Thomas Frontini

Thomas Frontini

Born: 1967, Kingston, Ontario

Biography and Information

Biography

Thomas Frontini (b. 1967) combines surrealist techniques of painting detailed foreground images with atmospheric backgrounds. The dreamlike imagery balances contemporary objects with historical scenes. His paintings explore magic in the mundane and draw from the transformative power of the subconscious.

Frontini’s palette and technique are directly influenced by his Italian heritage and Italian art history yet he creates a dialogue between the present and the future. His reference material is sourced from current topical issues that humans face, using metaphors to portray an intangible potential of the future. Immense landscapes stretch out around intricately painted flora and fauna. Thickly painted cliff faces and clouds are dotted with tiny details of futuristic habitats. Expressive abstract orbs are enwrapped in a volume of light and distance. In a carefully measured vagueness, Frontini’s paintings address not only the seen world, but a world of puzzling fantasies.

Frontini’s education began in art restoration and conservation in Florence Italy. He received a BFA at the Cleveland Institute of Art and a MFA from Ohio State University, Columbus. He has exhibited throughout Canada, the United States, and Hong Kong and is a part of various collections both private and public including the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Seoul and the Cleveland Clinic. Born and raised in Canada, Frontini currently lives and works in Cleveland, OH.

Education
1992
MFA, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH

1990
BFA, Cleveland Institute of Art, Cleveland, OK

1989
The Institute for Art and Restoration, Florence, Italy

Exhibitions
2019
Gama Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey 

2016
Richard Levy Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
Fischer Galleries, Jackson, MS

2015
Jack Meier Gallery, Houston, TX
The William & Joseph Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

2014
Gama Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey 
William Busta Gallery, Cleveland, OH (painting)
The Gallery 4, Pittsburgh, PA
1305 Gallery, Cincinnati, OH
William Busta Gallery, Cleveland, OH (sculpture)
International Izmir Festival, Izmir, Turkey 
Macao Arts Festival, Macao, China

2013
William Busta Gallery, Cleveland, OH
LAUNCH LA Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Gama Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey

2012
William Busta Gallery, Cleveland, OH

2007 
Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong

2006
Lawrence Asher Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

2005
Convivium33 Gallery, Cleveland, OH

2004
Heights Arts, Cleveland, OH

1995
Space 700, New York, NY

Group Exhibitions
2019
to the moon and back, Richard Levy Gallery, Albuquerque, NM
Confluence, GX Gallery, London

2018
CAN Triennial, Cleveland, OH
GX Gallery, London
The Annual Midyear Juried Show, The Butler Institute of American Art, Youngstown, OH
Launch LA, Los Angeles, LA
Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong
The Gallery 4, Pittsburgh, PA

2017
The Annual Midyear Juried Show, The Butler Institute of American Art – Youngstown, OH
Birds of America – Explorations of Audubon, 101/Exhibit, Los Angeles, CA

2015
Chalk Farm Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
The William & Joseph Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

2014
Chalk Farm Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
The William & Joseph Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
World Wide Art LA, Los Angeles, CA

2013
Jeffrey Leder Gallery, New York, NY
Earthward, Skylight Gallery, New York, NY
Open Show, Gallery 825, Los Angeles, CA
La Grange National, La Grange, GA
Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong
Marji Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

2012
The Quantum Effect, The Active Space, Brooklyn, NY
William Busta Gallery, Cleveland, OH
The Corner Gallery, New York, NY
La Grange Art Museum, La Grange, GA
Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong
Cross Gate Gallery, Lexington, KY

2011
Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong
Cross Gate Gallery, Lexington, KY

2010
MOCA, Cleveland, OH
Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong
Cross Gate Gallery, Lexington, KY
Wall Gallery, Cleveland, OH

2008
Tatar Gallery, Toronto, Canada
Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong 
The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH

2007
Spaces Gallery, Cleveland, OH
Side by Side, MOCA, Cleveland, OH
Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong 
Lawrence Asher Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Ballard Fetherston Gallery, Seattle, WA

2006
Lawrence Asher Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Convivium 33 Gallery, Cleveland, OH
Ballard Fetherston Gallery, Seattle, WA

2005
8-Hour Drawings, Bowman Penelec Art Galleries, Allegheny College, Allegheny, PA
NEO + One, Murray Hill Galleries, Cleveland, OH
Man and Beast, Emily Davis Gallery, University of Akron, Akron, OH
Lawrence Asher Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Palm Beach Community College, Lake Worth, FL
ALL Gallery, New Haven, CT
Convivium 33 Gallery- Cleveland, OH
Heights Arts, Cleveland Heights, OH

2004
Elevation Art Gallery, Cleveland, OH
Pareidolia, Orange County Center for Contemporary Art, Santa Ana, CA
The Cleveland Foundation Art Gallery, Cleveland, OH
In America Now, Don O’Melveny Gallery, West Hollywood, CA
Modern Visionaries: Mind, Spirit, and the Imagination, Caladan Gallery, Beverly, MA
It’s a Wonderful Life: Psychodrama in Contemporary Painting, SPACES Gallery, Cleveland, OH

2000
James Graham & Sons Gallery, New York, NY

1999
James Graham & Sons Gallery, New York, NY

1998
James Graham & Sons Gallery, New York, NY

1995
Space 700, New York, NY

Collections
Agnes Gund, New York, NY
Cleveland Clinic Main Campus, OH
National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul

Awards
2005 
Finalist, Pelham Art Center Alexander Rutsch Award and Exhibition for Painting

2004
Top Award: In America Now, group exhibition, Don O’Melveny Gallery, West Hollywood, CA

1992 
Sara Jane Pyne Materials Grant, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
Harold and Bernice Louis Scholarship, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH

1991
Jurors Award, Chattahoochee Valley Arts Museum 
Honorable Mention in Painting, Bridgeport Area Arts Council

1990
Award of Excellence, Ohio Watercolor Society
Special Mention in Painting, Cleveland Museum of Art
Handmade Book Competition, Jessica R. Gund Memorial Library 

Press
2016 
Wes Pulkka, Dreamy Visions, The Albuquerque Journal, August 21

2014 
Karen S. Chambers, Two Different Views of Nature for Solway Gallery, Cincinnati.com, Feb 16
Bursa Sonmezisik, Paradise of the Future, Haber Toplam, February 8

2013
Jen Hitchings, The Quantum Effect at The Active Space Brings a Touch of Mystery, Bushwick Daily, January 14
Megan Koester, William Wray and Thomas Frontini at LAUNCH Gallery, Fabrik, March Dominick Lombardi, Earthward Bound, Huffington Post, November 11

2012 
Joseph Clark, Beasts of Burden : Welcome to Thomas Frontini’s zoo, Cleveland Scene Magazine, December 19

2006 
Dennis Knowles, Interview, The Sound of Applause Arts Show PBS WVIZ TV, January 26
Jesse Tinsley, Art Lover Transforms Old Church into Gallery, Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 22
Elenore Welles, Review: Thomas Frontini at Lawrence Asher Gallery, ArtScene Vol. 25 No. 7, March

2005 
Dan Tranberg, Water, Water Everywhere, Plain Dealer, January 14
Judy Birke, Closer Inspection, New Haven Register, March 12
Peter Frank, Calendar Picks of the Week, LA Weekly, March 15 
Rick Vocicka, Inner Animal, The Bushtelite, March 22
Akron University Press, May 7 
Review: Man + Beast, Northern Ohio Live, May 8
Amy Bracken Sparks, The Crying Game, Angle: a journal of arts+ culture, October
Lyz Bly, Ironically Iconic, Cleveland FreeTimes, Dec 16
Zachary Lewis, Capsule reviews of current area art exhibitions, Cleveland Scene Magazine, Dec 21
Two Page Spread, Direct Art Magazine Volume 11, Spring/Summer

2004 
Review : A Wonderful Show about Alienation at Spaces Gallery, The Plain Dealer, March
Michael Gallucci, When Dreams Die: A new exhibit laughs at everyday hopelessness, Cleveland Scene Magazine, March 25
Lyz Bly, Perchance to Dream: The art of dark imaginings at Spaces, Cleveland Free Times, March 31
Review: It’s a Wonderful Life, Psychodrama in Contemporary Painting, Angle Magazine, April 18
Amy Bracken Sparks, Works of beauty and great skill illuminate universal questions, The Plain Dealer, June 18
Joe Jancsurak, Art for art’s sake: alternative art and unusual themed exhibits contribute to success of 25-year-old, artist-run gallery, Art Business News, July 1
Amy Bracken Sparks, Second Annual Literary Issue, Featured Artist, Angle: A Journal of Arts + Culture Vo.2 No.15, Jul/Aug
Daniella Walsh, Grand Illusion: The show Pareidolia, featuring artworks composed of everyday objects, is humorous and profound, Orange County Register, September 15

Press Release
2019 to the moon and back at Richard Levy Gallery
2016 Modern Ruin at Richard Levy Gallery