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Jo-Ann Lizio

Jo-ann lizio, who came from new rochelle, N.Y., is a well-known Naples artist and teacher. She recently expanded her series of paintings on aspects of aviation with bright abstract conceptions she calls Flights of Fancy, depicting colorful butterflies. “I feel it is necessary to use the actual butterflies’ names in my titles to reinforce their Florida connection,” she says. “All are native to Florida. That way the viewer can get close to them.”

Lizio’s interest in flight and birds goes back some years to her early study of Leonardo da Vinci’s Renaissance drawings foreshadowing airplanes. A Lizio painting combining metal parts of an actual airplane, one of many she has done, was seen last spring in the Patty & Jay Baker Naples Museum of Art’s Florida Contemporary exhibition. But her ideas go beyond airplanes and lepidoptera.

The series Heavenly Bodies depicts pale female nudes pictured amid clouds. (Lizio says they are not self-portraits.) She is also exploring the painting of nebulae and other astronomical phenomena. View her work and biography at www.joannlizio.com.

20-inch by 24-inch,
oil on canvas


Marcus antonius jansen’s brilliantly painted abstracts comment on changing societal and world events. Often painted in enamel in vivid colors, their originality is astonishing. See through gestural swathes of pigment to what lies beneath: often urban landscapes with mean streets, an occasionally abandoned tire or horrific disasters. 

“People seemed to be painting the same way,” Jansen says. “My intention was to do something different. Some of my ideas come out of the blue. They are not site specific. They could be anywhere.” Jansen paints full time in his 7,000-square-foot Fort Myers studio. His work has moved from nonobjective tensions to more figural concerns. In The Collision, a ship sinks in a swirl as exotic animals thrash in the waves.

African-American and a Gulf War veteran, Jansen was born in Manhattan to an American mother and German father. He grew up in Germany, studied at a Dusseldorf art and design school and has worked in Fort Myers since 2003. He will exhibit new work in the SCOPE Art Fair, Miami Beach. Jansen’s work has been illustrated in Forbes, ARTnews and Art in America magazines. His paintings are in the New Britain, Conn., Museum of American Art, the Smithsonian Institution and other museums and private collections. Reach him through his website at www.marcusjansen.com.

The Collision
60-inch by 72-inch, oil enamel collage on canvas

© 2010 Marcus A. Jansen
Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.
Courtesy: 101 Exhibit Miami



Kosmas ballis, 37, is a multi-talented Fort Myers ceramic sculptor who, for several years, has exhibited his colorful, glazed, abstract porcelain sculptures at Goldberg Longstreth Gallery on Taylor Road in Naples. A Florida native, Ballis is a graduate of the Kansas City Art Institute, has a Florida State University master’s degree and has exhibited in Fienza, Italy, and elsewhere. He makes his own molds and clay; some of his recent sculptures rise higher than six feet.

Ballis is adept at decalcomania, the artful process of transferring images from printed paper to glazed ceramic tiles fired to 1,800 degrees. He uses a silkscreen and Photoshop computer process. He believes he has invented an art form: He fires black-and-white portraits of famous historic and contemporary celebrities onto 6-inch-square commercial tiles.

They are assembled in horizontal and vertical patterns resembling Sudoku and other crossword puzzles. The tiles can be arranged in virtually any size for a wall-hanging composition up to 20 feet square, or used individually as coasters. He arranges them so they fill the spaces where single letters would be in actual puzzles. Ballis and his wife have owned Echo Vintage Books and Vinyl, 1793 Fowler St., Fort Myers, for four years. He is also a part-time gallerist at Goldberg Longstreth Gallery and can be reached at kballis@msn.com.

20-feet by 20-feet,
ceramic tile mural



A t 5567 taylor road, you’ll find the studio, gallery and art school of Marco Bronzini, a native of Provence, France. Early in his artistic life, Bronzini lived in England in the home of John Skeaping, the sculptor, equine painter and first husband of abstract sculptor Barbara Hepworth.

Bronzini had a four-year scholarship to London’s Royal Academy of Art and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in 1980. He has worked and exhibited in Germany, Scotland, England, France and the United States. His work is in the collections of the Mellon, Astor and Guinness families as well as Orlando’s Cornell Museum of Fine Art and the Morse Museum of American Art, Winter Park.

Bronzini, 54, opened his own art school in 2003 after teaching a year at The von Liebig Art Center in Naples. Conducting classes from October through April, he averages 60 to 65 students per year in addition to his own painting commissions. The theme of Woman With a Dove has been a motif for more than 25 years, he says.

Bronzini loves opera and his work is colorful, gestural and romantic. He approves of a description a Naples magazine applied to him: “classically contemporary.” Aware of many styles, Bronzini’s work sometimes indirectly echoes modern masters, from Gustav Klimt to Braque, Picasso and Cezanne. He is the author of a new book, The Ten Commandments of Fine Art, a didactic approach. It and DVDs of his classes are available from his website, www.marcobronzini.com. 

Woman With a Dove
72-inch by 24-inch, oil on canvas



Donna spadafora came from boston where she was a frequently exhibiting member of the venerable Copley Society. She also taught art on Cape Cod. Spadafora holds degrees in art, English and primary education. She is well-known in Southwest Florida for her colorful, realistic paintings and watercolors. Living in Naples 16 years, she was with the Gardner-Colby Gallery for a year and headed The Community School of Naples’ art department for 10 years.

Spadafora left that work to concentrate on her professional art career and complete writing and illustrating several children’s books. She has garnered awards from the Naples Art Association, the Cape Cod Art Association and Artsphere, a Buffalo, N.Y., gallery. Besides having works in private and corporate collections, her murals grace many Neapolitan homes, and her paintings have been seen in several Southwest Florida magazines.

“I like to capture light in the landscape, part of what makes living here special,” she says. “The Naples environment stimulates a strong awareness of color. When painting people, I enjoy capturing the image in a moment of motion,” which also adds interest to her compositions. During the Naples Museum of Art’s 2009 artists’ studios tour, Spadafora sold a dozen oil paintings. Find her work at www.dspadafora-art.com.

Everglade Afternoon
24-inch by 36-inch,
oil on canvas

Donald Miller is a Naples art and architecture critic. 


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