|This biography from the Archives of AskART:|
|The following is from Barbara M. Rockefeller, formerly Registrar of the Cape Museum of Fine Arts, Dennis, MA. She is currently on the Executive Committee and Trustee of the Museum.|
I knew Robert Maione very well. I was in his class at the Arts Students League when he was studying with Frank Vincent DuMond in 1950. He had been with DuMond for about a year and was at the time 16 or 17 years of age. He studied the year after DuMond's death (1951) with Frank Mason at the League. In the following summer he studied with Arthur Maynard, who was also a former student of DuMond's.
I worked with Bob the previous summer, 1950, in Pownal, Vermont where DuMond took his League class to study landscape. Bob was New York City born and had never seen a mountain or a green landscape before. He was rather overwhelmed by it all, but after the summer he spent with Maynard he was out painting his
I lost track of him for a few years after that due to my marriage and subsequent children. But sometime around 1959 I went to visit Frank Mason, who had a studio
on the corner of Mulberry and Broome Streets in NYC. He said that Bob was
renting a loft close by. We went to see him. He was living in desperate straits in a non-heated, no facilities loft. He had paintings piled high, but had no outlet for them because at the time all the New York galleries were only featuring abstract art.
I took a lot of Bob's work back with me to New Jersey where I knew I could sell it. A number of his other friends also took work. We persuaded him to go live and paint in Pownal, Vermont and that we would send him money from the sale of his work. He was in Pownal from 1959 to at least 1962.
After he had painted there for a couple of years and had a couple of successful shows he, and two of his friend, Helen Swords and Hunt Barkley, both painters, decided to do a poor-man's grand tour of Europe. They left on a tramp steamer for Morocco where they painted for a short period of time and then went on to Spain and Greece ( which Bob didn't seem to care for very much, according to his letters.) He left Greece fairly quickly and went on to Italy.
Bob was half French, and half Italian. He spoke Italian of sorts because he had a great love of Opera, having gone almost every night when living in NYC, and learned Italian from the librettos.
Once in Italy he had found his home. He settled in Rome for a while where he painted and studied the masterpieces in the museums.
In December of 1971 I received a letter from him saying that he had "purchased two old peasant houses and about 12 acres of land (with olive trees and a vineyard in a beautiful part of Umbria, just south of Perugia." The village was Agello and he named the house Le Bandite. He turned one of the houses into a studio and retrofitted the other into a beautiful home. In July of 1972 I visited him for two
weeks at Le Bandite. It was a wonderful visit and I too learned to love Italy as he did.
The last letter I can find from him was dated June 1975. He had rented the big house and was living in his studio. Although he had had four shows in ten months finances were weighing him down. His partner had died and left him with a large mortgage to pay. Sometime in the late 70's he returned to New York. He had sold Le Bandite and had taken up residence in the studio he had previously had in the city.
He taught at the Art Students League for a number of years after that and took students on painting trips to some of the more exotic countries around the world. He also purchased an old abandoned church in Vermont which he used as a studio until his death.
Unfortunately he died at the height of his career, somewhere around the 4th of November 1987. I don't have the exact day of the month. I received a letter dated the 4th from a friend saying Bob had passed.
I will now list other information I have about his various shows.
Sagittarius Gallery, NYC -May 7-24 1958
Review - Artnews - may 1958
Southern Vermont Art Center, Vermont - July 14 - 23, 1959
Review- Rutland Daily Herald - July 16, 1959
Manchester Journal - July 16, 1959
Berkshire Museum, Vermont - Nov. 1-30 1959
Review-Pittsfield Republican Nov. 29,1959
Bodley Gallery, NYC. Feb. 29-March 12, 1960
Lesley Frost Ballentine Studio, NYC. -March 26 - April 9, 1961
The Wickersham Gallery - April 16 - 28, 1968
Review - Herald Tribune, April 22,1962
Review - Art News May 1962
Aila Agenzia Internationale Letteraria e Artistica - 26 Ottobre 1963
Galleria 88, Rome, Italy - Oct.21 - Nov. 5, 1963
Galleria Selene, Cortina, Italy - dal 18 al 31 luglio 1964
Capricorn Gallery, Bethesda, MD. - Oct.20 - Nov. 12, 1967
Harbor Gallery. Cold Spring Harbor, LI,NY - Nov. 15-Dec.19,1970
Note: He had several shows at this gallery during the time he was in Italy, usually one every two years or so. Bob exhibited also at the National Academy, NYC., The Allied Artists of America, National Arts Club, NYC., Ridgewood Art Institute, NJ, The Lawrence Museum, The Salmagundi Club, NYC., and in galleries in Washington, DC, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Maryland, Leger Galleries, NYC., New Hope, PA, and Hartford, CT.
I do not have dates for many of his later shows.
"This is all the information I have on Robert Maione. He was a remarkable landscape artist and deserves more recognition."
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