Donna Festa

Black Tie, oil on wood, 6 x 6inBlue Bowtie, oil on wood, 4 x 5inBrother and Sister, oil on wood, 4 x 5inMan with One Eye, oil on panel, 6 x 6in
White Collar, oil on panel, 6 x 6in, SOLDWoman with Thinning Hair, oil on panel, 6 x 6inBlack Suit, oil on panel, 6 x 6inBlack Tie, White Shirt, oil on panel, 6 x 6in
Woman with Short White Hair, oil on panel, 6 x 6inInjured Woman, oil on panel, 6 x 6inWhite Bag, oil on panel, 4 x 6inThoughts, oil on panel, 4 x 4in


Donna Festa has paintings in both public and private collections including the State Museum of Pennsylvania and Robert Fontaine Gallery in Miami, Florida. Her work was published in the 2004 Mid-Atlantic region issue of New American Paintings and Manifest INPA, vol.1 and vol. 2, 2011. She has worked for museums, art centers and public school systems teaching art and developed scholarship and after school arts programs for at risk children in Holyoke, Massachusetts through the Children's Museum at Holyoke. Donna taught as an adjunct professor within the art department of Delaware County Community College in Media, PA for 7 years and now lives in Maine.

Donna is a graduate of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where she earned a four year certificate in painting, the University of the Arts also in Philadelphia where she received a BFA in painting with teacher certification and graduated Summa Cum Laude, and the University of Hartford in Hartford, Connecticut where she received an MFA in painting.

Artist's Statement 

We wear our lives on our faces. These portraits of people I’ve known or who have caught my eye each tell a story in their own quiet way.

Using oil on wood, each painting is made quickly, in one sitting, in order to keep the loose, fresh quality of a sketch. The size is intentionally small in purposeful contrast with the greedy, loud and overstuffed society reflected directly in much contemporary art of recent decades. I am attached in a visceral way to the fluidity of oil paint and the nuanced textural and lighting effects it facilitates, as well as traditions in portrait painting, although I am effected, in my attempts to capture glimpses of complex characters by the post-Freudian dissolution of the self in the age of virtual reality.

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