Nicholas Joseph Angelo (1921-2004)
Born in New Jersey in 1921 as Nicholas Angelo, he later changed his name to the original family name "de Angelis". He served in Europe, Africa and Italy in the U.S. Army, where he was wounded and awarded the Purple Heart. After a long career as an illustrator for various top agencies in New York, de Angelis, in the 1960’s, dedicated his life solely to his passion for painting and sculpting, which consumed him to the very end of his life. He was a life member of the Art Students League of New York and a life member of the American Watercolor Society, where he was appointed Vice President, Jury member of A.W.S. for group shows and traveling exhibitions to National Museums.
In his early career, de Angelis painted watercolors of street life and café scenes, paintings of Paris and the Seine and of New York coffee houses. De Angelis’ work evolved significantly during the more than eighty years he created art, morphing from realistic to the highly abstract. He worked in whatever media was close at hand in his 57th St apartment, where he could walk to the Art Students League. His color choices ranged from delicate pastels to bright and clashing primary colors to somber blacks and grays. His portraiture was striking and his self portraits depict much of the pain he experienced in his own life, particularly during his military service.
De Angelis had an infallible instinct for form, space and line. His ability to envision the future and incorporate found objects was uncanny. His avant-garde images were conceived years before the high tech mania, robots and computer gaming. Pieces of pipe and metal he found on his long midnight walks inspired him to create works combining man and machine. His most powerful works were done in the later years, dynamic paintings and sculptures of men and menacing robotic animals. His canvases and three dimensional works express both the dark and bright sides of his visions, creating a sense of an urgent and constantly changing universe.
He illustrated The Vision of Francois the Fox by Julia Cunningham, and produced eight color paintings for the book Power Sits at Another Table by Earl Shorris.
New York City Center, invitational and jury shows in New York City.
Peter Dietch, invitational drawing show New York City
Guild Hall, invitational exhibition, East Hampton, NY
F.A.R. Gallery, New York City
Frank Eagan, invitational exhibition, New York City
Martha Jackson, group invitational exhibition, New York City
National Arts Club, invitational exhibition, New York City
Salmagundi, invitational exhibition, New York City
Allan Stone Gallery, New York City, 1994 Group show that included Arshile Gorky, Willem de Kooning and Franz Kline
Gallery 10, solo and group shows, New Hope, Pennsylvania
Arthur Breslauer, Munich, Germany
Slide Exhibitions in the Soviet Union Invitational, directed by William Smith
His work is represented in may private collections and after Nick’s death in 2004, his wife, Josiane de Angelis, was left with a large body of work.
Information provided by Edie Miller Angelo, adapted from nickdeangelis.com