As far back as Gloria Cigolini can recall, creativity has been her healer, her solace, her friend and joy. This experience of awakening to life through creativity permeates all her work.
Born prematurely and later diagnosed with a life-threatening childhood disease, Cigolini spent much of her early youth in hospitals. After surviving several near death experiences, Cigolini remembers most vividly her intense desire to break free and recover. Creative projects she completed while a patient opened up a world of joy and healing. She knew she would commit her life to painting and drawing. Growing up, Cigolini spent much time at the Metropolitan Museum of Art where the works of Matisse and Bonnard greatly influenced her.
She attended New York's School of Visual Arts, and afterwards worked professionally as a textile designer. Everything changed, however, with the sudden death of a close friend, reconfirming the brevity and uncertainty of life. Changing her course, Cigolini moved to Paris to realize her dream of further study and painting. In Paris, she studied at The Louvre and Paris American Academy, steeping herself in art history and architecture.
Her painting teacher, Monsieur Arnaud D'Hauterives, recipient of the coveted Legion of Honour Award in 1977 and a student of Balthus, introduced her to several Salons. In less than a year she was invited to exhibit with the Salon de Comparison and the Salon Des Artistes Francais, winning an award at the Grand Palais in the Artistes Francais 1978 exhibition for her large canvas, 'Moving On.' She returned to New York earning other awards: first place at the Duncan Gallery Prix de New York 1979 exhibition, and the Mamaroneck Artists Guild 1980 juried exhibition.
Continuing to be influenced by the painting style of D'Hauterives and Balthus, she began to layer her canvasses with thin washes, working from dark to light, and for the first time introduced female figures into her room interiors; which ultimately became her acclaimed 'Woman Series.' This provocative archetypal study of women, as a psychological review, earned her a show at New York's Hansen - Feurman Gallery on 57th St., and a rave review in Art Speaks. Returning to Europe again in 1982, this time to the Mediterranean, she experienced the Macchiaioli painters of Tuscany. These works had a profound effect and influenced her in the creation of a successful series capturing this sun-drenched region. Received enthusiastically, the series was shown in New York and in the Midwest at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art, Columbus Ohio Museum, and Indianapolis Museum. The series also appeared on Dariaz Suisse Editions notecards for distribution in Europe, as well as being in demand by area art dealers and decorators. Gloria Cigolini-DePietro recieved her masters degree in Art Therapy in 2005. She is working with emotionally disadvantaged youth using art as a way to heal and change debilitating patterns. She continues to paint and invites you to see her images at FINEARTAMERICA.COM
'I have never tried to imitate life, instead give life to creative energy on canvas.'