Lucio Pozzi was born in 1935 in Milan, Italy. After living a few years in Rome, where he studied architecture, he came to the United States in 1962, as a guest of the Harvard International Summer Seminar. He then settled in New York and took the US citizenship. He now shares his time between his Hudson (NY) and Valeggio s/M (Verona) studios.
In 1978 the Museum of Modern Art, New York, exhibited his early videotapes in one of the first single-artist exhibitions of the Projects:Video series. He occasionally writes and has taught at the Cooper Union, Yale Graduate Sculpture Program, Princeton University and the Maryland Institute of Art. He currently is an instructor at the MFA and BFA programs of the School of Visual Arts, in New York.
Pozzi is a secretly subversive artist. The first scandal came in 1978 in the temple of Conceptualism, the John Weber Gallery in New York, when he exhibited landscape watercolors a few months after having presented a giant installation of walls and photographs in the same space. When he then assembled the first Provocation Show, in 1980, again at Weber’s, the critical response was so embarrassed that hardly anyone dared comment. Many thought Weber and Pozzi had gone mad. The show consisted of 80 works all related to painting but radically different from one another in form and materials. That show was followed by large exhibitions of the same kind in public museums and private galleries: at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, in Bielefeld and Karlsruhe, at Studio Carlo Grossetti, Milano, and in 1984 in a three-gallery show in New York (Leo Castelli, John Weber, Susan Caldwell). Still now, Provocation Shows of Pozzi’s art are occasionally set up by some museums and galleries, while exhibitions of only single families of work also continue.
It seems that since those years many diversified artists’ practices have been accepted in the artworld, but Pozzi’s persistence in painting both abstract and representational works, constructing photographic entities and concurrently producing performances and building installations and making videotapes appears to be receiving interest mostly among the very youngest generations.
His teaching is another way for him to question and probe the fabric of modern art making, in a subtle, individual, case by case dialogue, a capillary manner of guerrilla infiltration instead of shouting sensational slogans.
His art is represented in the collections of The New York Public Library; The Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; The Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto; The Fogg Museum, Cambridge Mass.; Centro per l’Arte Contemporanea Luigi Pecci, Prato, Italy; Giuseppe Panza Di Biumo, Lugano, Switzerland; Herbert and Dorothy Vogel, New York; PS1 Contemporary Art Center, New York; Museum of New Art, Detroit, MI.; Zimmerli Art Museum, New Brunswick, NJ.; Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, MI; Hartford Atheneum, Hartford, CT; Marzona sculpture park, Italy; Portofino Sculpture Museum, Italy; Museo de Bellas Artes, Buenos Aires, University of California Art Museum (Berkeley), Miami Art Museum, Miami, Florida; Collezione Maramotti, Reggio Emilia, Italy; Fondazione Cariverona, Verona, Italy, and in various private and corporate collections.
Pozzi was honored with a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in 1983. He received a Master Honoris Causa from the Accademia di Verona, Italy, in 2010.
Retrospectives of his art were held at Kunsthalle Bielefeld (1982) and Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe (1983), Germany, and at the Museum of New Art (2001), Detroit, MI, Kalamazoo Institute of Art, Michigan (2002); Works on Paper, Mus. Contemp. Art, Genova Italy, 2005. His work has been presented at Documenta 6 (1977) and at the Venice Biennale (American Pavilion) in 1980.