14/06/16 Aggiornato il:

Marc Dalessio, 1972 | Naturalistic painter



Marc Dalessio, born in Los Angeles, California, is a naturalistic painter who at a young age has established himself as one of the foremost plein-air painters working today.
Marc’s artistic training began at the University of California at Santa Cruz where he majored in biology and fine art.


After graduating Phi Beta Kappa in 1992, he moved to Florence, Italy and trained as a portraitist for four years under Charles Cecil at his atelier. Charles H. Cecil Studios is a school of fine art that offers a thorough training in the traditional techniques of naturalistic drawing and painting. Upon completion of his first year, Marc was awarded a full scholarship, and after finishing the full course, he became an advanced painting instructor at the school.












My foundation in fine art began at the University of California at Santa Cruz where I originally studied biology. The excellent art instructors Patrick Ahern and Hardy Hanson introduced me to plein air landscape painting and academic drawing, respectively.
After finishing Phi Beta Kappa in 1992 I moved to Italy and trained at Charles H. Cecil Studios in Florence from 1992 to 1996. Cecil Studios is a traditional painting atelier directly descended, via R. H. Ives Gammell and William Paxton, to the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris under Jean-Léon Gérôme. Today the school maintains a rigorous drawing and painting curriculum similar to the Academies of 19th-Century Europe.
Cecil taught us the Nietzschean idea of the dichotomy of Apollonian and Dionysian elements in art. The premise is that great art is the result of the merging of strong emotion and passion with analytical precision and dexterous skill, honed through years of monotonous and repetitive study.
During my time in Florence I was also introduced to the writings of the Renaissance Neoplatonists. ‘The Oration on the Dignity of Man” by Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, especially, had a profound influence on me as a young artist.
This short treatise describes God’s creation of man so that “there be some creature to comprehend the significance of so vast an achievement, love its infinite beauty, and stand in awe at its grandeur”. While the literal view on this is that God created man to marvel at God’s work, my art is based on a more secular reading of the text: The artist is nature revering itself. As such, the painter should attempt to avoid developing any personal style in their work. My painting is attempt at letting nature depict itself without overt interference of personality or ego.
While aware of the impossibility of such an endeavor, I’ve always felt that an important duty of the poet today is to direct a return a return to humility towards, reflection on, and study of, the natural world. This return to finding inspiration in the world around us, as well as building a foundation for art based on the observation of nature, are important first steps towards building an environmentally sustainable future for humanity.
I created this blog to share information about techniques and materials, as well as to keep people updated on my paintings and exhibitions. Your comments are appreciated.
















































Marc Dalessio è un artista nel significato più classico del termine, quello per cui la definizione di artista comprende, non soltanto la preparazione tecnica, la capacità comunicativa e la forza espressiva, ma anche le conoscenze scientifiche, la manualità, l’ingegno, la forza fisica e psicologica indispensabile per affrontare lunghe ore di lavoro en plein air.
La pittura calda e attenta di Dalessio indaga la realtà delle cose, della natura che lo circonda, attraverso punti di vista a volte inusuali.
E’un artista nuovo, ma saldamente radicato alla tradizione pittorica del XIX sec.
Dalessio nasce in California e a soli vent’anni, appena conclusi gli studi in Arte e Biologia, si trasferisce a Firenze, al fine di perfezionare le tecniche pittoriche classiche. Esegue il suo apprendistato presso l’atelier di Charles H. Cecil in Borgo San Frediano, dove apprende le antiche tecniche di preparazione dei colori attraverso la macinatura dei migliori pigmenti e la stesura della tela grezza.
Sceglie Firenze come città adottiva e spesso la elegge protagonista delle sue opere.
La visione e la pennellata dell’artista propongono sulla tela una traduzione di Firenze e delle sue periferie che, pur non trascendendo dalla realtà del soggetto dipinto, restituiscono nobiltà alle architetture e alla vita lavorativa della città, sottraendola dalla coltre del quotidiano.
Con la sua arte Dalessio è riuscito a stregare nuove ed illustri committenze che amano avere i suoi paesaggi e ritratti.
Attualmente Dalessio si divide tra il suo studio in Piazza Donatello, l’insegnamento alla The Florence Accademy of Art situata nel cuore della città, e la partecipazione al gruppo artistico Ritratto, fondato insieme a pittori, scultori e fotografi provenienti da tutto il mondo. Dalessio è un artista maturo che già dagli anni Novanta espone e collabora con importanti gallerie quali la Grenning Gallery di New York e la WH Patterson Gallery.