DH Lawrence Lake Garda Centenary 1912 - 2012

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D.H. Lawrence 2012

In September 2012 it is the Centenary of D. H. Lawrence’s arrival in Lake Garda.  Considering the historical relevance that the author’s stay has had (and still has) in Gargnano for the entire community, the “Comitato per Gargnano Storica” is organizing, in collaboration with the Comune di Gargnano, a variety of events to celebrate this anniversary in the very best way.

As it’s widely known, Italy’s fascination has often stimulated many artists’ imagination, while, in some cases, their experiences on the Peninsula became a fundamental inspiration for the creation of their works. This is without doubt D. H. Lawrence’s case.

It was 1912 when he fell in love with Frieda von Richtofen, the wife of Ernest Weekley, his professor of French at Nottingham University. The couple decided to run away from the moral conventions of post Victorian England, searching for a free society and seeking to discover new interesting places and people, away from Eastwood, Lawrence’s mining village in the Midlands.
After a brief visit to Germany, Frieda’s home country, it was with great determination and profound desire to explore areas that were yet untouched by industrialisation, that the two headed south. So, in the summer of 1912, after a long walk through the Dolomites, they reached Italy.

Their first steps on the Italian soil were in Riva del Garda which at the time was under the rule of the Austrians. However, after only four days from their arrival, in a letter to David Garnett, dated 7 September 1912, Lawrence wrote: “Now we will be staying here in Riva. It is very beautiful and perfectly Italian – just five miles from the border.”

From Riva del Garda they moved to Gargnano where they lived from 18 September 1912 till 30 March 1913, in a furnished apartment on the first floor of Villa Igea, in Villa Hamlet. They then spent a brief period with the Capelli family, from 30 March to 11 April 1913, in San Gaudenzio, above Gargnano, on the road that brings to Muslone.

This long stay on the lake turned out to be very fruitful. It was in this “paradise”, as Lawrence defines it, that he finished Sons and Lovers, wrote Twilight in Italy and started The Lost Girl and The Sisters, which became The Rainbow, (1915), and developed further as Women in Love, (1920).
Equally important is the fact that it was on Lake Garda that Lawrence began his long-life journey, a “pilgrimage”,  both literally and metaphorically, which  led him always south, towards the sun.  

D.H. Lawrence 2012- Events Calendar

Untill Thursday September 27
Free admission

D.H. Lawrence Exhibition "D.H. Lawrence in Gargnano 1912-13"

Tuesday, September 18
Free of charge

Commemorates Lawrence's and Frieda's arrival in Gargnano 100 years ago - Guided walk

Wednesday, September 19
Free admission

“D.H. Lawrence, from Villa to San Gaudenzio” divulgative conference. An introduction to Lawrence in Gargnano organized by the Comitato per Gargnano Storica

Thrusday September 20
Free admission

Lake Garda: Gateway to D. H. Lawrence’s Voyage to the Sun First D. H. Lawrence International Symposium - Opening

Thursday, September 20
Free admission

Film showing dedicated to D.H. Lawrence: "Lady Chatterley"

Friday, September 21
Free admission

Concert for Lawrence’s Centenary in Gargnano
Songs based on poems by D. H. Lawrence by William Neil

Saturday, September 22
Free of charge

Guided walk on D.H. Lawrence's footsteps: Gargnano - San Gaudenzio - Muslone - Piovere - Gargnano

Sunday, September 23
Free admission

Film showing dedicated to D.H. Lawrence: "Priest of Love"

Download the Events Programme

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