After a long day crunching numbers in Accounts Payable, Michele DiFonzo longed to paint something colorful and whimsical. She painted a woman drinking wine. DiFonzo then considered how cats whine and decided to do a series of Wine-ing Cats. She brought her initial painting to a wine tasting where it was enthusiastically received. People loved pointing out their favorite characters. With wine in paw, the cats have traveled the world raising a toast under the Eiffel Tower or celebrating Mardi Gras in New Orleans.
Though proud of her series, DiFonzo is quick to point out she isn’t simply all about cats. When a former boyfriend showed her photos of the New England countryside, she knew she had to paint the landscape. Working from a small photo using acrylics and a palate knife she produced a landscape with a “Monet-Ish” quality. “I felt it, it just flowed.” She explained. DiFonzo also creates paper collages with such brush-stroke smooth lines you would swear they were painted. While DiFonzo’s landscapes reflect a different style from her wine-ing cats, her work resonates with life.
Art does imitate life in that it is challenging at times. Raising three kids on her own and working fulltime in Accounts Payable at Washoe Medical and the Atlantis left DiFonzo little time for painting. She notes that having struggles with a particular piece actually results in it having a stronger emotional impact with the audience.
DiFonzo’s daughter, Heidi Barnett, teaches art to children and seniors. DiFonzo proudly noted that her daughter recently did a mural in Seattle’s U District.
Michele DiFonzo’s work can be found at the following locations in Reno: Ryries Wildflower Village or you can contact her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.