Born in California but currently residing and creating his art in New York, Michael Bevilacqua’s prolific body of works are known for being “diaries” on canvas. In his earlier series, the play and use of vibrant colors in endless combinations were trademarks. His last show covered by AF in Chelsea at Kravets | Wehby last March 29, 2012 – was a departure from that as it was mostly in chrome and black. But customary in the Bevilacqua style, it contained images and words recalling a particular time, place, moment and especially music that manifests into his oeuvre.
Why the departure from color? Michael explains, ”It was just fatigued in various hues and colors. Sort of like the child catcher in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang tempted the children with ice cream and lollipops – and all free today – but SNAP! When the children stepped into the gorgeous painted ice cream truck, it was just a black and rusty cage! I’m just not feeling the color, that’s all.”
So, what fuels his inspiration particularly when he travels? The artist takes to the streets to find it as he candidly shares that, “It is the streets and the kids I meet. I rarely go to museums when I travel, but feel it more important to get a pulse on the popular culture side of life.” There is an insouciant yet edgy playful spirit of urban graffiti genre in his latest works exhibited previously at Gering Lopez Gallery in midtown Manhattan entitled “An Idea For Living”.
However, music is key when Bevilacqua paints in his studio that he blast out all the beats that infuse itself into the canvas. He recalls his earliest memory about music being part of his life, “Since I was very young there was either a radio or turntable spinning beats. My first record I ever bought was Elvis Presley’s “Let’s Be Friends” and my mom and dad played a lot of records – Frank Sinatra, Miles Davis, Herb Alpert, Glenn Campbell, etc.”
The essential factor to appreciate Bevilacqua’s work has been about the extension of the artist’s experience and memories thoughtfully recorded on the canvas. It continues to resonate and draw you in to be part of his diary that is filled with so much color. Whatever shade it may be, nothing is better than a good story up there on the canvas for all to read.
Michael Bevilacqua’s latest exhibit was “An Idea For Living” at Gering Lopez Gallery. 730 Fifth Avenue. New York, NY 10019. It was on view last July 12 – August 24, 2012. His new show will be in Copenhagen, Denmark – Bevilacqua: Factory to Factory at Peter Amby Gallery. September 7 – October 13, 2012.
article by: Oscar A. Laluyan
images courtesy of the artist, Michael Bevilacqua