There is one way of being truly modern, of really being alive, and that is to understand history.
Donnino Rumi putting this into practice, that is by using this awareness of history, has given a most important legacy to the culture of today. For it is now a time of re-meditation of the past, where the long line of the historic avant guard, searching pathetically for a constant renewal of the language at any cost, is finished and even forgotten.
Instead, today, each of us, artist or not, can choose his past, identifying himself in a definite historical period, in a particular stylistic form, in a way of thinking.
This process is not, as many think, simply a question of revivals or of nostalgia, it is rather to do with extending our own existence beyond the determinism of the certain age in which we live, of not being slaves to fashion, of being free.
Given this, Donnino Rumi chose to stay free, also of the history. that he himself so lucidly choose. One needs only to run through his works, as through film clips, to understand that they are also in contradiction with the dictates of their time, for they extend towards another time, no longer historical but categorical.
The impression is of a man who tenaciously tried to extract from the reportary of historical forms all that which could be of use to him. In an age, such as this post war one, that is so heavily conditioned by fashion, Donnino Rumi and indeed Picasso and many other artists
remained free, choosing to put themselves in a dialectical position to the dominant style and taste.
Rumi was also pulled in this direction by a long <<incubation>> period which extended from 1925 to the 1950s, a period forced on him for reasons of work. This interval, seen in retrospect, can also be defined as useful, if it is true that it permitted him to take up again, specially in the years 1957-1959 in such a fervent, lucid and splendidly conscious way. ....