of the Loring Hall campaign is $10.2 million, inclusive of a maintenance endowment. Thanks to generous supporters of this historic initiative, more than $8.6 million has been raised to date. The newly renovated and expanded buildings were dedicated on Saturday, June 4, 2022, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and reception for the School community.
To learn more about how you can support this historic initiative, please contact Nancy Savaides, Director of Stewardship and Engagement, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 609-454-6810. Naming opportunities for various spaces in the Loring Hall buildings are still available. Donors can choose from multiple gift levels to name a room or area in honor of themselves, an American School scholar, or a family member, friend, or group.