The life of Mariapia Fanfani has always been dominated by two great passions: alleviating the suffering of the most needy, and photography, which she cultivated in New York as a student of Evelyn Hofer and that culminated in the publication of eighteen books. The series of eight volumes, “Italian Embassies in the World”, published between 1963 and 1989; “Foreign Embassies in Rome”, SISAR, Milan 1970; “Poland: 2nd Millennium”, Silvana Editoriale, Cinisello Balsamo 1970; “Romania: Latin World”, UNEDI, Roma 1973; “China: a Quarter of the World”, Fratelli Fabbri, Milan 1976; “Children of Today; the Hope of 2000”, Silvana Editorial, Roma 1982.
Other publications: “A Day in Bèbèdjia. Testimonies and Observations on Hunger in the World”, Milan 1981; “Hayat: on the Side of Life”, Rusconi, Milan 1987; and “One Life, Two Lives”, Mondadori, Milan 2002.

Italian Embassies in the World
, vol. 1-6, 1963-1989

The diplomatic world owes something to Mariapia Fanfani.  It is due to her sense of history, her culture, her good taste, and especially her narrative and visual talent, that these embassies have become the subject of a book, as symbols of the links that unite different peoples and races in a civilized exchange of economic and cultural relationships and also in the fragile but valuable fabric of political agreements.

Foreign Embassies in Rome,
Edizioni SISAR, Milan, 1970

Foreign Embassies in Rome is a homage to a city that is unique in the world.  It hosts a double diplomatic corps and it hosts them in princely, and sometimes even royal, dwellings that are laden with history and memories.  All of them, even the most modern, are ennobled by the dust of Rome.  It is the golden dust of a millenial civilization.


Romania: Latin World
, UNEDI, Rome, 1973

“Approaching our country in a friendly manner, Mariapia Vecchi discovered this vertical trajectory, by going back to the history of the monasteries in the north of Moldavia in modern Romania, the hydraulic system of the Porte di Ferro, the iron and steel complex in Galata and the “Man of Socialist Romania”. To see with the heart: this is an attitude that no longer belongs either to the technique nor to the instrument used, nor anything else; but to refinement.
China: a Quarter of the World, Fratelli Fabbri Editori, Milan, 1976

“Before my lens passed unknown places and personages, but ones that I had already imagined through the descriptions of famous writers. In this way, I ended up seeing China through my own eyes and those of others. The experiences of others made me understand better a reality that is very far from daily life in the West.”

Poland, 2nd Millennium
, Silvana Editoriale d’arte, Milan, 1982

“I wanted my photographic investigation to emphasize especially the entire contribution of Polish society to the work of reconstruction and development of Poland. This image of the country, this truth concerning its struggles and successes, is what I wanted to spread throughout the world. My intention was to produce a testimony. Poland is a country of extraordinary importance, with an enormous historical heritage, incalculable possibilities, and a fascinating culture. It is a country with marvelous people.”
Mariapia Vecchi

Children of Today, the Hope of 2000”,  Silvana Editoriale, 1982

“Looking through these images by Mariapia Fanfani, you see that they are all in favor of children. They proclaim the right to life and happiness, of innocence and knowledge. They often emphasize the loneliness, pain and poverty in which they are abandoned. Less often the photos record the light-heartedness of her life. They invite us to reflect on the endless fault of omission towards those who will be the protagonists of tomorrow”.


A Day in Bébédjia. Testimony and remarks regarding hunger in the world, Rusconi, Milan, 1982

“It is not possible to observe the inhuman poverty in that part of the Third World and remain indifferent. That is why I decided to publish these notes and photographs: to make known the testimony and some remarks concerning the unimaginable suffering of so many creatures”.

We for Them
. Chronicle of a peace mission in Africa, Associazione “We for Them”, 1986

This is the report of a mission of peace in Africa. It is the story of the mission of the Ship of Peace. A Sixty-day voyage to a continent in the tight grip of a drought, famine and misery.

Hayat. For Life. Rusconi, Milan, 1987 (4 language: Italian; English, French, Spanish)

“During sixty days, from July 31st to October 1st, 1985, the “Ship of Peace” sailed around Africa bringing assistance to eighteen countries struck by draught and famine. In this book, Mariapia Fanfani, the creator and organizer of that mission, tells the story of the fifty thousand kilometers covered to distribute the aid”.

One Life, Two Lives
, Mondadori 2002

“This is not just a book of memories, but something more. There is the comparison and confluence of two types of humanity: the middle class influenced and well-oriented by the Italian industrial triangle of the first half of the 20th century, and the new Catholic leadership that guided Italy through the post-war reconstruction and the conquest of fourth place among the industrialized countries of the world.”


The Challenge of Peace, 2007

This volume attempts to tell us what one woman alone succeeded in doing in sixty-five years of passionate effort.

A Photographer, a Painter,  Viviani Editore, 2007

“This volume is both a “family album” composed of splendid photographs of Amintore Fanfani as a painter and a “diary of the soul” in which the author retraces the stages of her daily sharing of a life and ideals; of passions and profound aesthetic, moral and politcal understanding.”