Art and Archaeology of the Mediterranean World Graduate Group
Steve graduated with an M.A. in Archaeology from Ghent University in Belgium in 2007. For his master’s thesis he reanalyzed the early third millennium B.C.E. monumental circular constructions from the Hamrin Valley in Central Iraq, resulting in an article in the journal Paléorient in 2009 and a contribution to the Susa and Elam conference volume in 2012. He went on to Leiden University in the Netherlands for a two-year research master program from which he graduated in 2010 with a thesis on mobility and social complexity in the ancient Near East. During this time he built up fieldwork experience at various sites in Belgium, Tunisia, and Corsica. In the past few years he has participated in excavations throughout the Middle East in Syria, Azerbaijan, the United Arab Emirates, and Iraqi Kurdistan.
In 2010 Steve entered the Ph.D. program in Art and Archaeology of the Mediterranean World at Penn. In order to continue exploring the interaction sphere encompassing Mesopotamia and the Iranian highlands in the Bronze Age, his dissertation focuses on indigenous developments in the western Zagros region during the Early Bronze Age under the guidance of Professors Holly Pittman (a Kolb senior fellow), Richard Zettler (a Kolb senior fellow), and Lauren Ristvet. This dissertation research relies on the analysis of the unpublished Mahidasht Survey Project (housed at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto), and new excavations at Kani Shaie in Iraqi Kurdistan directed by Steve Renette and his colleagues from the University of Coimbra (Portugal).
In addition, Steve is one of the researchers in the al-Hiba Publication Project lead by Professor Holly Pittman for which he is analyzing and organizing the ceramic material. He also continues to present papers at international conferences on a variety of topics, most recently at a conference held in Athens in 2013 on the archaeology of Kurdistan, at the Ninth Annual Kolb Junior Fellows Colloquium in 2014, and at the annual meetings of the American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR) and the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA). As a result of his research as a Kolb Junior Fellow, he published an article on ancient Mesopotamian feasting iconography in a volume titled Feasting in the Archaeology and Texts of the Hebrew Bible and Ancient Near East (2014), and the article "Painted Pottery from Al-Hiba: Godin Tepe III Chronology and Interactions between Ancient Lagash and Elam," in the journal Iran (2015). He will also publish a report on the Kani Shaie Archaeological Project in a volume titled Archaeological Research in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and Adjacent Areas, and a chapter on stratigraphy in the volume Associated Regional Chronologies for the Ancient Near East and the Eastern Mediterranean: the Tigridian Region.