Mario Calvano is a Los Angeles based artist, whose focus is primarily on figurative painting. He began his career after receiving a B.A. in Fine Arts from California State University, Northridge. He has a twenty-five year exhibition history which includes: “Perceptions”, Los Angeles County Museum of Art; “Images of Hope”, Santa Monica Museum of Art; “Going Global”, Carnagie Art Museum, Oxnard; “Chicano Art for our Millenium”, Southwest Museum, Mesa, Arizona, and “First Voices from the Vaults: Recent Acquisitions”, Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum, Chicago, Illinois.
His work is featured in the collections of: The Los Angeles County Museum of Art; The Carnegie Museum, Oxnard; The Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum; The Vatican; and many prestigious private collections.
In painting his elegant canvases, Calvano has drawn upon a pastiche of influences: flat colors and tumultuous compositions of comic books and pop art, work by the first generation of Los Angeles Chicano/a artists, a Catholic up-bringing, films by Federico Fellini, and forties movie posters and Mexican calendar art. “One hopes to achieve”, notes Calvano, “a cultural enlightenment that can celebrate the richness of the Chicano/Latino traditions and heritage and yet engage in a dialog that more appropriately reflects those traditions within a constantly changing global context”.
Mario Calvano is committed to traditional painting as his preferred media of expression. By adopting a representational art style, reminicent of the Renaissance manner, he intentionally liberated himself from dealing with questions of “What is art?” and “Is this art?” Freed by his realistic style from questions of the nature of art, Calvano now uses beauty, parody and irreverent allegory to confront personal eccentricities, themes of transformation and the affairs of daily life.