Michelle Gagliano was born in Jamestown, New York, and currently resides in central Virginia. She has created a considerable body of work with projects including artist residencies, solo exhibitions, group shows, museum exhibitions, and private installations, including collaborative exhibitions with musicians, poets and authors. Gagliano is the recipient of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Fellowship award. Her work is held in numerous private and corporate collections nationally as well as internationally in both Europe and Asia. Gagliano’s art is a continuous engagement with experimentation of materials within the studio. Imaginary “natural” forms and textural patinas are melded in an exploration of surface alchemy, presenting the viewer with a breathtaking panorama that evokes universal themes and emotions.

For years I have been investigating the notion of light versus dark. I get excited when darkness and light merge together to have a conversation. Their contrast is a basic reflection of navigation in life-the learning to integrate and make different viewpoints, backgrounds, and beliefs harmonious, merging them into a platform that creates a spirited dialogue that is exciting, musically balanced, and visually interesting. The imprint of the landscape has been a constant for me. Whatever subject I am researching in the studio, I always circle back to the investigation of the landscape. I am inspired by enfolding literature and science into the dialogue with the artwork. From ancient words that describe the landscape to science that sheds light on the unseen emotions of the forest. It is my place of refuge. I follow the light, mood, and colorations of the seasons, responding to all weather conditions and how they affect the colors of the surrounding skies and landscape. Like a sundial, I follow the light through the day, tracking it as it bounces and reacts to whatever is in its path. The lights’ movement is an amazing dance. A dialogue forms as the light fractures itself onto the landscape. My current body of work takes this conversation into account and further reduces and deconstructs the landscape, reflecting and refracting the prism of light and soul in a contemporary concept. The cinematic “golden hour” creates an illumination that reconstructs the landscape into a Dantesque study of “Paradisio.”


2017 – VMFA Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Visual Arts Fellowship

2014 – Virginia Center for Creative Arts, Artists Residency Fellow

2007The Painted Violin. Original Musical Composition inspired by

the "Painted Violin" artwork by Michelle Gagliano. Composition performed by

the Santa Fe Symphony Orchestra, Santa Fe, NM


Laura Rathe Fine Art- Houston and Dallas, TX

Angela King Gallery- New Orleans, LA

Elisa Contemporary Art- New York, NY

Chroma Contemporary Art- Charlottesville, VA

Les Yeux de Monde- Charlottesville, VA

Second Street Gallery- Charlottesville, VA

Galleria Grefti- Umbertide, Italy