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Maria T. Niforatos

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I grew up in a predominatly Italian neighborhood in Newark, New Jersey in the 50 's and 60's, the daughter of Greek-Italian parents. The smell of lasagna filled our house as well as the sound of Italian, Greek and broken-English. I began d rawing at the age of three. Faces have always fascinated me and I remember spen ding hours drawing them from my imagination. I completed my first comissioned p ortrait at the age of fourteen.

Attending Arts High School in Newark provided me with the opportunity to refine my technique and I received encouragement from the artists/instructors there. I t wasn't until my junior year at Rutgers University in Newark that I became awar e of artists and art world of New York City.

After graduating from Rutgers in 1972 I spent several months in Greece, my fathe r's homeland. Staying with a Greek family exposed me to the richness of my heri tage - the language, customs, and culture. The experience had a great effect on my creative vision.

In the early to mid 70's I spent time in the art galleries in Soho, looking at a rtwork. My mentor at the time was Al Hansen, who introduced me to gallery owne r Holly Solomon, artists Andy Warhol, John Lennon and Yoko Ono. We were all involved the the Avant Garde Art Festival at the time. I had the op portunity to show artwork alongside such artists as Larry Rivers and to study dr awing with Milton Avery at the Art Student's League.

My travels took me to the Midwest, where I had a one-woman show at the Tweed Gal lery in Northfield, Wisconsin. After the gallery purchased one of my works I fe lt encouraged to contnue showing but missed the energy of New york city.

Upon returning to the East Coast, I began my own business as an artist's model. I found modelling enhanced my own drawing skills, putting me in touch with how weight was distributed during various poses.

Between 1979-1989 I opened up and ran an art supply and custom framing business in Clinton, N.J. During that time I was able to produce a large body of work, l earn about art materials and picture framing, and meet quite a few artists. Eve ntually I opened up a gallery, displaying several artworks including my own, and using the space to teach art. In 1986 a handfull of area artists and I formed the Hunterdon Art Alliance, where artists could meet, discuss their work and hav e group shows.

Over the years I've become increasingly interested in metaphysics. In 1986 I pa rticipated int he "Firewalk Experience" with Anthony Robbins, which expanded my ideas of what is possible; it initiated a series of self-discoveries that led to new creative ideas.


W O R K S O N P A P E R / C A N V A S / S C U L P T U R E

I work with various media including watercolors, gouache, acrylics, clay, paper mache, and pencil. The waterbased media especially allows me freedom of improvi sation and uninterrupted flow of imagery from my unconscious.

The image of woman is an endless source of personal expression for me. The form s I create express emotional states more tha physical reality. They can be call ed "portraits of the mind".

They express the sensual female nature tempered with the stronger masculine qual ities. THeir beauty transcends the physical and expresses a deeper spiritual fu llness. THe women are initiators yet reflective, often appearing androgenous. While quite contemporary, they possess classic elements of other cultures and ci vilizations. They are multi-dimentional; exotic, erotic, tribal, mythical, myst ical, exuberent, and pasionate. They are self-contained and set their own stand ars of beauty. They are alluring yet formidable. They love to entertain the vi ewer, and are not afraid to reveal their spirit.

S E L E C T E D E X H I B I T I O N S O F A R T W O R K

1971   Newark Museum, Newark, N.J.
1974   Tweed Gallery, Northfield, Wisconsin
1975   Avant Garde Art Festival, Manhattan, N.Y.C
1976   Avant Garde Art Festival, So. Street Seaport, N.Y.C.
1986   Hunterdon Art Center, Clinton, N.J.
1987   Riverside Gallery, Clinton, N.J.
1987   Hunterdon Art Center, Clinton, N.J.
1988   Kings Road Vinyard, Asbury, N.J.
1989   Havana Restaurant, New Hope, Pa.
1989   Joy Kreves Gallery, Frenchtown, N.J.
1989   Larson-Dulman Gallery, New Hope, Pa.
1990   The Cafe, Rosemant, N.J.
1990   Logan Inn, New Hope, Pa.
1992   DeLann Gallery, Plainsboro, N.J.
1993   Watchung Arts Center, Watchung, N.J.
1993   Bergdorf Realtors, Summit, N.J.
1993   Chatham Library, Chatham, N.J.
1994   American Cyanamid, Princeton, N.J.

E D U C A T I O N

1972   B.A., Rutgers, The State University, Newark, N.J.
1975   Art Student's League, New York City, N.Y.
1980   M.A., Montclair State College, Montclair, N.J.

General Information

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SITO Artchive

Maria T. Niforatos has 9 works total in the Artchive. They are organized into tag categories you see listed below. Some works appear in multiple categories.

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