Frank Pierobello

Frank Pierobello about Frank Pierobello

I took an Art Course in High School; I also played the clarinet and the sax in the Band. I had my own dance band; I played at school dances. Once I played at City Hall. My Father [Mike] came from the old country [Italy] for me. Playing at City Hall was like I really made the ‘Big Time’. He made the stands for the Band. He was beaming. In High School the Art Teacher had us write a paper on what we expected out of taking art. Everybody in the class was going to be a famous artist and make all kinds of money. I said I really enjoyed making art and even if I didn’t become a famous artist I knew I would be doing art in some form or another for the rest of my life…..I got an ‘A’ on my paper and I am still doing art at the age of 76 years old. My mother and I live together; she is 98 years old. She does the shopping, cooking and washes the clothes, a little hard of earring, but other than that she is A-OK. I have four (4) children; they are not kids anymore, I think they are catching up to me. I got divorced 45 years ago. I am self taught; I have taken workshops with Charles Movalli, Charles Soveck and courses at Maine School of Art. The most instruction I have had is with Lajos Matolcsy of Paris, Maine. He was a fine artist and was a driving inspiration for me. I think of him all the time. I have painted with professional artist Chip Chadbourn, John Swan, and many others, I have

learned from all of them, but the BIG THING I noticed was that I have more fun than they do; they have even told me that. I think the reason being is that I don’t depend on my art for a living. I have been a TV man, a real estate broker, and for the last 25 years a bar owner. The bar is a work of art for me; I have done alright financially and I have tried to keep my art separate for me, selfish yes, but it works for me. When I do a commission which once in a while I do I am never satisfied with the work; it’s like I give the brush to the person I am doing the painting for. All I can think of is what they would like a NO for me. So I am really on guard, if it were only blue, can you paint my dog, my horse, my house, children playing. I do paint all those things, but it has to be the right time and my idea. I like to do a painting and have somebody buy the work because they feel what I felt when I painted it, when I sell a painting I don’t paint another one like it, that’s a trap that I think a lot of artists fall into. I can’t blame them, the rents due, food for the table, gas for the car, if I had to do that I know I wouldn’t get any enjoyment out of art. It would be a job. I really paint for myself; I am my worst critic. When somebody asks me what my best painting is, I tell them the one I am working on now. The one thing that stinks in my mind is the first time I stood in front of a blank white canvas, I just stood there, I could not move. The instructor came by and said, “come on Frank, GO”, I couldn’t. I finally made a mark, the instructor came by and I said that’s not right, he replied that’s more than you knew a little while ago. I have been doing that for the last 50 years, learning from my mistakes. I tell my customers that whether they know it or not they are patrons of the arts because every time they buy a beer, I can afford a tube of paint. They all think I am another Winslow Homer. I use them as models, it means a lot to them and me – it’s personal. I feel great and my PLAN IS TO PAINT, PAINT, AND PAINT……….Frank Pierobello, 2010

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