Ancient Inspirations: Paintings by Vincent Baldassano

Mila Tenaglia (May 04, 2016)
Inspired by his time as a visiting artist at the American Academy in Rome, Vincent Baldassano’s exhibition showcases the rich history and beautiful antiquity of this Italian city.

The artist was strongly influenced and inspired by the churches, temples, and the ancient Mithraic sites that he visited during his time in Rome.  In these paintings one can see the similarities between Baldassano’s depictions and some of Rome’s most famous ancient structures, such as the Pantheon.

Baldassano also attributes much of his inspiration to his Italian-American culture and his
connection to Italy; his mother was born in Puglia near Foggia, and his father’s family was from Sciacca in Sicily. 

The paintings in this exhibition depict the ancient arches that can be found in Rome and throughout Italy. Baldassano  uses materials such as burlap and rice paper to create a unique texture and look. By mixing watercolor with acrylic, Baldassano also creates vibrant, colorful shapes that merge together. 

Baldassano did not  expect to create these works during his time in Rome,  bringing with him a few brushes and some gouache paints. He had no idea that in 2012 the visions of these arches would appear in his mind. He adds that his time in Italy was not the only inspiration for these works: he credits some twenty years creating other work that also showcased similar shapes. 

The works in Ancient Inspirations differ from his others because of Baldassano’s use of the unique cutouts of shapes that are present in these paintings.

The exhibition will be open till May 13, 2016


Organizing Institution: Calandra Italian American Institute