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Introduction to Robert Maniscalco Gallery Art

Artist Statement

I believe artists are our conscience, the teachers of society. The best artists can go deep within themselves to bring up the treasures, usually in the form of questions, which form a blueprint for a meaningful creative life. As an professional creative, I am always looking for ways to bring meaning and clarity into the world, to use my God given talent to inquire and to edify. Simply put, I love putting ideas and things together in ways that please and make sense to me. ​So, I share my journey, finding and expressing insight any way I can, to whoever is willing to engage in our shared time together on this planet, interconnected on our human journey. I do this through painting, writing, acting/directing, music/composing and teaching.

My goal as a visual artist, a painter, is to explore the full range of my medium, which is light. I have developed several bodies of work exploring a variety of structures and subjects, but the poetry of light on form keeps finding its way into my work. Light is the force which reveals the subtleties of nature, particularly the human condition, uncovering what it means to be human in our journey toward the light. This often-dramatic journey toward the light is a theme which runs through all my work, both literally and figuratively. We are all on a journey of survival and wonder. Together, we find ways to make the best of what we are given. Often there is struggle, heartbreak, loss. But there is always a new dawn that awaits us if we can hold on till then.

With this in mind, I plow the fields of portraiture, landscape and still life, surrealism, whatever moves me. What I keep coming back to is the many creative ways we find to overcome and grow from our shared journey through adversity into the light. For instance, I am continuing a series of paintings called The Quench Project begun during my vision trip to Haiti in November 2014, focused on desire and the ways we quench it. Also, I am continuing my Faces of the Lowcountry series of paintings, which is an exploration of the joy and tenacity of the Gullah people as they continue to define and celebrate their identity, a cultural symbol of survival and abundant hope for all people. I also have been into an Iconic Charleston Series, which is all about what makes my home of Charleston so magical for me. Another body of work, consisting of highly chromatic figurative renderings, called Chromo Sapient, is intended to push the envelope of color, while maintaining the chiaroscuro – the illusion of light on form. Expressive realism may be my dharma but I have also recently begun to explore the possibilities of narrative and poetry using color and light to transport the viewer of my work into other dimensions of reality. I am also the doppelganger of NETI, who is that he is not.

I also consider my work as a commission portrait artist a big part of my artistic journey. In fact, I am probably best known for my portraits. Together with my non commission portrait work, my journey can be summed up with an honest curiosity and respect for what makes nature and people tick. That’s what feeds my soul. I invite you to read my Bio for more about my story and the forces that drive my creative engine.

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