Lucrezia de Domizio Durini/ F.I.U. Italy / Bolognano
An atypical figure of the contemporary art system, Lucrezia De Domizio, Baroness Durini has been operating for over thirty years in the field of international culture, as cultural operator, journalist, writer and patron. The end of the Sixties saw the launch of her first challenge, with the opening of Studio L.D. in Pescara, a gallery-house structured by Getuliano Alvani, Ettore Spalletti and Marco Ceroli. She organised exhibitions by Burri, Fontana, Capogrossi, Rotella, Pistoletto and proposed American Pop Art and International Constructivism.
Married to Baron Giuseppe Durini of Bolognano, in the Seventies the villa of San Silvestro Colli (PE) became a meeting centre for the protagonists of the art scene at that historic moment. All the protagonists of Conceptual art and Arte Povera would meet at her house in the name of excellence and friendship. Mario and Marisa Merz, Kounellis, Calzolari, Bagnolari, Vettor Pisani, Paolini, Mattiaci, Isgrò, Boetti, Ontani, De Dominicis, Fabro, Agnetti, Job, Russo, Giuli, Salvadori, Clemente, Chia and many others. This permanent cenacle saw the participation of critics including Bonito Oliva, Celant, Tommassoni, Trini, Menna, Corà, Salerno, Gatt and Izzo, at the same time transforming the stable of an old Bourbon fort in Pescara into a space for events and anti-traditional artistic operations.
In 1971 she met the German artist Joseph Beuys on the ferry to Capri. This meeting led to the first discussion Incontro con Beuys (Meeting With Beuys) in 1974. While the greatest events of aesthetic research in twenty years were taking place in Pescara and the Villa in San Silvestro Colli, the work of Joseph Beuys was becoming the guiding thread which would transform Lucrezia De Domizio's entire existence, profoundly sharing as she did the whole Beuysian philosophy and becoming its scholar and firm supporter. Venice, Kassel, Bolognano, Tokyo, Naples, Paris, London, Düsseldorf, the Seychelles, New York and Rome were the stages of the Operazione Difesa della Natura (Operation Defence of Nature) entrusted to her by Joseph Beuys. In the historic refuge of the Abruzzi countryside, this Operation to safeguard the environment and standing in anthropological defence of man and human creativity found its most creative moments in the last fifteen years of the artist's life.
One of the most significant figures of the international artistic scene after the Second World War, Beuys made Bolognano his Italian residence. Active interlocutors included the intellectuals Harald Szeemann, Pierre Restany and Thomas Messer. Since Joseph Beuys' death (23 January 1986), Lucrezia De Domizio Durini has dedicated her energies to the diffusion of Beuysian philosophy through discussions, debates, conferences, publications, conventions, theses, essays and exhibitions, in particular the anthology of the Operacio Difesa della Natura at the Museo Santa Monica in Barcelona promoted by the Generalitat de Catalunya 1993, the exhibition Diary of Seychelles, Difesa della Natura promoted by the Province of Perugia at the Rocca Paolina 1996, the first Convegno Mondiale (world conference) in Budapest in 2000, the exhibition Joseph Beuys. L'immagine dell'Umanità (Joseph Beuys. The Image of Humanity) at the MART museum in Trento in 2001 and Piazza Beuys with the Bosco Sacro di Beuys (Beuys' Sacred Forest) in Gibellina. Author of twenty books on Beuysian thinking, perhaps the most significant is Il Cappello di Feltro (The Felt Hat), translated into seven languages and languages and adopted as a reading text in many schools of art both in Italy and abroad.
Collector and publisher of works of art, president of the Italian Free International University, awarded the title of Chevalier, the Order of Arts and Literature in Paris by J. Lang in 1993, member of the Tribunale dell'Ambiente (environmental tribunal), she has made donations of many of Joseph Beuys' works of art, most significantly to the Uffizi Gallery in Florence and the university of architecture in Venice, while abroad she has donated to the Zurich Kunsthaus ("Olivestone"). the Mitterand Foundation of Paris and to the museums of Sarajevo and San Marino. Since 1988 she has been living and working in Milan in a loft converted from the old Caproni industrial buildings, now an international meeting place and editorial office of the periodical "RISK Arte Oggi", Cultural Intercommunication magazine founded by Lucrezia De Domizio Durini in 1990. She has been featured in newspapers including "Le Monde", "Figaro", "El Pais", "New York Times", "Corriere della Sera", "Vogue", "Il Sole 24 Ore", "Abitare", "Giornale dell'Arte" and many other international weekly and monthly magazines.
She is currently working towards the establishment of the JOSEPH BEUYS International Documentation Centre with the aim of safeguarding the environment and promoting interrelations between the various cultural situations of daily life. On 13 May 1999, in solidary collaboration with Harald Szeemann, one of the world's most renowned art curators, she inaugurated Piazza Joseph Beuys in Bolognano. A place created according to Beuysian concepts, a phenomenological unicum in the world history of art. She has restructured the historical residence of Palazzo Durini in Bolognano, bringing to life the exclusive and unrepeatable project la casa di lucrezia (the house of Lucrezia), bearing testimony to life and events, unique in Italy.
To mark the eightieth anniversary of Beuys' birth, she promoted the Difesa Della Natura Stamp in collaboration with the State Philately of San Marino, in tribute to the German master. She collaborates with architects of international fame such Jean Nouvel, Mario Botta and Renzo Piano, with poets such as Sanguinetti, with philosophers like Sgalambro and with art critics such as Harald Szeemann and Pierre Restany.
She is currently curator of the Italian section of the new Sarejevo Museum. She has collaborated for approximately six years with Edizioni Charta of Milan, managing Charta/Risk, a special series of cultural intercommunication publications.
She is currently managing the series Il Clavicembalo (the harpsichord) for publishing house Editrice Silvana in Milan, and has written and published 56 art books.
She has directed pieces at the Gobetti Theatre in Turin (1977), at the Quirino in Rome for Michelangelo Pistoletto (1980) and has devised two unusual pièces The Thought Take Shape and The Felt Hat Joseph Beuys A Life Told.
She is curator of important exhibitions in prestigious museums in many countries of the world. A rare figure in international culture, Lucrezia De Domizio Durini lives a broadened vision of art in her philosophy of work, an art which is one with life and is an existential practice at the same time, a practice of all those teachings which only art knows and can give. In 2001 she was awarded the title of Chevalier, the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic by President of the Republic Hon. C. A. Ciampi and the Medaglia al Merito della Cultura (cultural merit medal) by the city of Sarajevo.
In 2002 she was awarded the Maiella Prize. Lucrezia De Domizio Durini should be considered an independent cultural operator who has made art and culture along with humanitarian and environmental issues the primary purpose of her own existence, proudly defining herself a collector of human relationships.
In 2007 Lucrezia De Domizio Durini was curator/organizer of the
100 days permanent FIU Conference
JOSEPH BEUYS - DIFESA DELLA NATURA
THE LIVING SCULPTURE Kassel 1977-Venice 2007
HOMAGE TO HARALD SZEEMANN
at Spazio Thetis, 52th Biennale in Venice
Patrick Healy on Lucrezia De Domizio Durini and Joseph Beuys