Thomas Micchelli

Head 6 (from 12 Heads), 2021

microcrystalline wax and ceramic base, 5 x 4.25 x 3.25 inches

Micchelli: Circling Back

The simplest way to put it is that Italian art and culture form the double helix around my life and work. Although both of my parents were born in this country, I grew up in a social fabric that was far more Italian than American, which I didn’t fully appreciate until my first trip to Italy, where I felt immediately at home. My first memorable encounter with art was in the form of a coffee-table book of Michelangelo’s paintings that one of my uncles, an amateur sculptor, showed me one Christmas morning when I was seven or eight. The visceral transcendence of the forms overwhelmed me in a way I couldn’t comprehend, imprinting an indelible sense of wonder.

The compact volumes, structural solidity, and primacy of line that undergird the art of Michelangelo, Masaccio, Pontormo, Caravaggio, de Chirico, Morandi — to pluck a handful of names out of dozens — are the elusive touchstones of my practice. They are not elements exclusive to Italian art, of course, but no matter how widely I cast my net, I always find myself circling back to the Italians and the Italianate when I need to find my bearings.

Two Figures, 2022

microcrystalline wax and ceramic base, 13.25 x 12 x 12 inches

Woman with Raised Arm, 2021

microcrystalline wax and ceramic base, 10.75 x 9.75 x 7 inches

Three Figures, 2021

microcrystalline wax and ceramic base, 11.25 x 18 x 23 inches

Head 12 (from 12 Heads) and Head 10 (from 12 Heads), 2021,

each microcrystalline wax and ceramic base, 5.25 x 4.25 x 4.25 inches

Copy After Masaccio, Florence (from Expulsion from the Garden of Eden in the Cappella Brancacci, Santa Maria del Carmine),  2003, pencil on paper, 10 x 7 inches 

Thomas Micchelli