Irene (Rena) Fatsea is a registered architect-engineer in Greece with a specialization in architectural History & Theory (PhD). She holds a Diploma of Architecture from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and a Master of Architecture from the University of Oklahoma (USA). Her doctoral studies at both Georgia Tech and MIT gave a historiographical direction to her research interests, which have since focused on the intercultural exchanges between Greece and Europe during the modern period. Her doctoral thesis under the supervision of architecture professor Stanford Anderson (MIT, 2000) is entitled “Monumentality and its shadows: a quest for modern Greek architectural discourse in 19th-century Athens (1834-1862)” and addresses the problem of the belated development of architectural discourse in the newly established Greek state as a result of the equally belated formation of the architectural discipline.
She has taught in various architecture schools both in the US as a visiting professor for 7 years (MIT, Suffolk U., Roger Williams U., North Carolina State U.) and in Greece as an assistant professor since 2001, more specifically in the Department of Architecture of the University of Thessaly, and only for the period 2009-2018 in the respective school of NTUA. Her published work includes scientific articles in journals, collective volumes, and conference proceedings, as well as book-editing and translation on a wide range of topics referring to the history and theory of architecture. She has participated in numerous international scientific events on the same subject, for the most part through a blind peer-review process. Her work has received considerable distinctions on both the pre- and post-doctoral stages, including the annual fellowship of the Center for Greek Studies of Princeton University (2000-01) in recognition of the best doctoral thesis on a modern Greek subject, a sponsored research fellowship at the Getty Research Institute (spring 2011), and the International Travel Award of the Nineteenth-Century American Studies Association (2012). Her article entitled “The building of the Athenian Academy by Theophil Hansen in the context of nineteenth-century romantic classicism”, which was written first for the exhibition catalog honoring the 200th birthday of the Danish architect (V&M Theocharakis Foundation, Athens 2014) is being published in a revised form by the British Journal Art in Translation (Edinburgh U., Routledge, Getty Center), whose mission is “the publication in quality English language translation of the most significant and interesting articles on visual culture presently available only in their home-languages”.
• The History, Theory and Historiography of Architecture in the modern period with emphasis on the 19th century.
• The intercultural exchanges between Greece and Europe through the history of ideas and aesthetics with a focus on Architecture.
• The interdisciplinarity of Architecture: the formation of Architecture into a scientific discipline and its relationships with other disciplines.
• Normative discourses on architecture and the city and their ideological origins in the 19th century.
• The reconsideration of major post-18th-century stylistic categories (classicism, romanticism, historicism, etc.) in reference to architecture in Greece and Europe.
• The role of antiquity in the formation of modern architectural culture (theory, practice, living patterns) in Greece and Europe comparatively.
• The practice and anthropology of Athenian architecture through the testimony of 19th-century notary documents.