Featured Artist Michael Costello

Brutally direct, yet sumptuous in texture and form, the oil portraits of artist Michael Costello speak of our humanness. Visit his website to see more of his paintings.

 

“Seated Nude with Blue” Oil on Canvas, 24” x 20” by artist Michael Costello. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Seated Nude with Blue” Oil on Canvas, 24” x 20”

 

I am a mid-career figurative painter. My work is based on the anxiety of humankind in the 21st century. I paint beautifully things you may not wish to look at.

 

“Michaeline Fall Curtis” Oil on Canvas, 30” x 30” by artist Michael Costello. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Michaeline Fall Curtis” Oil on Canvas, 30” x 30”

 

I choose my models for their ability to inspire empathy for our universal humanness.

 

“Painting Becca” Oil on Canvas, 30” x 30” by artist Michael Costello. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Painting Becca” Oil on Canvas, 30” x 30”

 

For over thirty years I have worked with models to comment on our cultural heritage, both philosophical and theological—to acquaint all that is good with beauty.

 

“Man with Hammer Toe” Oil on Canvas, 24” x 24” by artist Michael Costello. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Man with Hammer Toe” Oil on Canvas, 24” x 24”

 

We focus on making clear definitions of what is ugly and what is beautiful—this often shuns both sides to the extreme, turning the beautiful ugly and making ugly beautiful.

 

“Lisa” Oil on Canvas, 24” x 18”by artist Michael Costello. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Lisa” Oil on Canvas, 24” x 18”

 

My work with the model as muse gives us a window to the individual soul. I intend to inspire the viewer to observe the subject with a level of pathos; to confront the truth within themselves as to what they believe to be beautiful.

 

“Julian” Oil on Canvas, 30” x 40”by artist Michael Costello. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Julian” Oil on Canvas, 30” x 40”

 

Much of my inspiration is birthed in writing—in particular, Umberto Eco’s essays “The History of Beauty” and “On Ugliness.”

 

“Self Portrait as Pagliacci” Oil on Canvas, 20” x 20” by artist Michael Costello. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Self Portrait as Pagliacci” Oil on Canvas, 20” x 20”

 

I often reference myself and other models as classic figures of tragic comedy, such as Gilles or Pagliacci. These beings become allegories for the “lone poet” that lives in all of us. I use composition to create a familiarity that makes the persona of the model more approachable while recreating them in a 21st century language.

 

“Self Portrait based on Rembrandt” Oil on Canvas, 22” x 28” by artist Michael Costello. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Self Portrait based on Rembrandt” Oil on Canvas, 22” x 28”

 

I have found myself examining my visage as I enter my senior years. These days my relationship with the tactile qualities of surface has taken precedence over image.

 

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YES PLEASE!

Comments

  1. Pepper Hume says:

    Indeed, hard to take at first, but I went thru the images given a second time. They will stay with me for a long while! I, too see beauty in so many people I encounter every day and ugliness in what is supposed to be high style. Thanks for your courage to paint these models so strongly.

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