The Martyrdom of St. Sebastian (6/14/1998, ball-point pen on paper, 11 x 8 1/2 in.)
(Click above image and go to "Recent Services" link to view more artwork by Angelo)
Cactus Fruit, Angelo (7/1/1997, ballpoint pen on paper, 8 1/2” X 11”)
Babysitting Crisis, Angelo (10/6/2000, ballpoint pen on paper, - 8 1/2" X 11")
The following is an excerpt from a catalogue essay by Marc Fischer in Angelo: Drawings (exhibition held July 7 - August 19, 2000 at Temporary Services, 202 S. State St./ste. 1124, Chicago, IL 60604
Also view Angelo's investigations into prisoner inventions.
From July 7 - August 19, 2000, Temporary Services presented an exhibition of drawings by Angelo in our space at 202 S. State Street in Chicago. This show included roughly 34 finished drawings, 150 reference illustrations made from encyclopedias, books, and magazines, and over 25 pages of autobiographical writing that Angelo wrote to describe his artistic development.
I try to think of Angelo first as a fellow artist and a friend, but he is also an inmate in the California Prison System. The fact of his incarceration is impossible to forget. It is embedded in the form of his drawings and the meager supplies that he uses to make them. It announces itself in an official ink stamp on every letter and envelope of pictures that he sends. Angelo is 56 years old. He has been in prison for the past ten years. His tentative parole date is 2008.
The explosion of commercial interest in art world-constructed genres like Self-Taught Art, Outsider Art, and Prison Art has thrust many artists into the public eye with little regard for the instability and delicacy of their living situations. In the interest of categorizing and marketing what these people do, their ideas have often been greatly simplified and accorded minimal respect and consideration. In the show and essay I tried to deal with Angelo’s work on it’s own terms, and to respond to the complex issues that it brings to the surface. Far too often, artists are crudely lumped together in the aforementioned categories (as though they are all doing the same thing) to illustrate a broader critical agenda or aesthetic bias, or to assist a base marketing scheme. Too often, galleries, museums, and institutions attempt to promote the “outsider” status of marginalized people, without attempting to fully integrate their work and ideas into the larger creative world in a balanced, respectful, and thoughtful manner.
This show attempted to lay initial groundwork so that one could begin to approach and consider Angelo’s drawings. In the future, we should start to think about how this work can be integrated into the rest of the world of ideas and images, just as Angelo will have to reintegrate himself into society upon his eventual release from prison. The above remarks are from the essay “Angelo” by Marc Fischer. To read the complete version of this essay, and to see more images and writing by Angelo, please visit Temporary Services’ website at: http://www.temporaryservices.org and click on "Recent Services" link.