Gino De Dominicis (1947-1998) was an extraordinary Italian artist in terms of the sublime level of his works, but also in terms of his conscious ‘eccentricity’ with regard to the art world. A controversial and mystifying figure, even the news of his death was greeted with suspicion, as for years earlier he had reported his own demise in the mock conclusion to a biographical essay.
His first show was at Rome's Galleria L'Attico in 1969. In the late 1970s he started collaborating with Galleria Emilio Mazzoli in Modena, where he had his last show in 1998. De Dominicis first appearance in the Venice Biennale in 1972 included a young man with Down's syndrome as an element in an installation; in 1993 he announced that his tempera-and-gold-on-panel paintings could not be considered for Biennale prizes; in 1995 he publicly declined to appear at all. De Dominicis' work has influenced many younger Italian artists, such as Maurizio Cattelan, Paola Pivi, Pietro Roccasalva and Diego Perrone.
In 1999 Harald Szeemann dedicated him an exhibition in the 48th Venice Biennale. In 2010, the first big retrospective of the work of De Dominicis, curated by Achille Bonito Olivawas held at MAXXI in Rome, as inaugural exhibition of the museum. In 2011, the Catalogue Raisonné of the artist by Italo Tomassoni was published in Italian/English edition by SKIRA.