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Arch. Beatriz del Cueto, winner of the 2011-12 Rome Prize under the category of Historic Preservation and Conservation,
returns home to share the fruits of her investigation

San Juan, Puerto Rico, September 13, 2012 – After a six month stay in Rome, the Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico (PUPR) and the School of Architecture (ArqPoli) welcome back one of its most distinguished professors: Arch. Beatriz del Cueto, FAIA. Winner of the 2011-12 Rome Prize under the category of Historic Preservation and Conservation, del Cueto returns home to share the fruits of her investigation 188 DAYS IN ITALY: a renewed encounter with Architectural Conservation.

“On behalf of the entire university community of the Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico, I congratulate architect Beatriz del Cueto on her 2011-12 Rome Prize in Historic Preservation and Conservation, and her impressive investigation results,” said Ernesto Vázquez-Barquet, President of PUPR. “We all feel excited and proud to have resources of Beatriz’s caliber in our faculty, helping us to deliver a world-class academic offering in the fields of design and architecture.”

The American Academy in Rome Prize provides the winners with a fellowship, including stipend, a study or workshop, lodging, and boarding for a period of six months to two years in the facilities of the Academy in Rome, Italy. Out of 860 people who competed nationally, del Cueto was chosen among the 27 winners who lived in community, in the historic residence Villa Aurelia, in the Gianicolo district of Rome. During her six month stay in Rome as a 2011-12 Rome Prize winner, del Cueto travelled throughout Italy making field visits to important restoration projects and researching themes related to her professional work in the Caribbean. Among her many activities, she lectured at the Structural Engineering Department of the Politecnico di Milano University as well as the restoration courses of the Architecture School of the Università Gabriele d'Annunzio di Chieti e Pescara.

During the American Academy’s Trustees Week activities, which included Open Studios, del Cueto exhibited her work as a photo-montage at the Academy’s Art Gallery. The 2011-12 Rome Prize winners were inducted into the Society of Fellows of the Academy during an afternoon presentation which took place on the steps of the McKim Mead & White building.  On the receiving line were: AAR Chairman of the Board, William B. Hart; President Adele Chatfield-Taylor; Director Christopher S. Celenza; as well as United States Ambassador to Italy, David Thorne. This activity was followed by a formal dinner at the Cortile of the institution and a festive celebration.

Beatriz del Cueto, FAIA is a licensed architect specialized in Historic Conservation. She is principal and partner of the firm Pantel, del Cueto & Associates founded in Puerto Rico in 1985. The firm provides consultation in matters related to the built patrimony and topics such as history, archaeology, and traditional architecture. She recently became a Fellow of the American Academy in Rome when she completed her research work at the Eternal City as the recipient of the Academy’s Rome Prize, which is annually sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts under the category of Historic Preservation and Conservation.

In addition to continuing with an active private practice in the conservation of the built patrimony of Puerto Rico, del Cueto founded and directs the Architectural Conservation Laboratory of the Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico School of Architecture - the first university level facility of its kind in the West Indies. As a Faculty Member, and using this facility as a teaching aid, she teaches advanced courses in traditional building technology, conservation theory, scientific analysis of historic construction materials and conservation praxis.

Her articles and architectural projects have received numerous awards and have been published in prestigious magazines such as APT Bulletin - the Journal of Preservation Technology, AAA - Archivos de Arquitectura Antillana, Revista Internacional de Arquitectura y Cultura en el Gran Caribe, Architecture, Florida and Caribbean Architect, Commercial Renovation, Plástica, and Qué Pasa, as well as local newspapers and journals.  She has lectured extensively on the subject of historic preservation and building technologies in Puerto Rico and the Spanish Caribbean and is in the process of publishing a book on these subjects.  In recent years, del Cueto has dedicated her primary research and writing to the development and conservation problems of early 20th century hydraulic mortars and cements in Puerto Rico.

For more information on this and other research by the faculty of the Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico School of Architecture, call 787-622-8000 ext. 417 or visit the Website www.pupr.edu/arqpoli.

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