How Prince Lorenzo De’ Medici Is Keeping The Medici Dynasty Alive

IMG_4695Photo Credit: Prince Lorenzo di Medici 

Last week, royalty descended upon Beverly Hills in the form of acclaimed artist and direct descendant of one of the most powerful and influential families in the world, Prince Lorenzo de’ Medici.  A Night of Medici, which takes place tonight at the Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills, will celebrate the Medici Dynasty with auction items such as select family heirlooms, works of art and a slew of royal experiences.

Prince Lorenzo spoke on the history and secrets of his family’s illustrious past. The Medicis were an Italian banking family and political dynasty that first began to gather prominence during the first half of the 15th century; they owned the largest bank in Europe, which helped them rise to political power in Florence until they eventually became monarchs in the 16th century. We chatted with Prince Lorenzo in advance of the event, who discussed his family’s rich heritage and how he’s doing the Medici name proud in modern day.

IMG_4700Photo Credit: Prince Lorenza di Medici 

What has being a Medici taught you?

Being a Medici has taught me that you need to always have vision and be forward thinking, to think about the prosperity of your business, but also to consider others in that equation in a philanthropic way. [The] school of thought was to provide capital for philanthropic profit. You use your wealth for prosperity of your community and the state, in addition to, your family for advancement in culture and in the humanities, fine arts and sciences. You need to give charity to other people in order to elevate society. Thus, [the name] doesn’t stand only for power or wealth, but also for the creation of prosperity and innovation for the community and the world around us.

How do you celebrate your culture and history on a daily basis?

I celebrate my culture and history mainly through creating art on a daily basis. I keep my culture and history alive with the varying types of mixed-media paintings and sculptures that I create as an artist which reference or directly feature my Medici ancestors. Additionally, I travel extensively and often give keynote talks or speeches on the Medici around the world about their patronage of the high fine arts and sciences, their philanthropy, their history, their vision, their creation of luxury as a standard, and the power of the Medici bank and banking.

I believe all of these things inspire those looking to become visionaries or looking to be more successful in life. My mission is to bring the legacy of the Medici current into modern times, to keep our legacy alive, and to continue the philanthropic efforts of my family and ancestors in banking, science, the arts. It’s a big mission, but I feel honored to be able to be the one trusted with this mission. Through my “Renaissance Pop” art and its unique style, which has won many awards and for which I have been a special guest at Art Monaco and Miami Art Basel (and many other art events and platforms), I am working to keep the Medici legacy modern and relevant by reaching the new generations.

Why was the Waldorf Astoria the right spot to celebrate your family heritage in Los Angeles?

The Waldorf Astoria – Beverly Hills is a “Palace of Medici.” It is today what would have been in Florence in the past, the equivalent of the “Palace Pitti”. It is the most beautiful and elegant hotel in Southern California. It has an energy that is modern, yet also expresses classic European luxury. This refined style very much compliments the Medici legacy as the Medici were the inventors of luxury. The Waldorf Astoria – Beverly Hills showcases that luxury today into a modern interpretation with incredible elegance and sophistication, while also including modern technology which is highly innovative, like the Medici. It is my opinion that Waldorf Astoria – Beverly Hills is the perfect compliment to the Medici name.

IMG_4696Photo Credit: Prince Lorenzo di Medici 

You’re offering off royal experiences at the event. What do those entail?

I decided to offer these “Royal Experiences” because I wanted to share the Medici collections and some of my extraordinary life with those who have an appreciation for heritage, culture, innovation, art and elegance. I think in the modern society of today, we need to reach out and become more inclusive when engaging with the public in order to share with people from all over the world. I think our internet and the various social networks have created a gap in experiences for people since many things now are only experienced virtually, and then authenticity becomes lost.

I’m not so active myself on the net. I am very social, but quite private. So by offering these “Royal Experiences,”it is a special opportunity for clients of the Waldorf Astoria and special guests at the Medici event to have and experience something extraordinary in my world through visiting properties owned by my family and having access to certain unique places, including experiencing various art venues, private buildings and special locations all while having fun, learning history, and learning about royalty and the “royal ways” of seeing and doing things.

What does a day in your life look like?

I travel on at least 70 different international flights a year. I’m lucky to be able to travel so much. I enjoy traveling tremendously. And, being from the Medici family I often have access to many unusual and extraordinary locations and events. People want to share with me. It’s a beautiful gift that my family has given to me in being a Medici.

I spend a lot of time with my family. I have a beautiful 3-year old princess daughter, named Maddalena after the daughter of Lorenzo de’ Medici aka “Lorenzo The Magnificent.” I also perform a lot of charity organization work, both on boards and through financial support and charity functions for many international organizations. I spend at least 50% of my time regularly on philanthropy, working to inspire others and help change the world for the better.

You spoke to the history and secrets of the Medici dynasty. What would some of those be for those who can not attend your event?

The Medici dynasty has influenced almost everything you can think of. Some secrets include that the famous perfume Chanel No. 5 made by fashion House Chanel, Coco Chanel, was actually a secret perfume recipe created by my ancestor Catherine de’ Medici which Coco came upon and used to create her ultra famous modern scent.

Another, that when Galileo first discovered the stars in the heavens and The Milky Way Galaxy, that the first stars ever seen were called “Medici” stars in Latin by Galileo since the Medici had funded the invention of the telescope by Galileo. Also, that Leonardo da Vinci, a Medici benefactor, was the first ever vegetarian. Da Vinci influenced the development of vegetables and use of vegetables and herbs for diet and medicinal purposes. During the Renaissance time, Da Vinci worked diligently with the universities to advance research for health and the medical sciences.

IMG_4697Photo Credit: Prince Lorenzo di Medici 

What is the most important thing you would like others to know about the history and present of the Medicis?

The Medici are one of the 10 most influential families in the world in history for innovations in the arts, sciences, and banking: [They] literally changed the world. The Medici are committed to giving a good direction in the world and came to a period of “enlightenment” from a period of great darkness and truly put the concept of the “individual” into the world by recognizing and acknowledging the “ethos” and individual soul of every human being, believing that every human being held value and deserved respect.

The Medici were so wise and created individual law protections and freedom for the arts and sciences. They were the first that gave freedom and protection to the artist(s) to create the most beautiful art pieces. Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and Galileo were all benefactors. The Medici also invented modern banking through the creation of checks, branch banking, and the general ledger system which led to a safer society since money could be kept in banks securely and transferred between parties securely without requiring a physical transfer of money between parties and over great distances. This is something we are still grateful for today.

Finally, I think the Medici have always had a great sense for living in the present, while striving for a better tomorrow. It has often been said in my family, “Enjoy today for its greatness, as we never know what tomorrow will bring.” [We] believe it is important to live well in the present while looking towards and investing in the future. Carpe Diem.