With great sadness we inform that Marco Grandi, director of the Lugano Festival of Festival, left us on July 21st, 2022.
Below we publish some thoughts collected by Aldo Audisio and Mireille Chiocca, former coordinator and president of the IAMF.
We will miss Marco forever, we will miss his way of dealing with problems with a strong personality, a little provocative and a little easy-going. However, always lucid and attentive to the positive solution.
Marco, left us on 21 July 2022 searching for new horizons, in the height of summer, while he was still thinking about a new edition of his Festival.
Marco has always directed the Lugano Festival dei Festival which he had created in 1993 with a simple formula, a sort of second degree for the public who could thus see the best films presented at the other Festivals. For a long time it also hosted temporary exhibitions (often of the Museomontagna), presented retrospectives and invited, as guests of honor, the main representatives of world mountaineering: from Bonatti to Hillary, to Diemberger, to Messner, Fava and many others.
Marco, for all of us, represented Swissness better than any other, that way of being, that lifestyle, that immediately made him classified as a Swiss citizen. In our roles as president and coordinator of the IAMF we have engaged in endless discussions with him, not only in the Assemblies or in the Board meetings but also in front of the meal of the recurring official (and non-official) lunches.
Marco, was already with us on 4 and 5 February 2000 – a faithful friend – when the International Alliance for Mountain Film – IAMF was founded in Turin in the Sala degli Stemmi of the Museomontagna on Monte dei Cappuccini. There were nine of us (eight festivals plus the Museum) and in those two days he collaborated positively to find the lines that would lead us to represent institutions from five continents in twenty years. It was like this for a long time, then for various reasons his attendance became less regular.
The old members remember a “mythical” full-day Assembly in Lugano – one of the most beautiful ever lived together -, actually on the top of Monte Lema, nestled between the Lugano and Maggiore lakes and the Luinese valleys, with a mix of discussion, lunch and magnificent views of Ticino.
Marco had always been passionate about the mountains and mountaineering. An expert on rock, ice and mixed climbing, he had continuously climbed the Alps, and was also an expert paraglider. He had been a member of the Scoiattoli dei Denti della Vecchia – a group of friends who are passionate about alpine climbs and climbing – of which he had been the leader.
Marco, was a member of the Cultural Commission of the Central Committee of the Swiss Alpine Club for a decade; for eight years he was responsible for technical education and culture of the Ticino section of the Swiss Alpine Club and, thanks to his knowledge of the sector’s cinema, he was called to various festival juries.
Marco, in recent years had reduced participation in IAMF meetings, his health prevented him from moving; the Assemblies lacked his proposals and his joyful and (sometimes) relentless and pleasant presence. Now that he has risen high, we who have known him will remember him with great affection: a friend forever.