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This elegant collection commemorates the timeless words and inspired thoughts of Dominique de Menil, a woman whose life's task was to inspire a better world. With her husband John, Dominique founded the inter-religious Rothko Chapel in Houston in 1971. The de Menils' dream was for the Chapel to promote interfaith dialogue, human rights, and the arts. They famously commissioned the artist Mark Rothko to create a suite of paintings specifically for the Chapel. Gathered here is a selection of de Menil's thought-provoking speeches, interviews, letters, and other commentaries, beginning with her inaugural address for the Rothko Chapel and concluding with remarks she offered at a human rights award ceremony in 1997. The writings testify to de Menil's profound belief in the transcendent dimension of life and in the motivating power of the principles of truth and justice. More relevant today than ever, her visionary ideas seem both prescient and deeply important in the strife-ridden world of the 21st century.
Dominique de Menil (1908-1997), an American heiress to the Schlumberger Limited oil-equipment fortune, was devoted to art and human rights. Her legacy includes the Menil Collection Museum and Rothko Chapel in Houston.