Sep 07, 2017 |
Barbara Luisi, an internationally acclaimed fine arts photographer, will open an exhibition of her work at St. Bonaventure University’s Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts with an artist’s talk at 4 p.m. Friday, Sept. 15, in the Quick Center atrium.
The talk and a reception that follows are free and open to all.
The exhibition, titled “The Spiritual South,” features photographs of ancient cave churches in southern Italy and is on view through Dec. 20. It is part of the university’s celebration of the 800th anniversary of the birth of Saint Bonaventure of Bagnoregio, the university’s patron saint.
This exhibition follows two very contrasting exhibitions by Luisi at the Quick Center in 2013: “Pearls, Tears of the Sea,” featuring underwater photography; and “Glowing Nights,” which exhibited artificial light photography.
Ludwig Brunner, executive director of the Quick Center, is excited about Luisi’s return to his galleries.
“When I first saw the photographs of Barbara Luisi in New York City I was immediately fascinated by her use of light,” said Brunner. “We are very proud and grateful that Ms. Luisi has agreed to return to St. Bonaventure University for this momentous anniversary weekend of Saint Bonaventure of Bagnoregio.”
Luisi provides this background to this new exhibition: “In the Italian South of Apulia, while searching for the oldest still existing olive trees, I found many more spiritual and sacred places — beginning from prehistoric times, Dolmen and Menhirs, to the early cave churches from around 1000 A.C. The area is full of signs of different ancient cultures; an inner light is still shining today. These places hide and need to be found. I explored them with my camera.”
Born in Munich, Germany, Luisi now lives and works in New York City and in Italy. A student of the violin since she was 9, she graduated from the Munich Arts and Music High School, then studied violin at the Hochschule fur Musik und Theater in Munich, obtaining a concert diploma. She performed professionally for many years in several leading European orchestras including the Munich Philharmonic, Orchestre du Capitol de Toulouse, and Bayerische Staatsoper. She was first violinist in the “Pocci String Quartet.”
Luisi credits these years of music for stimulating and reinforcing her sensitivities and her eye for the irretrievable moment. At the age of 17, she began to experiment with photography, applying the visual images she experienced in music to her newfound interest, and developing her work in her own darkroom. She eventually devoted her attention fully to photography.
Luisi has engaged in portraiture often relating to theater and music, still-life, nightlife, and the human body. Three photo books of her work have been published and there have been many exhibitions of her work, such as at the Musikverein in Vienna, Geneva’s Victoria Hall, Lincoln Center in New York City, as well as galleries in Europe, the U.S. and Japan.
She has collaborated and studied with Eikoh Hosoe, Art Streiber, Michael Grecco, Andreas Bitesnich, and Jock Sturges, among others.
The Friday, Sept. 15, talk and reception are a prelude to the weekend’s world premiere of “Saint Bonaventure Mass,” which was written by Luisi’s husband, Maestro Fabio Luisi, music director of the Zurich Opera in Switzerland and the Royal Danish Orchestra, and former principal conductor of New York’s Metropolitan Opera.
A gift to the university in celebration of the 800th anniversary of Saint Bonaventure’s birth, the composition will be presented within a liturgical Mass at the University Chapel at 5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 17. Two days later, it will make its New York City debut, in concert form only, at the Cloisters at the Metropolitan Museum. Learn more at www.sbu.edu/bonaventuremass.
Quick Center galleries are open from noon to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Museum admission is free and open to the public year round. For more information, visit www.sbu.edu/quickcenter or call the box office at 716-375-2494.
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