Mario Belvedere stood in the center of the wood floor pool of the Payson Healing Arts Center watching his two sons work together in perfect harmony to hang his large colorful Picasso-Gauguin-like paintings on the wall.
“They are both artists themselves,” he said of his sons. “They work perfectly together.”
Belvedere has painted with a passion since 1973. The paintings on show from Aug. 31 to Sept. 7 at the Healing Arts Center represent work he did in the mid-1990s.
This particular set of paintings came from Belvedere’s fascination with the culture, uniqueness, music and colors of the Masai people from Africa, he said. He has never been to the continent, but feels an affinity with the Masai.
Belvedere attributes his artistic influence from Amedeo Modigliani and Botticelli.
These paintings have remained hidden in the back of his studio until now. He said he picked these paintings because of his sons.
“My son said, ‘Isn’t it time for these to come out?’” said Belvedere.
On the walls stylistic heads tilt back with pronounced lips and eyes painted bright colors.
“I love color,” said Belvedere.
The artist was born in Sicily and lived on the East Coast, but moved to Pine in 2005.
He now paints every day.
Belvedere’s one-man show opened on Saturday, Aug. 31 and will remain up for the week at 616 North Beeline Highway.
Gallery hours are Wednesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and is closed Sunday through Tuesday.
Belvedere invites anyone interested to give him a call, he would be happy to present information on his work.
Phone: (928) 978-5075. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.