Francis DiFronzo: Proof of Lifeby Matthew Innis |
George Billis Gallery is pleased to present ‘Proof of Life,’ the gallery’s second solo exhibition of paintings by Southern California realist painter, Francis DiFronzo. This new body of work continues DiFronzo’s contemplation of the American West. ‘Proof of Life’ will be on view at the gallery through February 15th.
DiFronzo’s ethereal paintings depict imagined landscapes from a world of his own creation. His haunting but beautiful paintings alternate between reality and the surreal as they present desolate and mysterious places reminiscent of the iconic American West. DiFronzo creates from direct observation of the world and from images invented from his imagination. The final paintings are highly realistic images of the world which wander from familiar and mundane to haunting and surreal. Working in oil over watercolor, DiFronzo creates exquisitely detailed works with a moody atmospheric quality that draw the viewer. These are portraits – painted with a palpable reverence for their subjects.
Francis DiFronzo was born in November of 1969 in San Pedro, California. At a young age, he discovered that visual art had the ability to transport him to different places and eras. It was this experience coupled with his affinity for the craft that solidified his commitment to becoming a painter. After receiving his B.F.A in 1994 from the University of California, Fullerton, DiFronzo moved to Philadelphia where he continued his studies in drawing and painting at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, where he earned his M.F.A in 1996. DiFronzo’s acclaimed works are exhibited nationally and are in private collections throughout the United States. He has been awarded several prestigious grants including the Stobbart Foundation Fellowship in the Arts in 1998 and the Pew Fellowship in the Arts in 2004.