/ 25 March 2023

TWO professors from the University of the Philippines Diliman were recognized by the Italian Embassy for their exceptional work in their respective fields during the first Italian Design Day in the Philippines.

Interior Design Professor Dr. Raquel Florendo and Architecture Professor Dr. Gerard Rey Lico were awarded the 2023 Italian Design Day earlier this month.

Florendo and Lico were among the 23 Filipino design professionals who were honored in eight categories: education, Filipino architecture, urban landscape planning, industrial and product design, heritage, fashion, industry associations, and masters.

Florendo received the award under the education category for “her dedication to nurturing and facilitating the growth and development of students in preparation for their future in the design world.”

“A registered professional interior designer since 1994, Florendo is currently a member of the Commission on Higher Education-National Capital Region’s quality assessment team in the area of architecture, fine arts, and interior design; the Professional Regulation Commission Board of Interior Design for Continuing Professional Education/Development; and the Philippine Institute of Interior Designers,” UPD said.

“She is one of the prime movers of CHE’s ID 179 special projects class, wherein the class seeks to serve financially challenged institutions whose spaces are in dire need of rehabilitation. The latest iteration of this initiative is Project Akbay, in which the class renovated a center serving street children,” it added.

Meanwhile, Lico was awarded under the heritage category. He was among those behind the restoration of the Manila Metropolitan Theatre in 2018.

“Lico is an architect, architectural critic, and art historian. He is a multi-awarded author of publications on Philippine architecture and cultural studies; designer and curator of architectural exhibitions; and producer and director of a series of documentaries on Philippine-built environments such as Lunan, Masterbuilders, and Deco Decoded,” UPD said.