The Mountain Democrat

Carlo D'Alessio paintings always draw you in through his perfect perspective to a transcendent world of light and color. His recent painting of EVE is no exception. She is transfixing. EVE is other worldly. EVE is surrealistic. She's more then real, she's hyper-realism.

“EVE is the embodiment of the divine feminine emerging from pristine water. EVE is deep. She is uplifting,” said D'Alessio, an acrylics painter.

A decision to spell EVE in all caps is deliberate by the artist. EVE is reminiscent of the old master paintings. Even the smile on her face conjures up visages of the past. She has a pleasing grin, not broadly smiling.

“I did not want a ‘Playboy' looking Eve in the water. Whether you are religious or not she is the proverbial Eve, the mother of us all,” said D'Alessio. “EVE has taken me over.”

EVE is D'Alessio's most important work in his 30 year career. EVE's position in the painting is looking up toward heaven. Her eyes are looking right into your eyes.

“As the viewer you are gazing downward at her from God's point of view,” said D'Alessio. “There are 11 apples floating on the water, coming around EVE, and she is looking up at you.” Inquiring about the apples D'Alessio said 11 is a prime number and cannot be reduced. He further stated the 11 apples have a symbolic, spiritual meaning. They represent purity, intuition, idealism, inspiration, enthusiasm, vision and inner strength. ”The apples are beautiful. The apples are knowledge,” said D'Alessio.

New Adventure

The painting of EVE is a great departure from D'Alessio's previous works. This is his first portrait. EVE is a queen size portrait 35 inches by 45 inches that was unveiled at Art for the Home Gallery in South Lake Tahoe on Friday, September 1.

A second El Dorado County unveiling is scheduled for Saturday, October 14, 6 pm at Hang It Up Gallery, 4359 Town Center Blvd. in El Dorado Hills. Sam Heaton, D'Alessio's art publisher, said he is working on showings of EVE in San Francisco, Aspen and New York City. “EVE is going to touch a lot of people. This painting is being released as a limited edition canvas giclée,” Heaton continued. “Carlo has designated a percentage of the proceeds from his future art events to benefit autistic children.” “I started the creation of EVE six years ago. I had this thing in my head about honoring women,” said D'Alessio.

Living in Lake Tahoe at the time the artist explained this painting was a natural evolution. He had just finished a few cloud paintings influenced by Lake Tahoe skies and decided that he needed to document the water in the lake.

“I didn't want to do just a landscape with pretty water and rocks. In 2000 I did a photo shoot with a model in the water at Lake Tahoe. She was freezing. We took about 200 photographs. I actually began the painting three years later. I worked on EVE for a year and then didn't touch her for two years,” said D'Alessio.

When asked who the model was for EVE, D'Alessio was coy and would not divulge her identify.

“Over the course of my 30 years as a professional artist I have perfected my understanding of perspective. This allows me to further enhance the illusion in my paintings. I want to draw you in. I want to draw you into that water,” said D'Alessio.

In the painting, EVE is half in the water and half out of the water, EVE is perfect, then she is also distorted. A little bit underneath the water, so what's underneath the surface, is not what's above the surface. The 11 apples on top of the water create refraction. “It is a very complicated painting. Technically EVE is the best painting I have ever done,” D'Alessio claimed.

D'Alessio plans to continue his quest to capture the elements of the material universe and the mystery of life. “There will be an ADAM. He will be fire, earth and rock. ADAM will be a companion to EVE. ADAM will be hot. EVE is cool,” said D'Alessio.

Creating Illusion

D'Alessio paints with a painstaking and distinctive technique that produces a visual effect which has been compared to the work of Maxfield Parrish. By layering acrylic paint with varnish, layer built upon layer, D'Alessio creates an illusory, three-dimensional effect that mimics changes in natural light.

Born in New York in 1954, his artistic journey began at the age of 12 when he was accepted into School of Music and Art in New York City; this is the school after which the book and movie “Fame” were modeled.

From there, he went on to earn a bachelor of science in psychology from Fordham University in 1975; studied at New York's School of Visual Arts in 1976; and attended the world-renowned Art Students' League in 1977.

D'Alessio's professional art career began in Manhattan with a stint as art production manager for Bloomingdales.

After 30 years as a fine artist, D'Alessio's paintings are focal points for executive offices, premier designer homes and fine restaurants from Aspen to Singapore.

Many of D'Alessio's original paintings are large and privately commissioned. An oil baroness from Texas, living in Denver, commissioned a 60 square foot acrylic painting, five panels, around a sweeping staircase. However his original paintings also include works that are personally inspired.