JOEL D’ORAZIO

ARTIST STATEMENT

After practicing architecture for more than 25 years I have turned to a new medium.  I now create art with paint on panels, mixed medium works & sculpture using found and donated objects and digital art. The images are uncommon, yet suggest the familiar forms of nature. Although the paintings are varied in color and composition, each image is part of a logical yet highly intuitive progression of work.

Each work begins as an adventure and its identity becomes as valid and important as the next,  with the medium playing a most important role in the discovery of solutions.  Originating in the subliminal, each work is a fresh encounter with the lush, unpredictable medium.  The alchemy of powdered metal

My artistic vocabulary is devoid of obvious symbols and messages, I do not intend to tell a story or render a recognizable form. For me, the process of creating is a meditative exercise. Though the images are generated spontaneously, recurring themes of movement and form can be found. The paintings relate only to each other, each providing clues to interpret the next.  This is their power.  In contrast,  my three dimensional works will at times possess a sense of content or a relationship  to historical themes, though only in an abstract sense.

I work under various, self-imposed constraints, sometimes I limit my palette to black and white or to metallic pigments. This economy of means is not simply the principle of 'less is more’, I relish restrictions as a challenge to more fully explore each image, to search for the maximum effect.

As I paint, I am preoccupied with the fluidity of the paint and the resulting density, and also the spatial concerns that are important in the creation of an illusion. I work with the reflective quality of the medium, creating many transparent layers which suggest great depths of space. I fashion complex layering of many small areas of color in order to dissolve any central focus or subject matter.


 

EXHIBITIONS

2011
BLACKROCK CENTER for the ARTS,  GERMANTOWN, MD,  3 PERSON EXHIBITION,
JUNE 2011?  Showing Chair Sculptures.

ARTS IN EMBASSY PROGRAM, Group Exhibition in US Ambassador's home, Copenhagen, Denmark


2010

AREA 405, Baltimore, MD,  group Exhibition,  '41 Miles North', with Washington Sculptors
Group, October 7 to November 5.

CCBC ART GALLERY, Community College of Baltimore County, Group Exhibition, 'Kaleidoscope', curated by Marcia Bass,  October 12 to November 19.

HISTORICAL SOCIETY of WASHINGTON, Washington, DC,  WSG Group Exhibition curated by Jayme McLellen,  'Porous Borders',  September 10 to December 6.

INDUSTRY GALLERY, Washington, DC, Group Exhibition with Campana Bros., Mark Newson, Nacho Carbonell, Peter Traag....., 'Getting to Now – Pathways to 21st Century Design', July 10 to August 21.

McLEAN PROJECT for the ARTS, McLean, VA,  Group Exhibition, 'Fantastic Journeys',
curated by Beatrice Gralton, June 17 to July 31.

GRACE - Greater Reston Arts Center, Reston, VA,  Group Exhibition, IPAR & WSG  'gaps'
Curated by  Vesela Sretenovic, June 25 to August 14

THE RATNER MUSEUM,  Bethesda, MD,  GROUP EXHIBITION,  April 1 to April 27

2009
WASHINGTON SQUARE - Washington Sculptors Group,  Washington, DC,
Group Exhibition, 'Sculpture NOW 2009', Curated by Victoria Reis, February 2 to May 1
FIRST PRIZE:  Tom Rooney Award for Excellance 2009  JOEL D'ORAZIO
                     for the 'Herman Miller Dread Chair'.

WORKHOUSE ART CENTER - Washington Sculptors Group, Lorton, VA,  Group Exhibition, 'REFORM', May 13 to June 27

GLEN ECHO SPANISH BALLROOM, Glen Echo, MD, Group exhibition, 'Labor day Art Show',
September 5 to Sept. 7.

ART MUSEUM OF THE AMERICAS - OAS, Washington, DC,  Group Exhibition - Washington Sculptors Group, 'Bilateral Engagement' Curated by Laura Roulet ,  October 15 to January 15, 2010

2008
WASHINGTON SQUARE - Washington Sculptors Group,  Washington, DC,
Group Exhibition, 'Sculpture NOW 2008' Curated by David Furchgott,  February 4 to May 2

CORCORAN GALLERY OF ART, Washington, DC,  'Art Anonymous' auction,  May 10

 

2007
PHOTOSANDART.COM, DESIGN CONCEPTS UNLIMITED, 'Abstracts 2007',
'BEST OF SHOW', Joel D'Orazio,  Jan. 1 to Dec. 31

WASHINGTON SQUARE - WASHINGTON SCULPTORS GROUP, Washington, DC,
Group Exhibition,  'Sculpture NOW 2007' Curated by Ramon Osuna,  February 3 to May 5

WWP GALLERY,  WASHINGTON, DC,  9x10 WPA/C Group Exhibition,  March 5 to April 10.

McLEAN PROJECT for the ARTS.  McLean, VA,  'Strictly Painting - Colorfield Re-visited' curated by Kristen Hileman , Group Exhibition,  June 21 to July 28

2004

HEERY INTERNATIONAL ARCHITECTS, Washington, DC, One Person Exhibition thru 2005

MULEH, Washington, DC, One person exhibition, Jan. to June

PASS GALLERY, Washington, DC, group  exhibition,  Nov. 20 to Dec.14

MONTGOMERY COUNTY ARTS & HUMANITIES COUNCIL, Group Exhibition,  September and October

ART-O-MATIC,  Washington, DC, Group Show,  Nov. 12 to Dec.5

2003
ARTS IN EMBASSY PROGRAM, Group Exhibition, Nicosia, Cyprus Mid 2003 to 2005

AMBIENTE,  Washington, DC, Group Exhibition

MULEH, Washington, DC, One Person Exhibition, August to Jan. 29, 2004

A RITZ CARLTON, Washington, DC, Group exhibition, Sept. to June 2004

2002
HEERY INTERNATIONAL ARCHITECTS, Washington, DC, One Person Exhibition, Ongoing

2001
SAVE THE BAY EXHIBITION, Art Auction, Washington, DC, UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND UNIVERSITY COLLEGE ART PROGRAM GALLERY, 'From Maryland to Bucharest and Back', Adelphi, MD,  July 5 to Sept. 28

2000
THE HOWARD COUNTY CENTER FOR THE ARTS, ELLICOT CITY, MD., GROUP SHOW,  '2000 Views', 14 January to 25 February

DUNCAN & MILLER GALLERY,  Washington, DC, GROUP SHOW,  'Space/Place', 1 April to 29 April.

JOHN JAY COLLEGE OF CRIMINAL JUSTICE, NYC, GROUP SHOW,  'Art From Detritus', April 2000

THE RALLS COLLECTION,  Wa GROUP SHOW, July to 27 October,

WATERGATE GALLERY,   Washington, DC, ONE MAN SHOW, Attractions 2000,   27 Oct. to 1 Dec.

1998
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND, Washington, DC, Sculpture

 

Exhibit, April 19 to May 3

ARTISTS MUSEUM,  Washington, DC, GROUP SHOW, 'Critical Discoveries', An exhibition of emerging art curated by Ken Oda,14 July to 15 August

AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF ARCHITECTS  Washington, DC ONE MAN SHOW, Archives and Library, 'Quattro',  September & October

1997
AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF ARCHITECTS,  Washington, DC. ONE MAN SHOW, in Archives and Library, 'Ulterior Objects',  2 May to 30 June.

AMERICAN CENTER FOR PHYSICS,  College Park, MD., GROUP SHOW curated by Sarah Tanguy, September 22 to March 22 1998
 
1996         
BUTLER INSTITUTE OF AMERICAN ART,  Youngstown, Ohio, TWO PERSON SHOW, JOEL & JON D'ORAZIO, 'AbstractVisions' & 'Mirror paintings', 11 Feb. to  31 March

INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND,  Washington, DC, DOUBLE SOLO SHOW, with Richard Dana,  4 June to 19 July

AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF ARCHITECTS,  Washington, DC, ONE MAN SHOW,  in Archives & Library, 'Paint & Structure', September & October.

1995
ARLINGTON ART CENTER,  Arlington, Va., Annual Juried Exhibition,  Juror: David Ross, Director of the  Whitney Museum of Art, NYC,  Jan. 1995 to 7 March 1995

AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF ARCHITECTS, Washington, DC, ONE MAN SHOW in Archives & Library, 'Abstract Visions', Aug. thru Oct. 1995

SALVE REGINA GALLERY,  Catholic University Art Dept., 'New Works on Old Objects' Washington, DC, ONE MAN SHOW  October 1995

ROCKVILLE ARTS PLACE, Rockville, Md., ONE MAN SHOW, 'Mixed Means of Expression',  30 Nov. 1995 to 5 Jan.1996

GALLERY OKUDA INTERNATIONAL, Washington, DC, GROUP SHOW,  'Higher Ground' curated by Mary Ann Reilly, Uplifting works by eight artists, December 1995 thru January 1996

1994
ARNOLD and PORTER,   Washington, DC, ONE MAN SHOW, Jan. 1994.

METROPOL GALLERY,  Baltimore, Md., GROUP SHOW, Jan.-March 1994

FOUNDRY GALLERY,   Washington, DC, JURIED GROUP SHOW, Dec. 1994

CLARK & CO. (M.O.C.A.) GALLERY,  Washington, DC, GROUP SHOW,  'Most Promising New Talent Art Newsletter subscribers,  Oct. 1994

1993          
MARY ANNE REILLY GALLERY,  Washington, DC, ONE MAN SHOW,  Jan. 1993.

HABITAT, Washington, DC, GROUP SHOW, DEC.1992- FEB. 1993

FOUNDRY GALLERY,  Washington, DC, GROUP SHOW,  Dec. 1992, juried by Samuel Hoi, Dean of the Corcoran School of Art.

PALMER'S GALLERY  500,  Hot Springs  National park, Ark,  1993-1997.

THE COLLECTOR ART GALLERY,  Washington, DC, GROUP SHOW, July 1993

1992          
HENRI GALLERY, Washington, DC, GROUP EXHIBIT, June 1992

HABITAT,  Washington, DC, ONE MAN SHOW, Paintings & Furniture,  July 1992thru  October.

SANSARGALLERY,  WashingtonDC, GROUP SHOW, Furniture Exhibit, 1992


SELECT COLLECTIONS
STEPHANIE & DANIEL RIGAUX, Rockville, Md.   
JOHN WENDT, Rockport, MA
E.J. SHIN, Bethesda,  Md
JOHN & DIANA MORAN, Scottsdale,Az.  
NINA SHAPIRO, Washington, DC    
JAN MENNELL, Skillman, NJ
BEVERLY AHLIN, Maitland,Fl.
MARY ANNE REILLY, Bethesda, Md.    
JOEL TOWNSEND, Washington, DC
JAMES MEYER, Bethesda, Md.
MERCEDES RIVERA de GOETZ, Washington, DC
J.W. MAHONEY, Arlington,
TIDA CHAMBERS, Dallas, Texas
NESTOR & MINDY KASSARABA, Washington, DC
SUSAN ENGLE, Gaithersburg, MD
JAMES F. DICKE II, New Bremen, Ohio
DR. TIM ELDER, Arlington, VA
MARC ROTHSCHILD, Washington, DC   
JEREMY LIEW & RANEE LAN, San Francisco, CA   
ERIC BURNS, Washington, DC

CORPORATE
THE AMERICAN EMBASSY IN BARBADOS 
GREENSPUN,SHAPIRO, DAVIS & LEARY,  Fairfax, VA
NICHOLSON PRECISION INSTRUMENTS INC., Germantown, MD
GILMOUR ACADEMY, Gates Mills ,Ohio
MEE DERBY & CO., Washington,DC   
KOAN INC., Silver Spring, MD  
HERMAN MILLER INC   
INNERVISIONS, INC., Herndon, VA
PREMIUM HOME FINANCING, Dallas,Texas  
WATERGATE GALLERY, Washington,DC
MILLER & VAN EATON, Washington, DC    
RELMAN & ASSOCIATES, Washington, DC   
Sterne Keesler Goldstein Fox Attorneys    Washington, DC

CLEARCUT  TREASURE BOX
SAM GILLIAM, Washington, DC    Two
SHEILAH KAST, College Park, Md.
RAY OTTENBERG, Washington, DC     Two
DAN RATHER, New York, New York

LETTERS OF REFERENCE

SAM GILLIAM artist:

"It has been interesting for me to see Joel D'Orazio work his way into painting from architecture.  He is working the magic of color into glass.  His real success is just a matter of time - Joel is on the right track  The dynamism of his architecture makes sense in the glass behind his paintings.  Joel has a twin brother who lives in New York, an artist, who is his alter ego.  His progress now depends on intensity and concentration....I think this city will be richly rewarded by encouraging such fine talent."

J.W. MAHONEY, Artist & art writer:

"I am writing to you in support of Joel D'Orazio's application for a D.C. Commission Grant.  One of the most demanding issues for artists emerging into maturity after the 1980's has been the development of a necessarily individualized set of aesthetic values in the face of a nearly unlimited range of aesthetic possibilities open to artists now.  Joel D'Orazio's deeply original approach to the processes, strategies, and potentials for meaning in abstract painting continues to provide new discoveries and fresh experiences for his viewers, and the quality of his work is fully deserving of your funding.  As Washington's Corresponding Editor for Art in America, and a Contributing Editor for The New Art Examiner, I have seen a great deal of Washington art in the last 15 years, and I would place Joel D'Orazio's work among the most innovative that I have known here."
 
DR. LOUIS A. ZONA, Director of the Butler Institute of American Art:

"I have know Joel for nearly 15 years and have followed his career with great interest and enthusiasm.  Joel in my professional judgment is an artist of extraordinary ability who is destined to make a significant contribution to our visual arts heritage.  In 1996, The Butler Institute of American Art organized a show of Joel's recent work which I felt presented an artist whose creative energies seem to know no bounds.  The exhibition was an enormous success receiving numerous positive reviews from the art critics in Northeastern Ohio and Western Pennsylvania.  I believe that the appeal of D'Orazio's work is based upon his wonderful technical facility which coupled with outstanding concepts makes for an art that extends the rich traditions of America's 20th century abstraction.  He is a serious and dedicated artist who continually pushes the boundaries which have defined Post War non-objective painting In short, I simply could not recommend an artist more enthusiastically.  Joel D'Orazio would utilize the support of your foundation to its greatest advantage and would ultimately, I believe, push forward with work that is both energetic and capable of helping to move American art to its next level."

ANDREA POLLAN, curator:

"I have followed the work of Joel D'Orazio for four years.  During this period, I have observed his experimentation with an astonishing array of media.  In his paintings, wall assemblages and sculpture, Joel takes risks with new materials and structures.  His background as an acclaimed architect nourishes many of his compositional ideas.  The paintings reveal his ability to allow chance and process to play a major role in the development of an abstract pictorial idea.  Some are vibrant and jazzy while others are ethereal and subtle.  Occasional obsessiveness yields quirky works that are covered with unusual materials such as metal shavings; He transforms this humble material into a poetic skin that covers the surface of a painting, concealing and revealing what is underneath.  These more eccentric two-dimensional works bridge the paintings and assemblages.

The sculptures display his fascination with urban structures.  The tabletop 'citiscapes' show multiple approaches to scale, relationships and metaphor.  These sculptural tableaux are filled with amusing, mutant or lyrical narratives.  Another interesting area of Joel's sculptural pursuit is spheres of varying size that he fabricates by combining everyday materials.  These spheres look like retro satellites full of menacing wit.  Joel is serious
in his artistic pursuits.  He recently had another successful exhibition at the American Institute of Architects.  A D.C. Commission individual Fellowship would allow him to continue his promising career as a fine artist.  I recommend him strongly for this grant."