Mrs. Idanna Pucci
Idanna Pucci was raised in Florence, Italy. While completing her BA in Comparative Literature at Columbia University, she obtained a grant from the Margaret Mead Institute of Intercultural Studies for the project, The Prince and the Pauper: Two Balinese Portraits. Her first book, The Epic of Life: A Balinese Journey of the Soul, recounts a sacred epic, similar to Dante’s Divine Comedy, depicted on the ceiling paintings of the ancient court of the former royal capital of Bali in Indonesia.
Her next work, The Trials of Maria Barbella, focuses on her American great-grandmother who shook New York’s Gilded Age with the first nation-wide campaign against the death penalty in 1895 to save from execution the first woman sentenced to the electric chair, a twenty-year old poor Italian immigrant. Published in Italy as La Signora di Sing Sing, the book will be published in France in October 2008.
Idanna was awarded the 1995 Ultimo Novecento prize from the City of Pisa for her documentary on the historic games of her native Tuscany (ABC/Kane Productions, USA) as well as for her contribution to Leonardo’s Legacy, a Discovery Channel special on Leonardo da Vinci. Her documentary, Eugenia of Patagonia (Audience Award, Turin Film Festival, 2005), presents the life of her great-aunt who founded a town at the end of the world in Chile and served as its mayor for thirty years, fighting for the rights of the people and the environment.
Having obtained in Geneva the International Diploma of Humanitarian Assistance, she then served with the Open Society Institute in Burma and the United Nations in East Timor during the referendum for independence.
Her latest book is an illustrated anthology on the pacifist explorer Pietro Savorgnan di Brazzà (1852-1905), founder of Brazzaville in Congo, who is still remembered in Africa for his battle for the rights of the people. The book was published in 2006 on the occasion of the exhibition she curated in Rome at the Auditorium. The American edition, Brazza in Congo: A Legacy and A Life, is scheduled for publication by Umbrage Books in conjunction with an exhibition at New York University in spring 2009.