Gallery Essay

Earlier this semester, my class was brought to Cohen Gallery to view the work of an artist, Mario Prisco. He is a renowned artist, most noticeable by his watercolor paintings . Prisco is known from being the former Dean of the Alfred University School and is respected and greatly admired by students. He wishes to try and help struggling students find their own sense of style in art.

Prisco’s works were presented in Cohen Gallery thanks to the Hornell Community Arts Center. His art pieces that were shown are ones old and new that he created to show his progress as an artist, from his first figure drawing at the age of 17 to more complex works that are currently underway.

The works featured in the gallery included many of his watercolor paintings and drawings of the human figure. The watercolor pieces often had many geometric shapes to create larger imaginary sceneries and landscapes. At first glance, may of the works seemed similar due to the repetition . However, upon closer inspection, each painting contained very intricate details and color schemes. They gave off a feeling of an almost joy-like state due to all the bright colors. His final works seemed very clear and defined where the the lines are placed. One of the artists that Prisco admires and would like to imitate in his art is Picasso. Picasso’s influence is most evident in the watercolor pieces. They create an almost abstract feeling.

Prisco’s works of the human body were drawings of the female body in the nude. Each drawing was viewed and drawn from a different perspective. His works give of the sense of space and depth with the way the form, the way  body is laying, and the shadowing. Many different line weights are used to put emphasis on some areas compared to others. He wanted the viewer to focus on these parts by making bolder lines. Also, the way the faces of the people were drawn and the poses of each clearly portray emotion and allows the audience to feel what they see in his images. They gave a feeling of sadness.

Mario Prisco has been a very influential artist to many people and will continue to be throughout his life, since his works are well-known. Many of his works are unique and almost all give off different emotions, depending on how the artist felt at the time.  He didn’t plan on being an artist and working so hard to make his name known to others when he was young. A little hard work can go a long way.

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