Architectural historian Federica Vannucchi has been named the new academic director of the Pratt Rome Program. The long-standing program is one of the oldest American foreign studies programs in Italy and is administered by the School of Architecture’s Undergraduate Architecture department and the Office of Education Abroad and International Programs within the Office of the Provost. Vannucchi is an adjunct associate professor of undergraduate architecture at Pratt and a licensed architect and an architectural historian. She takes over from Richard Piccolo, adjunct associate professor-CCE of undergraduate architecture; BID ’66, who helped to found the Pratt Rome Program starting in 1974.
“As the new chair of Undergraduate Architecture at Pratt, I am proud to preside over the passing of the torch from its birth and maturing under Richard Piccolo, to its growth and expansion shepherded by Federica Vannucchi,” said Stephen Slaughter, chair of undergraduate architecture. “From its glorious past to the promise of the future, the Pratt Rome Program has always, and continues to be, in good hands.”
Vannucchi’s appointment continues the program’s strong leadership and the unique representation of the two cultures that have defined it over its history. This semester marks the program’s 50th anniversary, and Piccolo and his wife, Emanuela Ricciardi, will be honored for their decades of service at a gala event for alumni in Rome this April. Piccolo will remain an advisor to the program’s director and part of its faculty.
“I am deeply honored to be the next director of the Pratt Rome Program,” Vannucchi said. “I wish to continue its tradition of welcoming Pratt students into the Eternal City as well as introducing them to its contemporary life and culture.”
Vannucchi first joined the School of Architecture faculty in 2007 and has most recently been teaching and coordinating the required history/theory sequence. She is a graduate of the University of Florence, Yale University, and Princeton University, where she received her PhD in History, Theory, and Criticism.
Vannucchi’s research explores Italian modern architecture and architectural exhibitions and how they are platforms for cultural, political, and diplomatic exchange. Her work has been widely published in journals and edited volumes and she has co-curated several design exhibitions, such as Radical Pedagogies (2014) which was awarded a Special Mention at the 14th International Architecture Exhibition of the Venice Biennale. She has worked in a number of architecture firms, including Peter Eisenman Architects, where she co-designed the City of Culture in Santiago de Compostela, Spain, among other projects.