Graphic Artist - Gallery 118 Owner
Fabiana Novillo Díaz was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Since her childhood, she wanted to be an artist. First, she thought of being an architect. Nevertheless, her father denied it thinking that it was not quite a career for a woman. But her desire for creativity turned to another art field when she decided to study Advertising & Art Direction, Graphic Design, and Photography a few years later.
She grew up in a militarized Buenos Aires, raised by a poet mother and an inventor father with the most fantastic ideas she ever met.
She remembers that time a chaotic and full of fear on the streets. She was in her teen's age. However, she revives the restraint that stimulated her ideas. Moreover, spread her wings.
She flew to Europe then, worked in Spain, and came back to Argentina to start working in many Art Direction areas for multination companies.
Again, the wings led her to fly to make her art creations seen in different cultures, countries, and art fairs worldwide. Finally, she landed in Florida to start running her art gallery, Gallery 118, girded by great international artists.
She is based now in Ocala, Florida, the US. A beautiful country land circled by nature that she calls the most potent "muse" in her tireless creative process.
Oils - Restorator
Benito Cerna León was born in the city of Trujillo, Peru, in 1960. Self-taught painter, he has studied Conservation and Restoration of artworks and murals. He has participated in several restoration projects in temples and historical monuments, as well as in private and state collections both in Latin America and Europe. His art sells globally.
Cerna's prompt aptitude for art was a discovery that paid off from the start. Young Benito started trading his pictorial creations to his classmates for treats or meals that he could not afford. As the years went by, he kept on building his path as an artist. During his teenage years, improvising an art and framing workshop, he began selling in the street paintings of decorative motifs that fascinated the weekend tourists, who predicted a promising future.
Moved by curiosity and the desire to delve into art, he wanted to enter the School of Art of Trujillo but did not obtain permission from his parents given his minority of age. But the artist's drive kept growing, and his talent needed to be channeled towards a better course.
Then, shaken by the damage caused by an earthquake that hit his hometown, and seeing the importance of restoration for the conservation of architectural treasures and art, he joined the Casa de la Cultura, that was, perhaps, the door to the world of art and painting that he had been longing to finally open.
It was not long before his extraordinary ability stood out and was discovered by the renowned Peruvian artist Óscar Allaín Cottera, who encouraged him to devote himself entirely to painting, and under his generous wing, presented him to society as the young emerging artist with a remarkable pictorial gift. Benito Cerna's work, mostly done in oil and ink, covers all techniques, from watercolors to oils, and all styles (modern, figurative, abstract), not limiting himself, in pursuit of the permanent enrichment of his artistic identity.
As well as that of his artist friend, Cerna considers that the role of the critic, the dealer, and the galleries was and is transcendental in the path of his art. "Because, if those people, those characters, as well as those who make this book now, do not exist, the gift of art does not expand or transcend." His art has been and is presented in countless exhibitions and galleries all around the world.
Jewelry Designer - Public art curator
Contractual Cultural Programs Coordinator Raquel Vallejo has a background in arts & cultural affairs, event planning, fundraising, institutional development, and project management.
Vallejo is multicultural and multilingual and has lived and worked in the US, Cuba, Canada, and France. She is currently a consultant for the Cultural Affairs Division of the City of Gainesville’s Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department.
Some of her previous clients include the City of Miami Beach, the City Museum of Washington D.C., and the Miami Center for Architecture & Design.
Throughout her career, Vallejo has worked with renowned artists and musicians worldwide. She is the principal designer of RAVA Designs LLC, a contemporary line, one of a kind studio jewelry marketed privately and to museum stores. Besides, Vallejo is a licensed sommelier, passionate “Cubanista,” global traveler, and epicurean.
The oil landscapes of Iréne Salley capture the earthy, vibrant essence of North Central Florida through the eyes of a French post-impressionist. Her swirling strokes and shimmering colors seem to literally swim over the canvas. In some paintings the local beauty of her Gainesville home is captured in blithe, animated tones.
Each painting explores the boundaries between what is seen and what is imagined to be.
Salley, who was born in Guadeloupe, a small, tropical island in the French West Indies, realized her passion for art when she moved to Paris in 1974. Her ties to France and the post-impressionist movement that began there can be seen in her spontaneous, emotional style.
Salley's subject matter is now influenced by her American experience.
Like the artists who have influenced her, Salley is in love with color and motion. Each painting dances with excitement. Salley is not concerned with capturing the physical details of the image before her. Rather, she is intent on expressing the emotions those images convey. She applies her paint in rhythm to the moods within and around her, painting in giant, surging brush strokes or short, rapid swipes of the painter's knife. She is, in fact, in love with the process of painting almost as much as she is with the subjects and stories of her art.
Acrylic - Multimedia - Installations - Sculptures
Vivian Antonini is a talented and award-winning artist best known for her abstract painting designs. Her work has been described as 2D expressionist paintings with a diversity of materials incorporated into her creations, producing rhythm and dynamism in abstract art.
Her focus is on forms, textures, and colors. She paints with her soul, putting in her works, her mind, spirit, dreams. And even her nightmares. Her projects consist of multiple books or series, with various media grouped around specific themes and meanings. Henri Matisse, Robert Rauschenberg, Willem de Kooning, and Ian Davenport are her influence.
Her goal is to create controversial works of abstract art that will engage the viewer into a discussion, a sense of belonging, and an experience that will spark conversations anywhere. It’s a back-and-forth plays between her and the canvas. Her paintings are open to interpretation by the viewer without a route. Viewers need to find a road and have fun looking at them.
Her creativity has led her to expand her works, designing sculptures and installations of art using diverse materials.
She was born in Venezuela and lived many years in Canada, where she became a Canadian Citizen and since 2006 has called Georgia home.
Acrylic - Oil - Pen - Murals
Sofía Sarmiento is a young and gifted multimedia artist. She (17) was born in Argentina and lives between there and the US.
From the age of two, she began a prolific artistic production that her mother, family, and friends still conserve as valuable contemporary art pieces.
Her trips back and forth to the United States, Europe, and Argentina, stimulated her capacity and curiosity to nurture her artistic ideas.
Raised in a family of creative artists, she is the youngest of three children. Her oldest sister and her hero brother are both artists that she admires.
As a high school student, her participation in art exhibitions is always a celebration and recognition of the teachers and classmates who appreciate her work.
She began her first steps into muralism by the hand of the public art curator, Mrs. Raquel Vallejo.
Raquel trusted Sofía to be a helper to the muralist artist, Mr. Mwanel Pierre-Louis, to paint the town's first mural in Micanopy, Florida. Vallejo also encouraged Sofía to paint her first "solo" mural and second later at her cottages in Micanopy. The third mural in town.
Her techniques combine drawing, painting, oil, pencil, acrylic, textile art & murals. She is also a jewelry model, and together with her mother, they form an artistic team creating multimedia artworks.
Self-taught, Sofía is very determined when it comes to working. She is a top-level art critic, hard worker, gifted and talented artist.
Thank you, Sofi. I am so proud of you.
Fabiana Novillo Diaz
GALLERY 118 DIRECTOR
Graphic art - Multimedia
Provocative. Question maker, author of thoughtful and profound work.
Maria Inés Nouzeilles works in contemporary art, feeding back on her medical experience. It brings elements of medicine and re-signifies them. It generates a series of new bodies, the Cyborgs or Cyborns. It invites us to think.
She was born in La Plata (Argentina 1968), where she studied medicine and took ceramics classes. Then she traveled to specialize as a neurologist in the City of Mar del Plata (a spa city 400 km away), where she entered her first art workshop. After completing her training, she moved to Buenos Aires to continue specializing and began the University of Art, where she did not prosper due to job demands. Then she starts her tour of workshops of local artists of international importance. Initially, she drew. Then, coinciding with her pregnancy with twins, she had an exponential turn in her work. She left the charcoal and filled with color, turning to abstraction.
Years later, she temporarily left medicine to dedicate totally to art. She attended the School of Projects, a school of art clinics led by teachers of artists.
This how the Cyborgs / Cyborns series came about, reading Donna Haraway and delving into contemporary art.
From here, she did not limit herself to a technique but to try to convey an idea. In general, taking inspiration from medicine, which she later returned, and permanent feedback.
Many times she takes elements of medicine and re-signifies them. Thus generates a wheel that gives visibility to thoughts and reflections on vital issues and tries to ask questions.
Currently, she lives in Punta del Este, Uruguay.
Drawings - Paintings - Mixed Media
Vivian Jendzio is a Latino-Austrian German artist who grew up with the richness of both cultural heritages. Born and raised in Chicago, her childhood was filled with relatives, journeys and adventures, along with her parents supplying her with drawing and painting mediums, watercolors, pencils, charcoals, oil paint, papers, sketch books and canvas. She would spread them all out on the floor and paint and draw every night after playing outdoors.
Vivian has degrees in Fine Art from the University of Florida and Northern Illinois University and in Physical Education from the University of Illinois which translates into a kinetic expression in her artwork.
Vivian’s paintings reflect movement, energies, and life forces. To her, painting and drawing are both automatically entwined with each other, intuited through the feeling and sensitivity of the subject matter.
Combining the use of paint and drawing, Jendzio creates vibrant tensions while the underlying images and motion show through. Jendzio’s combination of sheer luminosity and opacity create a vibrant tension, allowing the underlying images in her artwork to take on a life of their own. The subject matter becomes her means to express the need and desire to move.
Jendzio’s artwork has won numerous awards, and has been shown in many solo prestigious exhibitions at Art Galleries and Art Centers.
Her paintings and drawings are present in numerous private collections throughout the United States, as well as in corporate representations by Art Galleries, where she is known for her expressive large mixed media works.
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