Lucio Amelio

Lucio Amelio (1990)
Lucio Amelio (1990)

Lucio Amelio (born Naples, 13 September 1931 - died Naples, 2 July 1994) was an Italian art dealer, curator, and actor. For decades he contributed to make Naples an international art centre encouraging the dialogue between European and American contemporary arts.[1]


Lucio Amelio was born on September 13, 1931 in Via dei Tribunali in Naples. He had four sisters - Marisa († 1981), Giuliana, Lina and Anna. Due to the Second World War, his family moved several times and settled in 1944 for twelve years in Resina. After graduating in 1949 from Liceo scientifico, Amelio enrolled in architecture studies at the University of Naples. Amelio quickly established himself as a leading figure in the international contemporary art market from the mid-sixties to the mid-nineties. In 1965 he opened the Modern Art Agency,[2] a gallery in Parco Margherita dedicated to experimental art. In 1969 he opened the Galleria Lucio Amelio in Naples’ Piazza dei Martiri, which hosted exhibitions of artists such as Robert Rauschenberg, Mario Merz, Jannis Kounellis, Keith Haring, Cy Twombly, Dieter Hacker.[3][4]

In 1980 Amelio introduced Joseph Beuys to Andy Warhol, and later that year he organized the exhibition of portraits "by Beuys, Warhol".[5][6]

One of Amelio's most significant achievements was the exhibition Terrae Motus he organized in 1982 following the 1980 Irpinia earthquake in Italy. In 1987, Terrae Motus traveled to the Grand Palais, Paris. The exhibition featured the work of more than 50 artists, including Joseph Beuys, Andy Warhol, Gerhard Richter, Keith Haring, Cy Twombly, Miquel Barceló, Tony Cragg, Mimmo Paladino, Giulio Paolini, George Condo, Emilio Vedova, Anselm Kiefer, Philip Taaffe, Donald Baechler, David Bowes, Robert Mapplethorpe, Luciano Fabro, Gilbert & George, Richard Long and many others. Later grouped in a collection, today "Terrae Motus" is on permanent display in the Palace of Caserta.[7]

In 1988, Lucio Amelio co-founded an art gallery in Paris in the middle of Saint Germain des Pres neighborhood, in Rue Jacques Callot 4: Galerie Pièce Unique.

Later years and deathEdit

Lucio Amelio, HIV positive since 1987, died in his hometown of Naples as a result of AIDS on July 2, 1994.[8][9]

Tomb on CapriEdit

Lucio Amelio's grave is located on the Cimitero Acattolico, the non-Catholic cemetery, on the island of Capri.[10][11] Many international writers and artists are buried there, such as the writer Norman Douglas and the French Baron Jacques d'Adelswärd-Fersen - whose house on Capri, the Villa Lysis, Amelio wanted to restore in the last few years of his life had. Amelio's gravestone, a large rectangular plate made of black Belgian marble was designed Amelio himself with the help of the art critic Michele Bonuomoa year before his death. In the middle of the marble slab, under the name of "Lucio Amelio", a circle is engraved, the interior of which, at the highest level of the sun, causes an intense light through a mirror effect; below is the inscription L'isola del Sonno (Isle of Sleep), which cites the title of a small object created by Joseph Beuys in Capri in the summer of 1974.


Lucio Amelio was also an actor. He worked with director Lina Wertmuller in four films.

  • 1975, Pasqualino Settebellezze (Seven Beauties),[12]
  • 1978, Fatto di sangue fra due uomini per causa di una vedova, si sospettano moventi politici (Blood Feud),
  • 1979, La fine del mondo nel nostro solito letto in una notte piena di pioggia (A Night Full of Rain),
  • 1991, Wertmuller’s film for television Sabato, domenica e lunedì (Saturday, Sunday and Monday)[13]
  • 1992, Mario Martone’s Morte di un matematico napoletano (Death of a Neapolitan Mathematician)


  1. ^ "Art dealer Lucio Amelio's adventure". Italy24. 2015-01-10. Retrieved 2015-10-29.
  2. ^ "Naples remembers Lucio Amelio". Le Sirenuse Positano (Sirenuse Journal). Retrieved 2015-10-29.
  3. ^ Achille Bonito Oliva, Eduardo Cicelyn - "Lucio Amelio" - Annali delle Arti, Arte Moderna - Skira Editore 2004
  4. ^ "Napoli presente: posizioni e prospettive dell'arte contemporanea", di Lóránd Hegyi - Electa, Napoli 2005
  5. ^ "Warhol, Beuys: omaggio a Lucio Amelio" - a cura di Michele Bonuomo, Mazzotta 2007
  6. ^ Articolo pubblicato sul sito
  7. ^ "Lucio Amelio". Retrieved 2015-10-29.
  8. ^ Rivkin, Joshua (2018). Chalk: The Art and Erasure of Cy Twombly. Melville House. p. 262. ISBN 9781612197180.
  9. ^ "Ein Leben unter dem Vulkan" [Interview: Life Under the Volcano]. FOCUS Online, No. 7 (1994) (in German). 1994-02-14. Retrieved 2020-03-05.
  10. ^ "The Art of Mourning". Retrieved 2020-03-06.
  11. ^ "Un gioiello nascosto" [A hidden jewel]. Capri Review (in Italian). Retrieved 2020-03-06.
  12. ^ "Gli italiani di Hollywood: il cinema italiano agli Academy Awards", di Silvia Bizio - Gremese editore 2002
  13. ^ Schede su MyMovies e Comingsoon [1] [2]