Pietro Antonio "Tony" Narducci


1915
Born in Pietrocarmela, Italy on February 1, 1915.

1929
Immigrates to the United States to join up with his father. Resides in Boonton, New Jersey.

1933
Enrolls in day and evening fine art classes at the Leonardo da Vinci Art School in New York City, studying painting, sculpture and fresco.

1934
Moves to New York City.

1935
Exhibits at the Leonardo da Vinci Art School, and is awarded three First Prizes in painting, sculpture and fresco composition.

1936
Studies sculpture at the Beaux Arts Institute. At age 21, shows in a group exhibition with Thomas Benton, Isamu Noguchi, Joseph Stella, Onorio Ruotola, and A. Piccirilli. Meets Pietro Lazzari, Ugo Galluzzi and Conrad Marco-Relli.

1937
Joins the Works Progress Administration's (WPA), Federal Art Project -- Easel Painting Division. Joins artist's union.

1938
Teaches at the Leonardo da Vinci Art School, and exhibits at the 57th Street Contemporary Art Gallery in New York City. Changes to the Federal Art Project -- Mural Painting Division.

1939
Graduates from the Leonardo da Vinci Art School. Nominated for the "Prix de Rome" award. Exhibits his award-nominated fresco at the Grand Central Gallery in New York City.

1940
Moves to his first studio on 34th Street in New York City. Spends the summer at Fort Lee Castle with Conrad Marca-Relli and meets Elaine DeKooning there. Becomes part of the "Artist’s Club".

1941
Has studio on 5th Avenue and 31st Street in New York City. Works for Bernardini Studio in New York City.

1942
Accepts painting and sculpture commissions for Mr. Silverman at Studio One, 28th Street and Lexington Avenue in New York City.

1943
Marries Muriel Koud, a classical ballet dancer. John Sandhuser, the curator of the Guggenheim Museum in New York City at the time, is the best man at the wedding. Daughter Antoinette is born.

1944
Receives induction papers, and attempts to sign up with U.S. Army Air Force. Due to a language problem, he ends up in an employment line for American Airlines, where he is hired as a graphic designer and painter. While employed with American Airlines, he designs a version of American Airlines' eagle logo. Daughter Alexandra is born.

1946
John Sandhauser takes Narducci's abstractions to Guggenheim Museum with an excellent reception to his work.

1948-1951
Leaves American Airlines after a knee injury and surgery. Returns to Boonton, New Jersey, where he owns and operates an antique store. Continues to paint and sculpt. Son William (Billy) is born.


1952
Divorces Muriel. Son Billy is killed, and daughter Alexandra is seriously injured, in an automobile accident in New York City. While walking on 8th Street and University Place, in Greenwich Village in New York City, he meets an old art friend, George Spaventa. Spaventa has just returned from Paris where he was studying art on the G.I. Bill. Spaventa tells him, "We’re meeting over at the Cedar now", and he takes him to the Cedar Bar across the street. Narducci becomes part of the artist's group at the Cedar Bar. There he becomes friends with Bill de Kooning, Jackson Pollack, Landes Lewitin, Franz Kline, et al. Franz and "Tony" become particularly close friends.


1954
Experiments with sound compositions using reel-to-reel tape compositions. Composes "Sacra Mantra". Orchestrates self-made sounds and "natural" sounds. Begins "cosmic" series. Works on large oil painting, "Nebula".

1955
Approached by art dealer Leo Castelli at the Cedar Bar, and asked to show his work, he tells Castelli he is "not ready".


1956
Continues with abstract expressionism. Begins buying electronic equipment to experiment with electronic painting.

1957
Moves to a new studio and gallery in Denville, New Jersey. Names it PAN (from Pietro Antonio Narducci) Galleries. Purchases signal generator, audio-generator.

1958-1959
Designs a video synthesizer for electronic painting and sculpture work, using a TV-FM sweep generator and marker, an Emerson color TV, and silicon cells.


1960-1970
Studio at 7 East Main Street in Denville, New Jersey with small gallery added.


1969-1971
Moves studio across street. Opens an art school called "The PAN Art Institute of Painting, Drawing, and Sculpture".


1970-1985
Continues with abstract canvas painting and experimentation with organic audio sounds and video electronic painting and sculpture, using elements of nature and captured sunlight as the painting media. Teaches high school art students and private art students.


1985-1999
Opens the PAN Museum of Modern Art as a "working museum" to show work-in-progress. Breakthrough to the "next step" into pure intuitive aesthetics from abstract expressionism to what Narducci calls, "quintessential aesthetics" painting. Invents a new technique for painting using acrylics, black ink, rainwater and ammonia (hydrogen and nitrogen). Narducci says this completes his life-long search "to find a way to enter nature from the back door." Starts with works on paper, moving to small canvases, and ultimately to large canvas works.

1999
Dies on March 1, 1999 in Morristown, New Jersey, after a short illness. He continued to create full-time until three months prior to his death.

Additional details garnered from Narducci's notes, and recollections of friends and relatives