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Faces I Remember on display at NOVA-Manassas

“Faces I Remember” featuring paintings by Thom Ciarniello will be on display from March 15 to April 11 at the Manassas Campus of Northern Virginia Community College. A reception to meet the artist is scheduled for March 16 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Colgan Hall exhibit space. The reception and exhibition are free and open to the public.

Thomas Joseph Ciarniello was born in 1955 in Youngstown, Ohio, to a large Spanish/Italian extended family. From an early period, he remembers being fascinated by people’s faces, their expressions, their coloring, and the way a face can make you feel rooted or uprooted. His earliest paintings were landscapes, however, upon graduation from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, his goal was to master the face on canvas. Early attempts were of the people who centered his life -- his grandmothers. 

Paralleling his journey in art was his career in cosmetology and esthiology. Ciarniello’s “day job” became very successful but he would say he is an accidental businessman. He owns three salons and two schools in Ohio and Nevada, yet his passion remains in art, especially portraiture. As his businesses grew, he began to allow himself time for furthering his art education.

He studied at Studio Incamminati in Philadelphia under the tutelage of Nelson Shank’s team of artists.  He regularly studies at the Art League and Torpedo Factory in Alexandria with such artists as Priscilla Treacy and Robert Liberace. These fine artists and hours of practice in his Ohio studio honed Ciarniello’s skills.

“Faces I Remember” represents a 37-year journey. “The faces in the show captured my imagination and some of the faces have my heart as well,” Ciarniello said. “I am grateful to Randy Michener for making this show possible. Randy’s gesture of support humbles me and offers a memory always cherished:  an opportunity to have an audience for my art.”

Northern Virginia Community College is the largest institution of higher education in the Commonwealth of Virginia and one of America's largest community colleges. NOVA enrolls more than 75,000 students at its six campuses in Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun, Manassas, Springfield and Woodbridge, and through NOVA Online. For more information about NOVA and its programs or services, call 703-323-3000 or visit the College's Web site, www.nvcc.edu.